August 14, 2019 (KHARTOUM) – Salah Gosh, former head of Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) has been banned from entry visa into the United States due to involvement in human rights violations, announced the State Department on Wednesday.
- Salah Gosh, the former head of the Sudanese intelligence and security services, on July 10, 2013, in Khartoum (AFP Photo)
Gosh was a member of the former national security council which decided to oust former President Omer a-Bashir after four-month protests but resigned two days after the collapse of the former regime on 13 April before to leave the country to an unknown destination.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, the Secretary of State Michael Pompeo said he decided to declare Gosh as a persona non grata due to his involvement in gross violations of human rights.
“Specifically, the Department has credible information that Salah Gosh was involved in torture during his tenure as head of NISS,” further stressed Pompeo who was the former head of the CIA.
Gosh who was the NISS chief between 2004 and 2009, had been reinstated, before his comeback in February 2018 was accused of being involved in the formation of the notorious Janjaweed militia during the bloody counterinsurgency campaign in Darfur where thousands of civilians were killed.
According to a confidential report to the UN Security Council on January 30th 2006, he was one of 17 Sudanese individuals identified as the most responsible for war crimes in Darfur.
However, Gosh in May 2006 was in a secret visit to Washington for talks with the CIA officials on counterintelligence cooperation within the framework of the counterterrorism war.
Pompeo further said that the sanction against Gosh comes to show the support of the United States for accountability for those involved in gross violations of human rights.
“We join the Sudanese people in their call for a transitional government that is truly civilian-led and differs fundamentally from the Bashir regime, particularly on the protection of human rights,” he said.
“We make this announcement today in support of an effort by the Sudanese people to place the Bashir regime, with its long record of human rights violations and abuses by Gosh and other officials, in the past for good,” he further stressed.
Washington based investigation group, Sentry welcomed the State Department’s decision to ban entry to Salah Gosh and called for more targetted sanctions such as asset freeze.
Such actions will provide a message to all the peace spoilers that business as usual in Sudan — which has been responsible for war and mass corruption — is no longer acceptable,” said John Prendergast, Co-Founder of The Sentry.