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Sudan Policy Update

On April 11, 2019, a historic revolution brought an end to the 30-year-old Islamist-led regime of President Omar al-Bashir in Sudan. A transitional government was formed to take the place of the former regime, and pave the way for democratic elections and widespread reforms. During its first year, Sudan’s transitional government has committed itself to ending egregious religious violations and improving religious freedom conditions to reflect Sudan’s traditionally diverse faiths. This policy update examines the condition of religious freedom in Sudan after the 2019 revolution and the formation of the civilian-led transitional government, as well as ways to improve the U.S.-Sudan bilateral relationship.

USCIRF Commends the Criminalization of FGM in Sudan

USCIRF welcomed the decision of the Sudanese transitional government to outlaw the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) by making it punishable with up to three years of imprisonment and a fine. According to the United Nations, nine out of 10 Sudanese females aged 15 to 49 have undergone some form of genital mutilation, which can lead to a variety of physical and psychological problems.

USCIRF Commends Sudan’s Disbanding of Former Regime-Appointed Church Councils

The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) commends Sudan’s Transitional Government, and in particular Minister of Religious Affairs and Endowments Nasreldin Mofreh, for ordering the dissolution of church councils that the deposed former regime had created to legitimize and obfuscate its persecution of several Christian communities, including the confiscation and destruction of church properties.

 

USCIRF Delegation Travels to Sudan to Assess Post-Revolution Progress toward Greater Religious Freedom

United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) Chair Tony Perkins and Commissioner Anurima Bhargava traveled to Khartoum, Sudan from February 26 to March 1 to meet with Sudanese government officials, including Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and Minister of Religious Affairs and Endowments Nasreldin Mofreh, religious leaders, representatives of civil society, and women’s rights advocates to gain a firsthand perspective on how the country’s sweeping and historic changes have impacted religious freedom conditions. 

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