The U.S. State Department said late Wednesday that it barred entry to a former director general of Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) over his involvement in human rights violations.
Salah Abdalla Mohamed Mohamed Salih (Salah Gosh) was involved in torture during his tenure as head of NISS, the State Department said. He is banned from entering the U.S. under a law passed in 2018 that allows the State Department to issue such visa bans to foreign officials involved in corruption or human rights violations.
The announcement comes as opposing Sudanese factions held talks in Egypt amid efforts to form a transitional government involving the military and a pro-democracy movement. The military overthrew President Omar al-Bashir earlier this year; he has been wanted by the International Criminal Court since 2009 on allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity for a massacre in Darfur.
“The designation of Salah Gosh and his family underscores our support for accountability for those involved in gross violations of human rights,” the State Department 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,” the statement said, adding that the U.S. seeks a civilian-led government in Sudan that protects human rights.
The State Department has used the visa-ban authority several times in recent weeks, including on sanctioned Venezuelan officials, an Albanian mayor, a Zimbabwean official and, in mid-July, on four top Burmese military officials.