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30th July

Updated: Dress to Repress...

Sudan police flog women wearing trousers

mini skirt protestA group of Sudanese women has been flogged as a punishment for dressing "indecently", according to a local journalist who was arrested with them.

Lubna Ahmed al-Hussein, who says she is facing 40 lashes, said she and 12 other women wearing trousers were arrested in a restaurant in the capital, Khartoum.

She told the BBC several of the women had pleaded guilty to the charges and had 10 lashes immediately. Khartoum, unlike South Sudan, is governed by Sharia law.

Several of those punished were from the mainly Christian and animist south, Ms Hussein said. Non-Muslims are not supposed to be subject to Islamic law, even in Khartoum and other parts of the mainly Muslim north.

She said that a group of about 20 or 30 police officers entered the popular Khartoum restaurant and arrested all the women wearing trousers.

I was wearing trousers and a blouse and the 10 girls who were lashed were wearing like me, there was no difference, she told the BBC's Arabic service. Ms Hussein said some women pleaded guilty to get it over with but others, including herself, chose to speak to their lawyers and are awaiting their fates.

Under Sharia law in Khartoum, the 'normal' punishment for "indecent" dressing is 40 lashes.

Update: Sudan Flayed by France

18th July 2009. See article from

France has condemned the flogging of several women in Sudan, who were being punished for wearing trousers.

The foreign ministry called on Khartoum to abandon the prosecution of several others charged with the same offence.

Update: Sudanese authorities don't like the publicity from flogging ladies wearing trousers

30th July 2009. Based on article from

The public order police in Sudan have filed a complaint against female journalist Amal Habbani, editor of the Tiny Issues column in Ajrass Al Horreya newspaper over a 12 July story entitled Lubna…A Case of Subduing a Woman's Body, in which she defended Lubna al-Hussein, one of 13 women reportedly arrested – and in some cases flogged - earlier this month for wearing trousers in a Khartoum restaurant.

According to a press release issued by the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI), Amal is being charged under Article 159 of the 1991 Criminal Code, which deals with defamation. If convicted, she could face a fine of 10 million Sudanese pounds or almost $3 million Euros.

The International Press Institute (IPI) calls on the Sudanese authorities to immediately drop all charges against Amal Habbani,
said IPI Director David Dadge: Such unjust cases weaken the credibility of the Sudanese judiciary and undermine the rule of law in the country. The Sudanese government must accept that the media has a legitimate right to criticise cases where there are concerns about the fair administration of justice.


7th August

Update: Pants Sudan...

Sudan police thugs beat supporters of trouser wearing woman

Sudan flagPolice fired teargas and beat supporters of a Sudanese woman facing 40 lashes for wearing trousers in public shortly before her trial was adjourned this morning.

Police in Khartoum moved in swiftly and dispersed about 50 protesters, mostly women, who were supporting Lubna Hussein, a former UN worker charged with indecent dressing in violation of the country's Islamic laws.

Some of the women demonstrators wore trousers in solidarity with Hussein. We are here to protest against this law that oppresses women and debases them, said Amal Habani, a female columnist for the daily newspaper Ajraa al-Hurria (Bells of Freedom).

Hussein's trial was later adjourned until September by a judge to seek clarification from Sudan's foreign ministry over her status.

Hussein, who wore the same trousers to court as on the day of her arrest, said she was resigning from her job to have the chance to prove her innocence.

At the time of her arrest, Hussein was working for the media department of the UN mission in Sudan, which gives her immunity from prosecution. She submitted her resignation after her trial began last week because she wanted to go on trial to challenge the dress code law. A defence lawyer, Jalal al-Sayed, said the judge wanted to know whether Hussein still had immunity because her employers were still to accept her resignation.

The trial is seen as a test case of Sudan's harsh indecency laws.


12th August

Update: Sudan Seriously Pants...

Women wearing trousers now a 'serious' crime in Sudan

Sudan flagThe Sudanese woman journalist on trial for wearing trousers in public said she was prevented from leaving the country Tuesday for a trip to Lebanon, where she was to take part in a televised talk-show about women's issues.

Lubna Hussein could receive 40 lashes if found guilty of violating Sudan's indecency law which follows a strict interpretation of Islam.

Hussein, who has been released on bail during the hearings, has sought to draw international attention to her case and battle the law she described as un-Islamic and oppressive to women. Her trial resumes in September.

She was stopped at Khartoum airport. She was told that she was barred from traveling and was shown a ban signed by the public order police, which has raised the charges against her.

Travel bans are usually issued in major criminal cases when there is a risk of a defendant fleeing the country.

It seems that wearing trousers is now a serious crime in Sudan, Hussein said later.


8th September

Update: Pants Justice...

Trouser wearing journalist fined but not lashed

Sudan flag A Sudanese woman has said that she would continue her campaign of defiance after being convicted by a court of indecency for wearing trousers in public.

Lubna Hussein said she would refuse to pay the 500 Sudanese pound (£127) fine imposed on her by a judge who ruled that she should not face a punishment of 40 lashes.

Hussein was among 13 women arrested in July during a raid at a party by the police in Khartoum. Ten of the women were fined and flogged two days later. But Hussein and two others decided to go to trial.

I will not pay a penny, said Hussein, who stated last week that she would rather go to jail than pay any fine. I won't pay, as a matter of principle. I would spend a month in jail. It is a chance to explore the conditions of jail.

Amnesty International has called on the Sudanese government to withdraw the charges against Hussein and repeal the indecency law, which it said justifies abhorrent penalties.

The case is being seen as a test of Sudan's Islamic decency regulations, which many female activists claim are too vague and give undue latitude to individual police officers to determine what is acceptable clothing.

Lubna has given us a chance. She is very brave. Thousands of girls have been beaten since the 1990s, but Lubna is the first one not to keep silent, one protester, Sawsan Hassan el-Showaya, told Reuters.

About 150 protesters – most of them women, including some in trousers – had gathered on a traffic island to wave banners outside the court, hemmed in by security guards and riot police. The women were later confronted by dozens of men in traditional Islamic dress who shouted religious slogans and denounced Hussein and her supporters, describing them as prostitutes and demanding harsh punishment for Hussein.

Hussein's lawyer, Nabil Adib Abdullah, has said the law on indecent dress is so wide that it contravenes a person's right to a fair trial. Hussein challenged the charges, arguing that her clothes were respectable, so she did not break the law.


9th September

Update: Indecent Haste...

Trouser wearing journalist is released after fine is paid

Sudan flag A Sudanese woman who was imprisoned for wearing trousers deemed indecent has been released after the country's journalist union paid a $200 fine on her behalf.

Lubna Ahmed al-Hussein, who had been found guilty of flouting the country's decency laws, said after being released that the fine had been paid without her permission.

I am not happy. I told all my friends and family not to pay the fine, she said.

A Khartoum court on Monday ordered al-Hussein to pay a fine or face a month in jail, but she was spared a possible penalty of 40 lashes. Al-Hussein refused to pay, preferring to go to jail as a means of challenging Sudan's public order act.


26th November

Update: Forty Lashes for a Pair of Trousers...

Journalist skips Sudan to publicise her book

A Sudanese woman who was punished for breaching decency laws by wearing trousers has defied a travel ban by coming to France to publicise her new book.

Lubna Hussein was arrested in July and convicted of indecency charges in a case that made headlines worldwide. She was ordered to pay a fine or face a month in jail, but was spared an initial penalty of 40 whip lashes.

I was banned from leaving Sudan by air, by land or by sea and I succeeded in getting out ... so I am sure this book will surface in Sudan, she told Reuters in an interview.

Her book, Forty lashes for a pair of trousers , has come out in French and will be translated into English, Arabic, Swahili and other languages.

It details Hussein's arrest in July with 12 other women for wearing indecent clothing, a pair of green slacks. No one has been able to find a text in the Koran which justifies flogging a woman for the way she is dressed, said Hussein.


30th November

Update: On the Outskirts of Humanity...

Christian girl thrashed under islamic law for knee length skirt

Sudan flagSilva Kashif, 16, was lashed 50 times after receiving the sentence from a Sudanese judge, who ruled her knee-length skirt to be indecent.

The teenager was arrested while walking to the market in Khartoum. The police officer took her immediately before a Sharia court, and whipped by another police officer after being ordered by the judge to do so.

The girl's mother, Jenty Doro, told Reuters: She is just a young girl but the policeman pulled her along in the market like she was a criminal. It was wrong. I only heard about it after she was lashed. Later we all sat and cried ... People have different religions and that should be taken into account.

Because the family is Christian and the girl is a minor, they are planning on filing a lawsuit.

The family's lawyer Azhari al-Haj said: She was wearing a normal skirt and blouse, worn by thousands of girls. They didn't contact a guardian and punished her on the spot.


31st March

Update: Lashings of Nastiness...

Sudan's president as succinctly revealed by The Freethinker

omer bashirWar criminal President Omer Hassan Al-Bashir of Sudan has warned that his government will have zero tolerance for those who drink or deal in alcoholic drinks, saying they will be whipped under Islamic sharia laws.

The grumpy Muslim tyrant warned:

Anybody who drinks alcohol, we lash them. Anybody who makes alcohol, we lash them. Anybody who sells alcohol, we lash them.

I don't care about the UN or human rights organisations


15th December

Update: Failed Humanity...

The world watches Sudanese police thugs flogging woman

flogging in sudan Barbaric footage showing a woman being flogged repeatedly by a laughing policemen has sparked outrage after it was posted on the internet.

The YouTube video from Sudan shows an unidentified woman in a long black dress and headscarf being ordered to sit down before a uniformed police officer starts whipping her.

Howling in pain she screams Enough, enough and I want my mum .

A second officer - who laughs when he realises he is being filmed - later joins in with the cruel punishment

The woman's alleged crime is not known but there are suggestions circulating on the web that it could be for wearing trousers.

Flogging is common in northern Sudan but the violence in this particular video has sparked outrage and Sudan's judiciary has now launched an investigation into the incident. Sadistic: The policeman orders the screaming woman to place her legs out in front of her so he can whip them.

The video led to 50 women sitting down outside the justice ministry in Sudan in protest at laws which they say humiliate women. Dozens were arrested. The women held banners before being surrounded by riot police telling them to move.

Mike Blakemore from Amnesty International said: This horrendous footage provides a chilling reminder that flogging continues to be used as a form of punishment in Sudan. It is a practice which particularly affects women and Amnesty International is calling for an immediate end to this brutal practice. The law which enables flogging to persist is discriminatory and inhumane. Flogging of this kind amounts to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment and in some cases can constitute torture. No one should be subjected to such treatment.'


28th October

Update: From Bad to Worse...

Sudan's president declares that his country is set to adopt sharia law

Sudan flagSudan is officially declaring sharia to be the law of the land. The government is introducing an entirely Islamic constitution, which means a very strict form of sharia. President Omar Al-Bashir is quoted as saying the new constitution will reflect the fact that 98% of the people are Muslim. The official religion will be Islam and Islamic law the main source, he stated on October 12. Saying that, Al-Bashir had voiced similar warnings before.

Jonathan Racho of International Christian Concern tells OneNewsNow that the Republic of South Sudan, which is mostly Christian and animist, will not be affected by the move because it seceded this summer. But Christians still live in the north, he cautions:

People who are not Muslims who live in an Islamic state are not considered as full citizens and they are deprived of their freedom to worship. That includes freedom to assemble together and worship the Lord and freedom to speak about their faith to others.

The constitution would impact the Nuba Mountains, which is predominately Christian and a region that wanted to secede with the South but was not permitted to do so. Sudan has been bombing the region and destroying villages and churches.