Amnesty urges Sudan halt stoning woman to death

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Al-Akhbar Management

Published Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Amnesty International appealed on Tuesday to Khartoum to halt the stoning of a 20-year-old Sudanese woman for adultery.

Intisar Sharif Abdallah was convicted of adultery after being tried in a Khartoum court on May 13 and now faces the death penalty.

She had initially pleaded not guilty, but admitted to the charges at a later hearing after she was reportedly beaten by her brother.

Abdallah, who has three children including a four-month old baby who is being kept in her cell, is due to be stoned. Groups of men will throw rocks at her until she dies.

Amnesty condemned the judgment, saying the sentence was unsound and that it was illegal to give new mothers the death penalty.

The group said it was "calling on the authorities to stop the execution of Intisar Sharif Abdallah, to overturn her stoning sentence for “adultery while married" and release her immediately and unconditionally."

The UK-based rights group's Sudan researcher Jean-Baptiste Gallopin said the trial had been a sham and that the killing of Abdallah would contravene international law.

"Abdallah was convicted after proceedings which do not come anywhere near meeting the international standards of a fair trial," he told Al-Akhbar.

"Among the most egregious elements of this trial are the fact that she was convicted solely because of her own confession which was made under duress, that she did not have access to a lawyer, and the fact that she was denied access to an interpreter, even though she does not speak fluent Arabic."

Human rights abuses in the country are common, having endured decades of civil conflict.

"We also call on the government to have the best interest of Intisar's child throughout the judicial process," Gallopin added.

(Al-Akhbar)

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