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KHARTOUM - 15 Jan 2013

Khartoum North court drops charges against Nuba activist Jalila Khamis

The Khartoum North Court in the Sudanese capital on Sunday overturned several but not all of the charges against the Nuba activist Jalila Khamis Kuku.

By this decision Judge Nasser Saleh lifted from the imprisoned activist the most serious charges brought under the Sudanese criminal law of 1991, which were punishable by death.

The 45-year old activist and teacher was arrested in early 2012. She was working as a volunteer among internally displaced people from her native South Kordofan.

She had appeared in mid-2011 in a Youtube video denouncing conditions in the war-torn state. After her arrest, Jalila’s case drew the attention of international advocacy group Amnesty International, which called her a “prisoner of conscience.”

Jalila no longer stands accused of charges brought under articles 50, 51, and 53, absolving her of undermining the constitutional order, provoking war against the state and espionage.

Charges brought under article 64 on the use of military uniforms and emblems and 66 on publishing false information about the country still stand.

Judge Nasser said in the hearing on Sunday that the prosecution failed to provide credible evidence to the court, so the court refuted charges of trying to provoke war against the country and undermining the constitutional order, especially when the witness failed to confirm the charges with clear evidence.

Mahjoub Abdallah, the advocate of activist Jalila, told Radio Tamazuj that the court has adjourned the case until its next hearing on Thursday.