The facts as submitted by the petitioner
The petitioner was a practising lawyer in Sudan. He alleges that his sister, Zakia, is the
widow of Bashir Mustafa Bashir, who was one of the 28 persons involved in the coup in Sudan
in 1989, for which Mr. Bashir was executed. The petitioner’s sister later became active in an
opposition organization for the relatives of martyrs. Since 1993, the petitioner had been active in
the banned Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) belonging to al-Tajammu’ al-Watani li’adat
al-Dimuqratiya (the National Democratic Alliance, a coalition of opposition parties). He is a
member of the Sudanese Bar Association since 1992.
In the summer of 1997, a pro-government party competed with DUP in elections for the
Sudanese Bar Association. During preparations for the elections, DUP organized a meeting for
its supporters. The petitioner participated as one of the organizers and speakers. He claims that
the meeting was attended by so many people, that Sudanese authorities intervened and arrested
several persons, among them the petitioner. He alleges that he was subsequently kept in a
detention centre of the State security service in Al Khartoum-Bahri for 10 days, during which he
was questioned, mistreated and tortured. He was then conditionally released (travel ban).
While travelling to Port Sudan to participate in activities for the opposition party in
September 1997, the petitioner was arrested for the second time. He was kept in detention in
Sawakin, where he was questioned and allegedly threatened with death. After three days in
detention, he claims that he was thrown into the sea and was picked up after about 15 minutes.
He was then brought to a prison where he was detained for a week. Upon release, he was told to
stop his political activities.
On the day of the elections, a conflict erupted between the government party and the
supporters of the opposition over allegations of election fraud. The petitioner was once again
arrested and kept in detention for three days, during which he claims to have been tortured.
On 30 January 1998, he again was arrested while attending a mass demonstration that he had
helped to organize. He was brought to a secret underground prison, a so-called “ghost house”,
where he was kept in detention for about two months. He managed to escape from the prison
and fled to the Netherlands, where he arrived on 13 April 1998.
The petitioner requested asylum in the Netherlands on 15 April 1998. On 12 May 1998,
the migration authorities interviewed him, and the Secretary of Justice rejected his request as
manifestly ill-founded on 23 May 1999. The petitioner’s request for residence on humanitarian
grounds was also rejected.
On 14 April 2000, the Secretary of Justice rejected his request for a review of the
decision. Furthermore, the petitioner’s appeal to the Hague District Court was rejected
on 29 March 2001.
The petitioner claims that if returned to Sudan, he would be subjected to torture. In
substantiation of this fear, he provides his history of previous detention, with allegations that he
was tortured on account of his political activity in Sudan. He further indicates that there is a