Home Uncategorized Sudan military agrees to reinstate PM and release political detainees

Sudan military agrees to reinstate PM and release political detainees

14
0

Sudan military agrees to reinstate PM and release political detainees

Sudan military agrees to reinstate PM and release political detainees

Hopes for end to crisis undermined as protests continue despite deal between military and civilian political parties

People protest against the military coup in Khartoum, Sudan

Sudan’s military coup leader has announced the release of the detained civilian prime minister, Abdalla Hamdok, and other political prisoners, as the country’s pro-democracy movement vowed to continue with protests.

After weeks of lethal turmoil following the country’s October coup, the agreement to release Hamdok and set up a new largely technocratic cabinet was mediated by US and UN officials.

Hamdok’s release agreement and a deal for a new interim cabinet were signed on Sunday after a meeting between the prime minister and the coup leader, Gen Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, at Khartoum’s presidential palace.

Hopes for a resolution to the almost month-long crisis were undermined as security forces fired teargas at demonstrators suspicious of the military’s continuing ambitions and one of the main pro-democracy blocs immediately rejected it. The deal was announced as the death toll since the coup was launched reached at least 40 after a teenager, reportedly a 16 year old who was shot in the head, succumbed to his wounds.

Announcing the 14-point deal on television, a frail-looking Hamdok extolled the virtues of the “revolution” that brought him to power in 2019. Standing beside him, Burhan thanked Hamdok for his service and vowed that “free and transparent elections” would be held as part of the transitional process.

“He [Hamdok] was patient with us until we reached this moment,” Burhan said before posing for photos with his deputy, Hamdan Dagalo, head of the notorious paramilitary Rapid Support Forces who have been blamed for many of the killings of protesters in the past month.

A source close to Hamdok, a British-educated economist who worked for the UN and African organisations, said he had agreed to the deal to stop the bloodshed but the civilian coalition that shared power with the military previously said it opposed any talks with the “putschists” and called for protests to continue on Sunday.

The coup leader, Gen Burhan, declared a state of emergency on 25 October and ousted the government in a move that upended the two-year transition towards democracy agreed after the overthrow of Omar al-Bashir in 2019 that ended his three decades of autocratic rule.

Sudan pro-democracy activists call for escalation after lethal crackdown

Read more

Hamdok’s release leaves the country facing continuing serious political uncertainty with the military attempting to maintain its increased grip and divisions among the civilian opposition over the arrangement. It was also unclear whether the latest moves could resolve the tensions between military and civilian political parties, not least over the military’s role in Sudan’s stalled political transition.

Sudanese people have been taking to the streets in masses since the military takeover, which upended the country’s fragile transition to democracy. The use of lethal force against protesters by security forces in Sudan following the coup had led to at least 38 deaths in Khartoum, with hundreds more injured.

Reports on social media suggested that despite the announcement of Hamdok’s release, anti-military protesters opposed to any deal with the generals were gathering in a number of locations.

Ashraf Ahmed, from Omdurman, was among those who came to protest in the centre Khartoum on Sunday. “I am just so disappointed by this deal. What about those who have been killed?”

Another protester who gave his name as Awad added: “I will keep going to the streets because the military doesn’t give any guarantees that they will stick by their deals. They always cheat.”

With the military still controlling the country’s interim sovereign council any ministers appointed to the new cabinet will in effect be rubber-stamped by Burhan, leading to questions about whether the deal negotiated between Hamdok and Burhan on Saturday is viable. It said the deal would be signed later Sunday along with a political declaration, but did not elaborate.

Fadlallah Burma Nasir, the head of the Umma party, confirmed the deal. “A political agreement has been reached between General Burhan, Abdalla Hamdok, political forces and civil society organisations for Hamdok’s return to his position, and the release of political detainees,” said Nasir.

The Forces for Freedom and Change, the group that spearheaded the uprising that culminated in Bashir’s ouster, however, announced that they objected to any deals with the military.

In a statement on Sunday, the group reiterated its opposition to any new political partnership with the military, saying the perpetrators of the coup should be brought to justice.

“We are not concerned with any agreements with this brute junta and we are employing all peaceful and creative methods to bring it down,” the statement said.

The group also renewed the call for nationwide protests against military rule.

A constitutional deal struck between the military and civilians in 2019 after Bashir was ousted would remain the foundation in further talks, the source close to Hamdok said.

Sudan’s sovereign council was due to hold an urgent meeting later on Sunday before announcing the agreement, a source with knowledge of the talks said.

Topics

  • Sudan
  • Protest
  • Middle East and North Africa
  • Africa
  • news
  • ” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer” data-ignore=”global-link-styling”>
Reuse this content

Published at Sun, 21 Nov 2021 16:36:20 +0000

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/nov/21/sudan-military-ready-reinstate-pm-release-political-detainees

Previous articleKyle Rittenhouse reacts to acquittal
Next article‘Frustrated’ GOP Rep. John Curtis Wants Voters to Abandon Trump Allies Gaetz, Greene, Boebert