Sudan attorney general orders formation of committee to oversee corruption probe

Sudanese protestors wave signs and flags as they continue to protest outside the army complex in the capital Khartoum on April 17, 2019. (AFP)
Updated 20 April 2019
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Sudan attorney general orders formation of committee to oversee corruption probe

  • Al-Walid Sayed Ahmed had submitted a request to lift the immunity of a number of officers suspected of killing a teacher who died in custody in February
  • Protest leaders are to hold talks Saturday with Sudan’s military rulers who have so far resisted calls to transfer power to a civilian administration

CAIRO: Sudan's attorney general on Saturday ordered the formation of a committee to oversee investigations into crimes involving public funds, corruption and criminal cases related to recent events, the state news agency SUNA said, citing a statement from the attorney general.
SUNA also said that attorney general Al-Walid Sayed Ahmed had submitted a request to the director of the country's National Intelligence and Security Services to lift the immunity of a number of officers suspected of killing a teacher who died in custody in February.

Earlier on Saturday, a judicial source said that Sudan's public prosecutor has begun investigating ousted President Omar Al-Bashir on charges of money laundering and possession of large sums of foreign currency without legal grounds. 
The source said that military intelligence had searched Bashir's home and found suitcases loaded with more than $351,000 and six million euros, as well as five million Sudanese pounds.
"The chief public prosecutor... ordered the (former) president detained and quickly questioned in preparation to put him on trial," a judicial source told Reuters.
"The public prosecution will question the former president in Kobar prison," the source added.
Relatives could not be immediately reached on Saturday for comment about the investigation.
Bashir, who is also being sought by the International Criminal Court over allegations of genocide in the country's western Darfur region, was ousted on April 11 by the military following months of protests against his rule and had been held at a presidential residence.
Bashir's family said this week that the former president had been moved to the high-security Kobar prison in Khartoum.
As president Bashir often played up his humble beginnings as the child of a poor farming family in Hosh Bannaga, a small village consisting mainly of mud houses on the eastern bank of the Nile some 150 km (93 miles) north of Khartoum.
The Sudanese Professionals' Association, leading the protests, has called for holding Bashir and members of his administration to account, a purge of corruption and cronyism and easing an economic crisis that worsened during Bashir's last years in power.
On Wednesday, Sudan's transitional military council ordered the central bank to review financial transfers since April 1 and to seize "suspect" funds, according to state news agency SUNA.
The council also ordered the "suspension of the transfer of ownership of any shares until further notice and for any large or suspect transfers of shares or companies to be reported" to authorities.

Meanwhile, protest leaders are to hold talks Saturday with Sudan’s military rulers who have so far resisted calls to transfer power to a civilian administration, a head figure in the protests told AFP.
“The military council will hold talks with the Alliance for Freedom and Change at 8:00 p.m. (1800 GMT) today,” said Siddiq Yousef, a senior member of the umbrella group leading the protest movement.


Iran, US tension is a ‘clash of wills’: Guards commander

Updated 23 May 2019
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Iran, US tension is a ‘clash of wills’: Guards commander

  • The commander said they will have a “hard, crushing and obliterating response” for their enemies
  • Tensions between Iran and US escalated after Trump restored sanctions

GENEVA: The standoff between Iran and the United States is a “clash of wills,” a senior commander of Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guards said on Thursday, suggesting any enemy “adventurism” would meet a crushing response, Fars news agency reported.
Tensions have spiked between the two countries after Washington sent more military forces to the Middle East in a show of force against what US officials say are Iranian threats to its troops and interests in the region.
“The confrontation and face-off of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the malicious government of America is the arena for a clash of wills,” Iran’s armed forces chief of staff Major General Mohammad Baqeri said.
He pointed to a battle during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war where Iran was victorious and said the outcome could be a message that Iran will have a “hard, crushing and obliterating response” for any enemy “adventurism.”
On Sunday, US President Donald Trump tweeted: “If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again!“
Trump restored US sanctions on Iran last year and tightened them this month, ordering all countries to halt imports of Iranian oil or face sanctions of their own.
Trump wants Iran to come to the negotiating table to reach a new deal with more curbs on its nuclear and missile programs.
Reiterating Iran’s stance, the spokesman for its Supreme National Security Council said on Thursday that “There will not be any negotiations between Iran and America.”
Keyvan Khosravi was also quoted as saying by the state broadcaster that some officials from several countries have visited Iran recently, “mostly representing the United States.”
He did not elaborate, but the foreign minister of Oman, which in the past helped pave the way for negotiations between Iran and the United States, visited Tehran on Monday.
“Without exception, the message of the power and resistance of the Iranian nation was conveyed to them,” he said.
In Berlin, a German diplomatic source told Reuters that Jens Ploetner, a political director in Germany’s Foreign Ministry, was in Tehran on Thursday for meetings with Iranian officials to try to preserve the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and cool tensions in the region.