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Sudanese Woman 'Faces 40 Lashes'   
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A Sudanese woman who is due to appear in court in Khartoum says she faces up to 40 lashes for wearing trousers. The woman, Lubna Hussein - a former journalist who now works for the United Nations - has invited journalists and observers to the trial. She was arrested in a restaurant in the capital with other women earlier this month for wearing "indecent" clothing.

She said 10 of the women arrested, including non-Muslims, later each received 10 lashes and a fine of $100. Ms Hussein and two other women asked for a lawyer, delaying their trials. Now Ms Hussein has printed 500 invitation cards and sent out e-mails, saying she wants as many people as possible to attend her hearing on Wednesday. She says she has done nothing wrong under Sharia law, but could fall foul of a paragraph in Sudanese criminal law which forbids indecent clothing.

"I want to change this law, because this law doesn't match in constitution," she told the BBC. "It is important that people know what is happening," Ms Hussein is reported to have written on the invitations she circulated. "They will lash me 40 times, and also fine me 250 Sudanese pounds ($100)."

The BBC's James Copnall in Khartoum says Ms Hussein is determined to generate as much publicity as she can. In a related development, a female journalist who wrote an article critical of the way Ms Hussein has been treated has been charged with defaming the police. Amal Habbani faces a substantial fine if found guilty, AFP news agency reports.
Source: BBC

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