Sudan Human Rights Group (SHRG) in Khartoum - roles, responsibilities, people in charge [SDN37191.E]

Correspondence dated 6 August 2001 from the Sudan Human Rights Group stated:

The main role of the Sudan Human Rights Group (SHRG) is to defend and give protection to the victims of the current dictatorship in the Sudan. ... SHRG was formed in February 1998 on the occasion of the visit of the Special Rapporteur of Human Rights to the Sudan Appointed by the UN High Commissioner of Human Rights in Geneva, namely Mr. Leonardo Franco.

The letter also stated that SHRG has a current membership of approximately 500 people. It identifies advocate Ghazi Suliman as the chairperson of SHRG. The Executive Committee has 20 members, including advocate Mohamed Zain Almahy.

Two sources describe SHRG as a "non-governmental organization" (All Africa News Agency 26 July 1999; Country Reports 2000 2001, Section 1.d.).

Some of the activities of SHRG were mentioned in press reports. An 11 March 2001 BBC report states that Suliman (Suleiman) met with Gerhart Baum, the new Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Sudan, to discuss the human rights situation in Sudan. Suliman reportedly described the effects of new measures in Sudan that "allowed for the indefinite detention of suspects without charge or access to legal aid" (ibid.). He also "protested to Mr. Baum about a new law barring women from working in restaurants and hotels" (ibid.). According to the London-based Sudan Victims of Torture Group (SVTG), on 6 December 1999, SHRG issued a press release "condemning the arrest of two students" (SVTG n.d.). Another report mentioned that SHRG issued an appeal on 5 July 1999 stating that the Sudanese press and publications law "violated the freedom of expression enshrined in the Sudanese Constitution of 1998" (All Africa News Agency 26 July 1999). This appeal followed the suspension of three independent newspapers on 5 July by the National Press and Publication Council (ibid.).

Several other sources mention that Ghazi Suliman is the person in charge of SHRG (AFP 3 March 2001; BBC 9 December 2000; DPA 27 March 2000; SVTG n.d.). Suliman is also identified as being in charge of the National Alliance (or Coalition) for the Restoration (or Return) of Democracy (NARD) (Vigilance Soudan n.d.; BBC 23 April 1999; SVTG n.d.; AFP 3 March 2001), which Agence France Presse (AFP) describes as "a group of opposition lawyers" (ibid.). AFP also mentions that Suliman is the head of an opposition party, the Democratic Forces Front (DFF) (ibid.). Country Reports 2000 states that Suliman is a human rights activist and an opposition lawyer for the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) (2001, Section 1.d.).

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.


Agence France Presse (AFP). 3 March 2001. "Sudanese Activist to be Tried on Criminal Charges.",4973,41326,00.html [Accessed 12 June 2001]

All Africa News Agency. 26 July 1999. "Sudan: Government Challenged over Crackdown on Private Press." (Africa News 26 July 1999/NEXIS)

British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). 11 March 2001. "UN Human Rights Rapporteur in Sudan." [Accessed 18 June 2001]

_____. 9 December 2000. "Sudanese Human Rights Activist Arrested." [Accessed 18 June 2001]

_____. 23 April 1999. "Sudanese Lawyer Freed from Prison." [Accessed 18 June 2001]

Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2000. 2001. United States Department of State. Washington, D.C. [Accessed 21 June 2001]

Deutsche Presse-Agentur (DPA). 27 March 2000. "Sudan Human Rights Group Head is Arrested in Khartoum." (NEXIS)

Sudan Human Rights Group (SHRG). 6 August 2001. Correspondence with the Research Directorate.

Sudan Victims of Torture Group (SVTG). n.d. "The Human Rights Situation in Sudan." [Accessed 12 June 2001]

Vigilance Soudan. 31 March 2000. [Accessed 12 June 2001]

Additional Sources Consulted

One non-documentary source did not respond within the time constraints of this Response.