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Last Updated: Saturday, 4 December, 2004, 13:54 GMT
Sudan 'considers' Turabi charges
Hassan al-Turabi
Turabi used to be a close ally of President Bashir
The Sudanese authorities say they will decide next week whether to charge Islamist leader Hassan al-Turabi in connection with an alleged coup plot.

Dozens of people will appear in court on Sunday and Monday in Khartoum on charges related to the plot.

Sudan's minister of justice said claims by Mr Turabi's wife that charges would be dropped were premature.

Mr Turabi is a controversial figure in Sudanese politics and has spent much of the last five years in detention.

Mr Turabi - in prison in Khartoum since March - has been connected with what the government says was a foiled coup attempt in September.

Some 74 people, said to be members of Mr Turabi's Popular Congress Party, are due in court on Sunday and Monday.

The charges include declaring war on the state, which is a crime punishable by death.

Outspoken style

Mr Turabi's wife said on Friday that lawyers had confirmed charges against her husband over the alleged coup attempt were being dropped, although he would remain in custody.

But on Saturday, Minister of Justice Ali Muhammad Uthman Yasin denied the claims.

He said a decision on Mr Turabi would be taken by the end of next week, according to the BBC's Jonah Fisher in Khartoum.

A prominent Islamic figure, Mr Turabi was a key member of the Sudanese government until 1999 when he fell out with President Omar al-Bashir.

Since then, his outspoken style has led to him spending most of his time either under house arrest or in prison.

Charges over Sudan 'coup plot'
30 Sep 04 |  Africa
Sudan Islamist leader released
13 Oct 03 |  Africa
Country profile: Sudan
15 Sep 03 |  Country profiles


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