Sudan Police Raid University Dorms, Arrest Hundreds

Sudanese police raided student dormitories
at Khartoum’s main university on Friday, beating and arresting hundreds
of students in the latest crackdown on youth protesters, activists said.


The youth activist
group Change Now said the National Intelligence Security Services
stormed the dormitories before dawn at the University of Khartoum and
detained more than 350 students.

All of those
arrested were later released, the President of the Sudanese Student
Union, Mohammed Salah, was quoted as saying by the official SUNA news
agency.

Students at the university began
protesting in late December to demand compensation for people displaced
from their homes by construction of a dam near the city of Dammir, 175
miles (280 kilometers) northeast of the capital. The also have been
calling for the right to form a student union and for an end to police
violence.

Change Now said in a statement that
the students arrested Friday “were brutally beaten and their properties
destroyed in a haphazard manner.”

“Terrorization
and intimidation of the students in the dorms further complicates their
reasons for protesting from the onset,” the group said.

Opposition lawmaker Mariam al-Sadeq al-Mahadi, a member of the Umma Party, called the raid “an attack on freedom of expression.”

“What
happened is part of a crippled and failing dictatorship,” she said. “We
now have an illegitimate regime that has completely failed to rule
because it does not provide services for people nor does it respect
people’s rights.”

SOURCE: The Associated Press