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Sudan frees jailed opposition leader Mahdi

Sudan's former prime minister Sadiq al-Mahdi is surrounded by supporters at a hearing in Khartoum on May 15, 2014Sudan’s former prime minister Sadiq al-Mahdi was released from custody on Sunday, one month after state security agents detained him in a case that sparked concern from Western governments. An AFP reporter saw a smiling Mahdi, chief of the opposition Umma party, greeting about 200 noisy supporters at his headquarters in Khartoum’s twin city of Omdurman. Minutes earlier State Minister of Information Yassir Yousef told AFP that Mahdi “has been released”. The National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) arrested Mahdi on May 17 after he reportedly accused the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) of rape and other abuses of civilians in western Sudan’s Darfur region.

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