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Sudan (Shariah Law)

Volume 406: debated on Wednesday 11 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with the Government of Sudan on the application of the shariah law to juveniles; and if he will make a statement. [117384]

Our embassy in Khartoum regularly raises cases concerning juveniles and other human rights cases, with the Government of Sudan. Most recently this has included the case of juveniles sentenced to death in Darfur and the sentence of lashings given to a 14-year-old girl convicted of adultery. As part of a recent DFID review of the Justice sector in the North of Sudan, experts on law enforcement, good governance and human rights and shariah raised many issues with the Government of Sudan including the application of shariah and criminal law to juveniles. This review will help to inform HMG's development policy in Sudan and ensure that human rights is a key element of that policy.