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The South Sudanese government has recalled a diplomat who recently dodged rape charges in New York City due to his diplomatic immunity.
Sudan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced the recall on Thursday after a woman accused Charles Dickens Imene Oliha, 46, of following her into her Washington Heights apartment and raping her twice before leaving, according to police and law enforcement sources.
“The diplomat in question is now back in South Sudan and has been suspended from his duties, awaiting the outcome of this investigation,” the department said in a press release. “The Ministry of Foreign Affairs would like to take this opportunity to reiterate the government of South Sudan’s, and indeed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ position that sexual misconduct in any shape or form is heinous and wholly unacceptable.”
The department added that Sudan’s government “has worked tirelessly” since its inception to “ensure that the rights of women and girls are protected.”
“The mandate of our foreign missions is two-fold,” the Foreign Affairs Ministry continued. “To protect the interests of South Sudanese citizens abroad and to promote strong bilateral relationships with our host countries. It is regretful that in this alleged instance, the latter has been jeopardized.”
Authorities learned soon after the victim reported the incident on Sunday that Oliha was working in the U.S. as a minister of foreign affairs from South Sudan and could not be charged because he had “full diplomatic immunity,” sources said. He was released hours later, before the Sudanese government announced its recall of the suspect on Thursday.
In a statement to Fox News Digital on Tuesday, a State Department spokesperson said the agency was “aware of the incident referenced involving a diplomat accredited to the United Nations.”
“We take these allegations seriously, and we are working closely with the New York Police Department and the Mayor’s Office of International Affairs, as we do in all legal and criminal cases involving foreign diplomats assigned to Permanent Missions and Observer Offices at the UN,” the spokesperson said. “We do not comment on the specifics of ongoing investigations.”
Fox News’ Stephanie Pagones and Danielle Wallace contributed to this report.