A Sudanese University Professor Detained for Criticizing President Omer Al-Bashir
Dean of Graduate Studies at the University of Alzaem Al-Azhari, Professor Mohammad Zein Al-Abidin, was arrested soon after he left his office on Saturday February 20, 2012. His detention was in light of his op-ed published in AlTayar newspaper in which he criticized Sudanese President’s speech on TV on February 3. Al-Abidin’s comments came as honest criticism of rampant corruption in the country and President Omer Al-Bashir’s lack of strategy to combat it.
Family of Professor Mohammad Zein Al-Abidin (65 years) urges the Sudanese people, civil society organizations and human rights associations to support its efforts to reach him and be assured of his wellbeing. Al-Abidin is 65 years old and survived Colon Cancer early in the 90s. He had undergone a critical operation in which most of his small intestine and the ascending colon was eradicated. His life depends on medication and follows a specific diet. Furthermore, he has high blood pressure and diabetes.
The family was not notified of his detention at the time of the event. Their desperate efforts to have access to him were to no avail. However, they managed to provide him, eventually, with his life-saving medications which is enough just for two days’ dose. His diet restrictions were not discussed with the authority, which might expose him to great danger.
Professor Mohammad Zein Al-Abidin, Dean of Graduate Studies at the University of ALzaeem Azhari , has 3 daughters and two sons . He is an active member of the Democratic Unionist Party.
The Democratic Unionist Party issued a statement condemning the arrest of Professor Mohammad Zein Al-Abidin and calling for his immediate release. DUP dismissed legitimacy for his arrest. The party highlighted his critical medical condition especially the fact that he was admitted to hospital two days before his arrest. The statement urges for his immediate release, given his health complications that cannot withstand conditions of detention, interrogation and expected harassment or even torture.