Tag Archives: South Sudan

South Sudan/Kenya: COMMENT: Disappearance and extrajudicial killing

May 30, 2019

It’s time for Kenya, South Sudan to account for the enforced disappearance of Samuel Dong and Aggrey Idri

 As news of the death of Samuel Dong Luak and Aggrey Ezboni Idri circulated recently, I felt extremely saddened and concerned about the region we live in. The enforced disappearance and extrajudicial killing of two outspoken critics of the South Sudanese government, by South Sudanese security services allegedly with the acquiescence of Kenyan authorities, and both states’ continuous denial of responsibilities, signals a worrying trend of disrespect for human life and insecurity for those who dare to speak up and challenge power.

Samuel Dong Luak was a prominent human rights lawyer, Secretary General of the South Sudan Law Society for over ten years, as well as a member of the South Sudan Constitutional Review Commission. Aggrey Ezboni Idri was an opposition leader, and member of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement in Opposition (SPLM-IO). In 2013, after receiving death threats for providing legal assistance to the former Secretary General of South Sudan’s governing party, Pagan Amum, who had been accused of “treason” by President Salva Kiir, Dong fled South Sudan and sought refuge in Kenya, where he was granted refugee status. The same year, Aggrey also relocated to Kenya after South Sudan descended into conflict.

The deceased lived with their families in the capital, Nairobi, until they were disappeared on 23 and 24 January 2017, respectively. Amnesty International, the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances, and other human rights groups called on the governments of Kenya and South Sudan to reveal the fate or whereabouts of the two men, suspected to be held by Kenyan authorities before deportation. The families of the disappeared also mobilised; petitioning Kenya’s High Court to produce the two men in court, but the petition was dismissed as Kenya denied having them in its custody. The family later asked the police to conduct a thorough investigation, but a final judgment in January 2019 confirmed the dismissal of their petition and ended judicial oversight into police action with regard to the case. Yet, the Court had noted that the police investigation fell short of seeking information from South Sudanese authorities and potential key witnesses.

COMMENT: Disappearance and extrajudicial killing

The Death Squads in South Sudan

https://www.voanews.com/africa/un-renews-south-sudan-arms-embargo

https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/we-must-not-let-down-the-people-of-south-sudan

South Sudan/Kenya: South Sudan activists’ bodies dumped in river: state agents

May 6, 2019

Image result for dong samuel luak

The bodies of two prominent South Sudan activists were dumped in Achwa River in Nimule after being killed, intelligence sources said.

The sources said the two critics of President Salva Kiir’s government Mr. Dong Samuel, a lawyer and human rights defender and opposition politician Izbon Agrey Idri corpses were transported from Juba to Nimule where they were dumped in the river.

“They were taken the same day they got killed in Juba,” one intelligence source told Africa Review.

He added that the river was a notorious dumping site of people executed by the state agents.

“When they dump these dead bodies there, they tie them with stones so that the corpses will not float in the water,” he said.

https://www.theeastafrican.co.ke/news/ea/South-Sudan-activists–bodies-dumped-in-river–state-agents-/4552908-5102816-ighdbhz/index.html

Former SA soldier Will Endley helps UN finger South Sudan government for alleged murder

https://www.standardmedia.co.ke/article/2001323797/south-sudan-denies-executing-two-critics

https://www.voanews.com/a/4905866.html

https://allafrica.com/stories/201905060011.html

https://www.theeastafrican.co.ke/news/ea/South-Sudan-youth-target-Kiir-ouster-in-mass-protests-/4552908-5104438-148ho5mz/index.html

https://www.africaintelligence.com/ion/power-brokers/2019/05/10/dong-samuel-luak-assassinated-by-splm,108356577-gra

http://www.rfi.fr/afrique/20190502-soudan-sud-selon-onu-services-secrets-ont-executes-deux-personnalites (FRANCAIS)

https://www.europapress.es/internacional/noticia-gobierno-sursudanes-niega-haya-ejecutado-dos-activistas-granja-presidente-pais-20190501175114.html (ESPANOL)

South Sudan/Kenya: Investigate Apparent 2017 Killing of Activists

April 30, 2019

UN Experts Report Says, ‘Highly Probable’ Security Service Killed Dong, Aggrey

South Sudanese authorities should promptly undertake an independent and effective investigation into the apparent extrajudicial execution of two outspoken critics of the government, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said today. Previously unidentified assailants snatched Dong Samuel Luak, a prominent South Sudanese lawyer and human rights activist, and Aggrey Ezbon Idri, a member of the political opposition, from the streets of Nairobi, Kenya in January 2017.

 

On April 30, 2019, the United Nations Panel of Experts on South Sudan issued a report finding that South Sudan’s National Security Service (NSS) kidnapped Dong and Aggrey in Nairobi on January 23 and 24, 2017 respectively. The UN experts said that the two men were flown to South Sudan on a commercial plane chartered with the help of South Sudan’s embassy in Nairobi on January 27. They were detained in the NSS headquarters at Jebel in the capital, Juba, then moved to the NSS training facility on President Salva Kiir’s farm in Luri, near Juba. The panel of experts concluded that it is “highly probable” that the two were executed there on January 30, 2017.

 

“The UN experts panel’s finding that Dong and Aggrey were most likely murdered days after their abduction while family and friends were stonewalled by Kenyan and South Sudanese authorities shows shocking cruelty,” said Jehanne Henry, associate Africa director at Human Rights Watch. “South Sudanese authorities should stop blocking this case and grant independent investigators access to security facilities in Jebel and Luri.”

https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/04/30/south-sudan-investigate-apparent-2017-killing-activists

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2019/04/south-sudan-investigate-apparent-2017-killing-of-activists/

https://www.voanews.com/a/un-panel-south-sudan-killed-activists/4899220.html

https://www.undocs.org/S/2019/301

http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article66958

https://radiotamazuj.org/en/v1/news/article/breaking-dong-and-aggrey-confirmed-dead-families-say

https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/05/02/south-sudan-reveal-fate-and-whereabouts-2-men

Rights group calls on South Sudan to investigate 2017 activist

https://www.nation.co.ke/news/UN-says-South-Sudan-men-killed-Juba/1056-5096362-a1bv5mz/

https://allafrica.com/stories/201905020157.html

https://www.euronews.com/2019/05/01/south-sudan-denies-kidnapping-executing-prominent-critics

It is time for accountability for the enforced disappearance of Samuel Dong and Aggrey Idri

South Sudan’s execution of two activists is a shocking betrayal of the struggle for freedom

https://www.nation.co.ke/news/africa/Akol-Koor-South-Sudan–executioner—kill-peace-deal/1066-5101936-7mpu9az/

https://www.hrw.org/fr/news/2019/04/30/soudan-du-sud-enqueter-sur-les-meurtres-presumes-de-deux-activistes (FRANCAIS)

http://www.rfi.fr/afrique/20190502-soudan-sud-selon-onu-services-secrets-ont-executes-deux-personnalites?fbclid=IwAR2gHpTfMcGNi9Hu6XxtpJND8wj65-UCxSnVSvspQnTR6qXDv-ajmPdwGak (FRANCAIS)

http://www.lefigaro.fr/flash-actu/2-opposants-du-gouvernement-du-soudan-du-sud-tres-probablement-assassines-20190430 (FRANCAIS)

South Sudan: Rights groups call to investigate disappearance of two South Sudanese activists

February 12, 2019

Dong Samuel Luak (Photo HRW)

Rights groups Monday have called on Kenya and South Sudan to investigate into the enforced disappearance of two South Sudanese activists in Nairobi more than two years ago.

Dong Samuel Luak, a prominent South Sudanese lawyer and human rights activist, and Aggrey Idri, a member of the SPLM-IO were kidnapped in the Kenyan capital on January 23 and 24, 2017, respectively.

Despite multiple reports about their arrest by the Kenyan police forces country and deportation to Juba, authorities in the two neighbouring denied any collusion in their disappearance.

On January 17, 2019, a Kenyan High Court ended its 24-month oversight of the police investigation and advised the families to pursue alternative administrative remedies such as filing a complaint with the Internal Police Oversight Authority.

In a joint statement issued on Tuesday, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch called on the two countries to ensure “effective, transparent, and impartial investigations” into their disappearance, stressing such a decision may lead to a denial of justice.

“The families of Dong Samuel Luak and Aggrey Ezbon Idri have waited patiently for the truth for two years, their lives in limbo,” said Jehanne Henry, associate Africa director at Human Rights Watch.

“But this decision which lets Kenyan police off the hook risks sending this case into oblivion and denying the families justice,” Henry further said.

https://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article67059

https://africandailyvoice.com/en/2019/02/12/amnesty-international-and-human-rights-watch-calls-for-investigation-of-activists-disappearance/

https://www.amnesty.ca/news/kenya-south-sudan-investigate-critics%E2%80%99-disappearance

https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/02/12/kenya-south-sudan-investigate-critics-disappearance

https://eyeradio.org/unmiss-human-rights-directors-wants-the-parliament-to-find-dong-and-aggrey/

https://www.amnesty.fr/actions-mobilisation/disparition-forcee-aidez-nous-a-les-retrouver (FRANCAIS)

https://www.amnesty-ladenburg-schriesheim.de/gleich-aktiv-werden/ (DEUTSCH)

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(L’Observatoire des Avocats Facebook, 19/03/19)

South Sudan: Disappearances of South Sudanese Critics Demand a Response

January 23, 2019

201901africa_southsudan_idri_dongluak

(Aggrey Ezbon Idri (L) and Dong Samuel Luak. © Private/Human Rights Watch)

Two years ago, South Sudanese lawyer Dong Samuel Luak disappeared off the streets of Nairobi, Kenya. I recently sat with Kur Lual, Dong’s law partner, in South Sudan’s capital, Juba. Holding his head in his hands, he asked me, “How does someone like Dong disappear just like that?” It’s a question many others inside and outside of South Sudan are still asking themselves.

Dong fled South Sudan in August 2013, but continued to denounce human rights abuses and corruption there from his new home in Nairobi. Just one day after his disappearance on January 23, 2017, a South Sudanese government critic and political opposition member, Aggrey Ezbon Idri, also went missing in Nairobi.

The Kenyan government denied having both Dong and Aggrey in custody despite reports from their families that they were being held by the police and awaiting deportation. Meanwhile, other reports indicate that by January 25, the two were already being held by South Sudan’s National Security Service (NSS), forces known to commit abuses including unlawful detentions and torture. A Kenyan court ordered the police to investigate the disappearance of the two, but questions about how they disappeared, who was responsible for their abduction, and how they got into South Sudan remain unanswered.

https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/01/23/disappearances-south-sudanese-critics-demand-response?fbclid=IwAR3XaELVj7Y48JOYx69BL-09ed6pydD5rFzWQKBmkV6X1YUHOe6EAzU0kCA

http://www.gurtong.net/ECM/Editorial/tabid/124/ID/21756/Default.aspx

http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article66958

https://reliefweb.int/report/south-sudan/disappearances-south-sudanese-critics-demand-response

https://www.whispereye.com/2019/01/23/makerere-university-might-need-us-all-nkunyingi-muwada/

South Sudan: Two SPLM-IO detainees are seen in South Sudan’s detention facility

November 14, 2018

The National Security facility in Juba, also known as the Blue House (Radio Eye photo)

The recently freed South African military expert William Endley said he saw one of prisoners members that the main opposition group at the National Security Service Headquarters (the Blue House) in 2017.

Endley and James Gatdet Dak SPLM-IO leader’s spokesperson were released on 3 November after a presidential pardon announced during the peace celebration day on 31 October 2018.

Speaking to Voice of America’s South Sudan in Focus programme on Wednesday Endley said he saw Aggrey Idri in the National Security Service Headquarters (the Blue House), adding he and his friend Dong Samuel Luak were moved from the prison to another location.

“Aggrey and Dong were in the security house. But I did not see Dong, as he was kept downstairs. I only saw Aggrey,” he said during a seven minutes interview aired on Wednesday.

“They were taken away on the 27th of January 2017 and up to date we did not hear anything about them,” he added.

Dong, a South Sudanese human rights lawyer and activist, and Aggrey Idri, a vocal government critic and member of the SPLM-IO, disappeared off the streets of Nairobi on January 23 and 24, 2017, respectively.

Kenyan authorities denied any involvement in or knowledge of the abduction. Also, South Sudanese officials denied having them in Juba prison.

In January 2018, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said they have credible reports that “the two men had been seen in custody at the National Security Services (NSS) headquarters in Juba on January 25 and 26 2017 and were then removed from this facility on January 27”.

http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article66608

http://www.sudantribune.com/spip.php?article66527

https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/05/02/south-sudan-reveal-fate-and-whereabouts-2-men

https://www.lrwc.org/sudan-immediately-reveal-whereabouts-and-ensure-safety-of-lawyer-dong-samuel-luak-letter/

South Sudan: Lawyers union seeks EACJ help to free Juba political prisoners

October 20, 2018

salva kiir, riek machar

The Arusha-based Pan African Lawyers Union has gone to the East African Court of Justice (EACJ) to force the South Sudan government to release political detainees.

 

The release of political detainees was part of the September 12 peace agreement.

 

Denald Deya, PALU chief executive, has filed a Habeas Corpus — a writ requiring a person under arrest to be brought before a judge — at the EACJ for businessman and philanthropist, Kerbino Wol Agok, who has been detained without trial since April.

 

Allies of Mr Agok told The EastAfrican that they do not know his whereabouts since he led a prisoners’ protest at the National Security Service premises commonly known as the Blue House on October 7.

 

Amnesty International has also called for the release of a prominent South Sudanese academician and activist Peter Biar Ajak, who was arrested on July 28 at the Juba International Airport and is believed to be held at the Blue House.

 

The government is accused of denying the detainees access to their families, lawyers and doctors. They are confined and given one meal per day.

 

http://www.theeastafrican.co.ke/news/ea/Lawyers-union-seeks-EACJ-help-to-free-Juba-political-prisoners/4552908-4814954-20sxdf/index.html

How Ateny’s “Drum of Truth” was Silenced Forever

https://www.amnesty.ie/south-sudan-release-academic-and-activist-peter-bjar-ajak/ (PLEASE SIGN URGENT PETITION!)

https://www.change.org/p/freedom-for-peter-biar-ajak?recruiter=906229445&utm_campaign=signature_receipt&utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=share_petition (PLEASE SIGN URGENT PETITION!)