Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Lubna Hussein stands firm

Lubna Hussein, convicted in Sudan for wearing trousers, has refused to pay her fine. She'll now go to jail as a result

Nesrine Malik
guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 8 September 2009

"The scenes I saw outside the court which convicted Lubna Hussein were even more dramatic than those during the last quickly adjourned trial. Security forces and female protestors clashed again, but a third party introduced itself into the fray – Islamist men who proceeded to abuse the women and rip up their banners while the police joined in the name-calling. It seems the whole case has flushed out the nastier elements in Khartoum society as female supporters of Hussein were branded "prostitutes", that being the most polite word into which I can translate the insults......

The nominal fine and an admission of culpability – in effect a plea bargain – was rejected by Hussein for whatever residual admission of wrongdoing it suggested. The sentence for refusing to pay, a month's imprisonment, was threatened in order to put pressure on her to pay, but the judge may have underestimated her defiance. Sending her away for a month not only allows the court to flex the muscles it had been unable to flex through flogging, but also hide her away from scrutiny by the world's media, dampening any spirit of victory or jubilation.

More disturbingly, the end of the case has flushed out hardline elements allied with the government who appear to be relishing the opportunity to villify the women who have been protesting........"

No comments: