Muslim woman jailed for not paying ‘pants’ fine

Mohammed Khair, the information attachĂ© at the Sudan Consulate in Dubai, said the international campaign surrounding the case “proves the West contributes only toward deepening (the) crisis.”

Wow. The crisis in the Sudan is about what women are wearing. Who knew?

(CNN) A woman put on trial for wearing clothing deemed indecent by Sudanese authorities was jailed Monday for refusing to pay a court-ordered fine, her lawyer said.

Lubna al-Hussein had faced 40 lashes for wearing pants deemed too tight and a blouse considered too sheer. The threat of lashes was dropped when a court found her guilty but ordered instead that she pay a fine.

“She is now in jail,” her attorney Nabil Adib told CNN. “She refused to pay the fine as a matter of principal.”

Al-Hussein will appeal her verdict in an effort to have the conservative Muslim government’s decency law declared unconstitutional, Adib said by phone from Khartoum.

“We intend to file an appeal within the next three days, but we do not know how long it will take the court of appeals to decide on the case,” Adib said. “We expect it will happen in the next two to three weeks.”

He said al-Hussein could be in jail for a month unless her verdict is overturned.

Al-Hussein, who was arrested in July, pleaded not guilty during her one-day trial Monday, he said. She was not allowed to call defense witnesses or present a defense case, he added.

She was sentenced to pay 500 Sudanese pounds ($209) or face a month in prison, starting immediately, the lawyer said.

“She thinks that she did not have fair trial and a conviction was wrong so she did not want to pay the fine nor let anyone else pay on her behalf,” Nadib said.

Al-Hussein, a journalist who worked in the media department of the United Nations mission in Sudan, resigned from her U.N. position in order to waive her immunity as an international worker and face trial.

Police lobbed tear gas at people outside the courthouse Monday, and closed roads leading to the courthouse before the trial began, al-Hussein told CNN before the hearing.

Sudanese security forces roughly handled scores of al-Hussein supporters, injuring some and detaining 47 women, according to an eyewitness who spoke to CNN by phone.

A Sudanese official accused “the West” of interfering in the case. Continue Reading →

‘Iran-Sudan-Hamas chain exposed’

The Jerusalem Post-March 26-2009

Hello Iran..I would like to place an orderThe latest reports  of an alleged IAF strike on a Hamas arms convoy in Sudan draw attention to an arms network running from Iran, via the Persian Gulf and Yemen to Sudan, Egypt, and Hamas-ruled Gaza. The existence of this network has been noted by analysts in the past. It forms part of a larger, overt, close relationship maintained by both Iran and Hamas with the regime of Omar al-Bashir in Khartoum.

Reva Bhalla, an analyst at the US-based private intelligence company Stratfor, was the first to publicly note the transfer of arms from Iran to Hamas via Sudan. Speaking to reporters in early January, Bhalla suggested the involvement of Hizbullah agents in an Iranian created network bringing arms from Sudan to the Gaza Strip. Bhalla depicted the network in the following terms:

“You’ll have a bunch of Hizbullah agents who will procure arms through Sudan. They’ll enter Egypt under forged documents, pay off disgruntled Bedouins in the Sinai with things like light arms, cash, Lebanese hashish – which they can sell in the black market – and pay off Egyptian security guards as well so that they can travel covertly into Gaza to pass off the weapons shipments through Hamas’ pretty extensive underground tunnel network.”

It is impossible to verify the precise accuracy of these details. However, the involvement of Sudan in the Iranian-Hamas war effort would fit with the larger pattern of Sudan’s regional alliances and activity. The close connections between Teheran, Khartoum and Hamas are a matter of public record. Continue Reading →