The United Nations urged the Sudanese government Thursday to review the death sentences of 30 African rebels in Darfur because the decisions may have failed to meet international standards.
Sudan's counter-terrorism court ruled that the rebels took part in the failed attacks against Khartoum in May and sentenced them to death. But the UN special envoy for Sudan Ashraf Qazi raised concerns that the rebels did not receive a fair trial, the dpa reported.
"The UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) has concerns that the judicial process may not have met international standards," Qazi said.
UNMIS said information it received showed the accused were only given access to lawyers after the trials had begun and confessions were obtained while they were held incommunicado and in the absence of legal counsel.
The May 10 attacks against the Sudanese government were carried out by members of the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) in Omdurman, on the outskirts of Khartoum.
Qazi said Khartoum is entitled to the right of prosecution and sentence, but proceedings with international legal standards must be respected, particularly in regards to capital punishment, which the UN has asked its members to abolish.