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For Immediate Release

Sudanese Physician and PHR Partner, Dr. Mohammed Ahmed Abdallah, Receives 2007 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award Today in Washington, D.C.

Cambridge, Mass - 11/16/2007

Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) today congratulated Dr. Mohammed Ahmed Abdallah, Medical Treatment Director of the Amel Center for Treatment and Rehabilitation of Victims of Torture in Sudan, who will receive the 2007 Robert F. Kennedy (RFK) Human Rights Award from Senator Edward Kennedy this morning in Washington, DC. Dr. Ahmed, who treats torture survivors in Darfur, has worked tirelessly to create a network of health providers to care for victims of torture and sexual violence, which has become a hallmark of the brutal genocide in Darfur.

"Dr. Ahmed’s receipt of this prestigious honor sends a powerful message to governments around the world that much more must be done to protect the human rights of civilians in Darfur,” stated Frank Donaghue, Chief Executive Officer of PHR. "PHR continues to call on the UN Security Council to ensure that the people of Darfur can finally be safe from the gross abuses that Dr. Ahmed and his colleagues are trying to heal every day.”

PHR has worked closely with local partners like Dr. Ahmed to address the human rights crisis that continues to unfold in the region, especially on the critical issue of sexual violence.

"His tireless and courageous work to assist and treat those who have survived torture and sexual violence should serve as an inspiration for donors and governments to fully address the pandemic of rape and torture Darfur’s civilian population has suffered,” said Donaghue.

The Amel Center for Treatment and Rehabilitation of Victims of Torture in Sudan provides legal, psychological and medical services to victims of torture and sexual violence. Physicians for Human Rights has provided training to the Amel Center on how to properly document sexual violence and torture for legal prosecution. Impressed by the commitment of the Amel Center staff, PHR nominated Dr. Mohammed Ahmed both for his extraordinary talents and dedication, as well as to highlight the critical work of the organization.

PHR's Darfur Survival Campaign mobilizes health professionals, students, and members of the general public to press for urgently needed security in Darfur, including augmented African Union troops and a UN peacekeeping force of 20,000, as authorized by UN Security Council Resolution 1706. In addition, the Campaign insists on compensation and restitution for survivors.

PHR’s advocacy efforts on behalf of the people of Darfur are supported by research conducted in three investigations in the region. Investigators traveled to the Chad-Sudan border to interview survivors of the genocidal attacks and to Darfur to document the devastation of three villages. Their findings are presented in two reports, The Use of Rape as a Weapon of War in the Conflict in Darfur, and Darfur - Assault on Survival: A Call for Security, Restitution and Justice.

Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) is an independent organization that uses medicine and science to stop mass atrocities and severe human rights violations. We are supported by the expertise and passion of health professionals and concerned citizens alike.

Since 1986, PHR has conducted investigations in more than 40 countries around the world, including Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Sudan, the United States, the former Yugoslavia, and Zimbabwe.

  • 1986 — Led investigations of torture in Chile gaining freedom for heroic doctors there
  • 1988 — First to document the Iraqi use of chemical weapons on Kurds providing               evidence for prosecution of war criminals
  • 1996 — Exhumed mass graves in the Balkans and Rwanda to provide evidence for               International Criminal Tribunals
  • 1997 — Shared the Nobel Peace Prize for the International Campaign to Ban Landmines
  • 2003 — Warned US Policymakers on health and human rights conditions prior to and               during the invasion of Iraq
  • 2004 — Documented genocide and sexual violence in Darfur in support of international               prosecutions
  • 2010 — Investigated the epidemic of violence spread by Burma’s military junta
  • 2011 — Championed the principle of noninterference with medical services in times of               armed conflict and civil unrest during the Arab Spring
  • 2012 — Trained doctors, lawyers, police, and judges in the Democratic Republic of the               Congo, Kenya, and Syria on the proper collection of evidence in sexual               violence cases
  • 2013 — Won first prize in the Tech Challenge for Atrocity Prevention with MediCapt, our               mobile app that documents evidence of torture and sexual violence

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