Emergency motion on Sudan: end the killings and human rights violations (cross party)
Decision Maker: Council
Decision status: For Determination
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: No
Councillor Turner left the meeting for the debate and decision on this motion.
Councillor Aziz, seconded by Councillor Harris, and supported by Councillor Simmons, proposed the submitted cross-party motion as set out in the agenda and briefing note.
After debate and on being put to the vote the motion was agreed.
Council resolved to adopt the following motion:
This council supports the calls of Oxford’s Sudanese community to hold the Transitional Military Council to account over the killings and abuses of protestors.
Since the fall of Omar al Bashir on 11th April 2019, Sudan’s transition to democratic, civilian authority rule has been violently quashed and met by human rights violations carried out by the military authorities comprising of the Transitional Military Council (TMC). Rights violations include using rape and sexual abuse as a political weapon, enforced disappearances and imprisonment of protestors, the use of live ammunition and torture against unarmed protestors and attacks on hospitals and health facilities to further target the injured.
Since December 2018 a mass peaceful protest uniting citizens across class and regional lines over the cost of living has developed into a representative protest movement calling for peaceful democratic change supported by Sudan’s independent trade unions, professional associations and opposition political parties.
Doctors, teachers, lawyers, journalists, students and workers are among people who have taken strike action and joined the democracy movement. Many of these individuals are related to or are friends of Oxford residents of Sudanese heritage or Sudanese people who are residents of Oxford.
This council acknowledges the brave and principled work of Oxford’s Sudanese community and wider diaspora to push for accountability over the many decades of human rights violations and crimes against the Sudanese people by the regime.
This council believes the people of Sudan have the right to protest and organise without fear of violence and abuse.
This council condemns the British government for being complicit in the violence through its cooperation with the Saudi campaign in Yemen (where Sudanese militias are deployed) and through funding Sudanese militias indirectly through EU border policy (the Khartoum process/Rome Declaration 2014).
This council acknowledges and thanks Anneliese Dodds MP and Layla Moran MP for demanding the UK government applies pressure on the Sudanese authorities to end the killings and abuses and ensure there is a democratic transition of power.
In support of the local Sudanese community, this Council asks the Leader of the Council to write to the relevant U.K. Government Ministers in the Home Office and Foreign Office, and to the city’s MPs, asking:
1. that the UK government to condemn the use of violence, rape and sexual violence against protesters, cease all forms of security cooperation with the TMC, and look into imposing sanctions on individuals connected to the regime and figures in the TMC;
2. that the Home Office provide sanctuary to Sudanese people seeking safety from the regime and its allies; and
3. the city’s MPs to also write appropriate letters to the Home Office and Foreign Office representing the demands set out in this motion.
Report author: Councillor Shaista Aziz
Publication date: 09/08/2019
Date of decision: 22/07/2019
Decided at meeting: 22/07/2019 - Council