Opposition Activist Abducted In Egypt and Forcibly Returned to Sudan

Sudanese opposition activist Mohamed Boshi, who had been living in Egypt, was abducted and returned to Sudan in an operation coordinated by the security services of both countries.

A Sudanese opposition activist who had been living in Egypt was abducted and returned to Sudan in an operation coordinated by the security services of both countries.

Human Rights Watch says Sudanese authorities have confirmed they are holding activist Mohamed Boshi, who was taken in Cairo in October and held incommunicado before being charged last week with espionage and crimes against the state.

Five armed men believed to be Egyptian Security agents searched his apartment in Cairo before he went missing on October 10, witnesses told HRW.

News of Boshi’s disappearance surfaced on social media the next day, amid activists’ fears that Egyptian authorities had returned him to Sudan. Boshi’s family members in Sudan told Human Rights Watch that Sudanese security officials contacted them on October 13 to say he was in their custody but would not say where.

HRW’s Jehanne Henry said that “Egyptian and Sudanese authorities cooperated in forcibly disappearing and returning an asylum-seeker to Sudan, in clear violation of international norms and the prohibitions on enforced disappearances, persecution, and torture.”

The New York-based group urged for Boshi’s release.

On November 8, Sudan’s national security agency announced criminal charges against announced Boshi for espionage and crimes against the state, which carry the death penalty. Sudanese officials have in recent years brought similar charges against rights activists.  Boshi remains in national security custody, and family members and lawyers have not been permitted to visit him.

Boshi faces the death penalty in his home country. Egypt and Sudan regularly cooperate against opposition figures in both countries.

The Sudanese political activist, formerly a member of the opposition Baath Party, was previously detained in Sudan in 2011 for several weeks after criticizing presidential advisor Nafie Ali Nafie.

In 2013 he was detained for a month during a crackdown on protests. He was beaten and abused both times, according to HRW.

Boshi moved to Cairo in 2017 and sought protection from the United Nations refugee agency.