Sudan arrested Darfuris after UN trip: Activists

The missing Darfuri refugees were seen speaking to envoys from the UNSC.

Khartoum: Activists have accused Sudanese security officials of harassing and arresting Darfuri refugees who were seen speaking to envoys from the United Nations Security Council during a visit to the region.

Security officers started searching for 16 people soon after the ambassadors ended a visit to North Darfur`s Abu Shouk and Al Salaam refugee camps earlier this month, the African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies said in a statement received on Friday.

The 16 went into hiding but security officers later arrested two men, one of whom was seen talking to Washington`s ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice, in the area`s Abashed camp, the UK-based Centre said in the statement.

"The ACJPS calls on the government of Sudan to immediately cease harassment of individuals who may have met with the UN Security Council, and to end the repressive use of emergency laws to target and intimidate members of civil society and IDP (internally displaced people) leaders," said the group.

The US and British envoys on the trip told reporters refugees had complained to them about hunger and deteriorating security in the arid region.

Sudan`s Darfur conflict, which broke out in 2003, pitting mostly non-Arab rebels against government troops and allied militias, forced more than 2 million people to flee their homes and take refuge in ramshackle camps.

No one was immediately available from North Darfur`s government to comment.

Bureau Report

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