Dozens arrested and injured in pro-Saddam rally in Sudan

Sudanese authorities have arrested a dozen pro-Saddam Hussein supporters who demonstrated against the ousted Iraqi leader's execution, a member of the Baath Party in this capital said Thursday.

Seventeen others were injured, including the party's Secretary-General Osman Abu Rass who was "severely beaten up by police using batons and sticks," said Mohamed Dhyaa said.

Those arrested are scheduled to stand trial later Thursday, he said.

"Those who had been released on bail yesterday are to stand trial now in such a hasty manner without our knowing the charges, which they say are related to spurring unrest and chaos," Dhyaa said.

Sudanese authorities and the Ministry of Interior were not immediately available to comment on the arrests and allegations of police aggression, reports AP.

Dhyaa said the Popular Organization for the Defense of the Faith, an umbrella group that includes the Baath party and others, had received initial police and security permission to organize the demonstration against Saddam's Dec. 30 hanging.

"However, when some of our people including the leaders of the Arab Baath party gathered, police attacked them in a vicious manner, using tear gas, batons and whips," Dhyaa alleged.

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