Sudanese Cops Beat Pants Protesters

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 5, 2009 3:20 AM CDT
Sudanese journalist Lubna Hussein is kissed by a supporter as she enters court in Khartoum, Sudan yesterday.   (AP Photo/Abd Raouf)
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(Newser) – Supporters of a woman facing 40 lashes for wearing trousers were beaten and teargassed by police in Sudan yesterday, the Guardian reports. Some her female supporters wore pants in solidarity with Lubna Hussein, in defiance of the country's law against "indecent dressing." "We are here to protest against this law that oppresses women and debases them," said one woman outside Hussein's court hearing. 

The trial was adjourned to allow prosecutors to decide whether the fact Hussein was working for the UN at the time of her arrest allows her immunity from prosecution. Hussein says she is willing to bring the case to the country's highest court and to receive 40,000 lashes if that is what it takes to change the law, which she considers oppressive and not supported by Islamic scripture. "I am not afraid of flogging," she said after the hearing. "It's about changing the law."