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World Briefing / Sudan

Woman jailed for wearing pants freed

September 09, 2009|Times Wire Reports

A woman convicted of public indecency for wearing trousers outdoors was freed, despite her desire to serve a month in prison to protest Sudan's draconian morality laws.

The judge who convicted journalist Lubna Hussein had imposed a $200 fine as her sentence, avoiding the maximum sentence of 40 lashes in an apparent attempt to put an end to a case that had raised international criticism of Sudan.

Hussein's refusal to pay the fine would have meant a month's imprisonment. She told the Associated Press that she was freed after the fine was paid without her knowledge by the Sudanese Union of Journalists, which is headed by a member of the ruling party.

"I had no choice. All my friends knew I didn't want to pay the fine," Hussein said.

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