A group calling itself al-Qaeda in Africa has reportedly claimed responsibility for the death of a Sudanese newspaper editor in Khartoum. Mohamed Taha was found beheaded last Wednesday. In the days following Taha's death, Sudanese security has begun cracking down on newspapers in Khartoum.
In April 2005, Taha printed an article that questioned the lineage of the prophet Mohamed. Taha was arrested and his Al Wifaq newspaper closed down. Thousands of demonstrators stood outside the courthouse where he was tried in June 2005, calling for his death; but he was acquitted of the charges.
In the days after Taha's body was found, several local editors reported that their newspapers had been confiscated and that they had given instructions to stop printing articles about Taha's death. Alfred Taban of the independent Khartoum Monitor says Taha's death and the subsequent crackdown on the press are an attempt at intimidation that violates the January 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement, which ended twenty-one years of civil war.