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U.S. Condemns Release of Sudanese Terrorist

(FILE) Security forces outside the National Prison in Khartoum, Sudan.
(FILE) Security forces outside the National Prison in Khartoum, Sudan.

The United States strongly condemns the release of Abdel-Ra’uf Abuzaid, who was convicted of murdering a U.S. diplomat.

U.S. Condemns Release of Sudanese Terrorist
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The United States strongly condemns the unilateral decision by Sudanese authorities to release the Specially Designated Global Terrorist Abdel-Ra’uf Abuzaid. Abuzaid was convicted, along with others, of murdering U.S. diplomat John Granville and Sudanese citizen Abdelrahman Abbas, both employees of USAID, in Khartoum in 2008.

John Granville was 33 years old when he was gunned down in the terrorist attack. He had been working on democracy and governance programs for USAID in support of a landmark peace agreement that ended Sudan’s long civil war. Abdelrahman Abbas, 39, was one of the original members of USAID’s Disaster Assistance Response Team for Darfur.

Abuzaid was convicted and sentenced to death for his involvement in the killings. On January 30, 2023, the Sudanese Supreme court released him. State Department Spokesperson Ned Prices said, “The Sudanese claim that the Granville family had extended forgiveness is false. We call on the Sudanese Government to exercise all available legal means to reverse this decision and to re-arrest Abuzaid.”

In a written statement, USAID Administrator Samantha Power said, “The lack of transparency about the legal process that led to the release of John and Abdelrahman’s killer is unacceptable – and the assertion that the 2020 U.S.-Sudan Bilateral settlement of legal claims constituted forgiveness for Abuzaid is false and misleading. … We will continue to push for full accountability, and I and the entire USAID family extend our deepest condolences to John and Abdelrahman’s families as they continue to endure the trauma of the killing of their loved ones,” said Ambassador Power. “As we work to honor the memory of John and Abdelrahman and pursue justice for their murders, we remain committed to the Sudanese people and their aspirations for a peaceful, democratic nation. “

State Department Spokesperson Price noted that the United States continues to engage with Sudanese officials at the highest levels and to demand action on this critical issue.

“The safety of U.S. citizens and embassy personnel abroad remains the highest priority of this administration,” declared Spokesperson Price. “We will not relent.”