U.S. Department of State
Office of the Spokesperson
For Immediate Release
Statement by Robert Palladino, Deputy Spokesperson
January 23, 2019
The United States is concerned about the increasing number of arrests and detentions, as well as the escalating number of people injured and killed, following four weeks of protests across Sudan. The United States supports the right of the Sudanese people to gather peaceably to voice their demands for political and economic reform and a more peaceful and inclusive Sudan. We condemn the use of violence, including the use of live fire, and the excessive use of tear gas by the Sudanese security forces.
A new, more positive relationship between the United States and Sudan requires meaningful political reform and clear, sustained progress on respect for human rights. This must include prohibiting the security services’ use of arbitrary detention and excessive force against protesters, and ending the government’s harassment and intimidation of journalists, human rights defenders, political opposition, medical personnel, students, and other civil society actors.
We urge the government to release all journalists, activists, and peaceful protesters who have been arbitrarily detained, and to allow those facing charges full access to legal representation and the opportunity to seek legal review of their detention. We also call on the government to allow for a credible and independent investigation into the deaths and injuries of protesters. Moreover, to address the legitimate grievances of the population, the government must create a safe and secure environment for public expression and dialogue with the opposition and civil society in a more inclusive political process.