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Sudan threatens to ban women group in Blue Nile accusing it of Christian activities

IDPs gather to receive food provided by the WFP during a visit by a EU delegation, at an IDP camp in Azaza, east of Ed Damazin, Blue Nile state, October 21, 2015. (Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah/Reuters Photo)
March 22, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - A local human rights group working in Sudan’s troubled Blue Nile State said the Sudanese authorities have threatened to ban the activities of women association accusing it of exercising Christian missionary activities.

In a statement extended to Sudan Tribune, Hudo Centre said the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) raided the premises Shali Women Association (SWA) in Ed Damazin, the capital of the Blue Nile State on 3 February 2019 and ordered to end a meeting of the board of directors.

The security agents further ordered the education and health women group to not carry out any future without the NISS’s permission

"If not, the NISS promised to arrest them and revoke their license. NISS accused them of carrying out Christian missionary activity and receiving foreign funds. Since then, the SWA has frozen all its activities and decided to restrict the movement of its members," read the statement.

Shalli Elfeel Women Association is a community-based organization for women established in 2017. Their activities include civic education and health in Blue Nile State. Shalli is the name of an area outside Kurmuk town of Blue Nile.

Ed Damazin is one of the towns where erupted last December the first anti-government protests that continue to take place across the country.

Also, some parts of the state are under the control of the SPLM-North fighters who declared a unilateral cessation of hostilities for more than two years under a regional initiative to end the war in Sudan.