The National Umma Party declares its support to agreement between Burhan and Hamdok

November 28, 2021 at 10:34 am | Published in: AfricaNewsSudan

Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and Abdalla Hamdok sign a political agreement, in Khartoum, Sudan on 21 November 2021. [Sudanese Presidential Palace – Anadolu Agency]

On Friday, the Sudanese National Umma Party (NUP) announced its support for the political agreement between the President of the Sovereign Council Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan and Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok.

This was disclosed by Major General Fadlallah Barama Nasser, the designated head of the party (one of the largest components of the Central Council of the Forces for Freedom and Change), during a television interview with the Sudanese Al-Hilal Channel.

Nasser said: “We described what happened on 25 October as a fully-fledged coup and we will resist it by all peaceful means, but when the situation returned to normalty, we decided to support the political agreement between Al-Burhan and Hamdok with full force.”

Nasser, who worked within a mediation committee to resolve the Sudanese crisis after 25 October, added: “We have returned the Sudanese people to their democratic path.”

He added: “Hamdouk has returned to his work as prime minister and we have succeeded in releasing political detainees and stopping appointments to the civil service. Also, we have fulfilled the street’s aspirations to return to democracy.”

Nasser continued: “Hamdouk was complaining about the political incubant; he wanted to dissolve the government (before October 25) because it is not homogeneous, besides, he wanted the decision to come from the forces of Freedom and Change Declaration, and we should not accuse the man.”

Last Sunday, Hamdok and Al-Burhan signed a political agreement that includes 14 articles most notably the return of Hamdok to his position, about a month after his dismissal by the army, and the formation of a technocrat government without party affiliations.

Sudan has been suffering, a severe crisis since 25 October when Al-Burhan declared a state of emergency, dissolved both the Sovereignty Council, and the provisional Council of Ministers. He also dismissed the governors after the arrest of party leaders, ministers, and officials; which sparked continuous protests that consider what happened as a “military coup.”

US appoints Sudan envoy for the first time in 25 years

November 28, 2021 at 2:11 pm | Published in: Africa

(L to R) Sudan’s Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and Sovereign Council chief General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan attend the opening session of the First National Economic Conference in the capital Khartoum on September 26, 2020. [ASHRAF SHAZLY/AFP via Getty Images]

The US has appointed an ambassador to Sudan for the first time in 25 years, after Washington upgraded its diplomatic representation with Khartoum from Chargé d’Affairs to ambassador.

According to Al-Arabiya, John Godfrey was made US envoy to Khartoum yesterday, becoming the first American ambassador in the country since 1996 when diplomatic relations were severed between the two countries.

In July, Foreign Policy tipped Godfey with being the candidate most likely to become the top US diplomat in the country. At the time, Godfrey was the US State Department’s acting counterterrorism envoy and special envoy for the global coalition against Daesh.

Prior to this, he held several posts across the Middle East and North Africa during his time in the foreign services and between 2013 to 2014, he was chief of staff to the then Deputy Secretary of State, William Burns, who is currently head of the CIA. Godfrey’s experience in the region has been described as advantageous for the US as Sudan transitions towards democracy amid the influence of competing regional powers.

Last month, Sudan’s army chief General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan led a coup, dissolving the transitional government led by Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, detaining dozens of politicians and activists in the process. Following international pressure, Hamdok was reinstated earlier this week after being held under house arrest. However, thousands took to the streets of the capital on Thursday in protest against the military takeover and Hamdok’s decision to renegotiate with the army.

At the end of last year, former US President Donald Trump agreed to revoke Sudan’s state sponsor of terrorism designation, after Khartoum was pressured into normalising relations with Israel. Sudan also agreed to pay $335 million in compensation to the families of victims of terrorism allegedly sponsored by Sudan. Sudan was placed on the list in 1993, after then president Omar Al-Bashir hosted Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in his country.

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SUDAN MILITARY COUP: WHAT HAPPENED AND WHY IT STILL MATTERS

NOVEMBER 24TH, 2021
topics: DEMOCRACY
by: Olusegun Akinfenwa
located in: Sudan

On 25 October, the Sudanese military, led by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, took control of the government in a coup. Some top government officials, including civilian Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, were initially detained for their refusal to declare support for the coup. For days after the coup, civilians put up a campaign of civil resistance against the military junta as they called for the reinstatement of the dissolved government. And while Hamdok has since been reinstated, the path to democracy in the country and region remains long and murky.

Weeks after the coup, the military bowed to domestic and international pressure and reinstated the prime minister; it had promised to release other political detainees as well. But despite that, the streets of the capital, Khartoum, are still engulfed in protests as the wider implications of the coup persist.

The current political tussle can be traced to the fall of the former Omar al-Bashir’s National Congress Party government in 2019, which brought an end to 30 years of authoritarian rule and ushered in a civilian-military power-sharing administration. The military faction was headed by al-Burhan, while Hamdok presided as a civilian Prime Minister.

However, for several months, there had been rancour between the civilian and military factions of the council, with each blaming the other for the current deterioration of economic conditions. This divided the country between proponents of pro-civilian rule and pro-military rule.

In September, there was widespread tension following an attempted coup, which was later simmered, 25 until October, when the coup eventually happened. 

DEPOSED PRIME MINISTER REINSTATED BY THE MILITARY

On Sunday, 21 November, the military reinstated Hamdok after keeping him under home arrest for weeks. He appeared on state TV to sign a new deal with al-Burhan. Under the agreement, Hamdok will lead a civilian cabinet of technocrats for a transitional period. The reinstated prime minister said he agreed to the new deal to prevent more casualties.

“Sudanese blood is precious. Let us stop the bloodshed and direct the youth’s energy into building and development,” he stated at a signing ceremony of the deal.

PROTEST CONTINUES AS PRO-DEMOCRACY ACTIVISTS OPPOSE THE DEAL

Just like any military takeover, the coup came with various humanitarian and economic downturns that persist despite the new arrangement.

The civilian coalition of activists that nominated Hamdok in 2019 opposed the new deal as pro-democracy protesters accused him of being a sell-out.

“Hamdok has sold the revolution,” protesters chanted after the new agreement was announced. A leading protest group, the Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA), said it is “treacherous.”

Security forces fired tear gas to disperse the protesting crowd as tens of thousands of people participated in scheduled rallies in Khartoum and other cities. It is unclear how much power the civilian government will have under the new agreement, as it will be subject to military oversight. It also made no mention of the civilian collation that was in power before the coup, the Forces of Freedom and Change (FFC).

PERSISTENT HUMANITARIAN IMPACTS

Successive Sudanese governments have performed poorly in the area of human rights protection. Events of the past weeks since the coup have once again shown security officials’ innate appetite for excessive use of force against the masses. Many civilians taking part in pro-democracy demonstrations have been killed, detained and injured by security personnel.

Salma Elkhazin, a surgeon at Khartoum’s private Care Royal hospital, where many of the victims are being treated,  lamented the brutality against people fighting for their rights.

“It’s heartbreaking to see those young people, the ones that have been killed, asking for what’s rightfully theirs: for a free country with a civilian government,” Elkhazin told BBC.

Unlawful killings, arbitrary detentions, tortures and other ill-treatments are inherent in the system and have been used by governments to suppress dissent.

In an emergency session on Friday, 5 November, the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council adopted a resolution condemning the coup and delegating an envoy to monitor alleged violations in Sudan.

UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet, who spoke during the session, condemned the ongoing clampdown and urged the military to end their violence against the masses.

“This disproportionate and deadly use of force by the Sudan Armed Forces, the Rapid Support Forces, and other security forces – including military police and intelligence elements – must end immediately,” said Bachelet. “Those responsible for these and other human rights violations must be held fully accountable for their actions.”

On Sunday, 21 November, a 16-year-old boy protesting the new deal died from a bullet wound in Khartoum’s twin city Omdurman, the Central Committee of Sudanese Doctors announced.

Medics said the overall death toll since the coup has reached 41.

The gross human rights violations also extend to communication rights. During the 2019 crisis, mobile internet was shut down, leaving the country offline for 36 days. Though there is no total shutdown this time around, people in Sudan have been experiencing significant disruption to internet service since 25 October.

A report by AllAfrica from October 2021 shows that the national connectivity on the day of the coup only reached 34 percent of ordinary levels. Sudan has blocked the internet four times within the past three years, an indication that the al-Bashir’s led military intends to follow the footsteps of past governments in limiting people’s freedom of expression and flow of information.

ECONOMIC IMPACTS

For several years, Sudan has endured a series of economic downturns, including a high unemployment rate and food insecurity. Due to the volatile situation in the country, it has also suffered a dearth of international monetary support and debt relief until the recent transition. The economic issue has been the main basis of recent protests, including the ousting of Bashir and this latest coup.

Immigration Advice Service gathered that various international bodies expressed dissatisfaction following the coup and cut their support. The World Bank, which has contributed around $3 billion to Sudan, announced the suspension of its aid to the country. The United States has also frozen $700 million in aid to Sudan. Similarly, the African Union suspended Sudan from the bloc over the “unconstitutional” power takeover.

The continued protests have also dealt a blow to economic activities in the country. Days after the coup, the country grappled with a severe cash shortage as most cash machines and banks were closed. A report shows that 90 percent of bankers took part in the civil disobedience campaign.

“We stand firmly against any military action and any form of dictatorship,” the Sudanese Banking Association’s spokesperson, Abdul Rashid Khalifa said some days after the coup.

Even before the coup, unemployment had been incredibly high and food shortages were rising at an alarming rate. The situation was exacerbated by the recent COVID-19 lockdowns and severe floods, which affected food production.

In view of the latest development, the reinstated Hamdok and his new cabinet may have an uphill task in convincing the international bodies to mend the severed relationships.

Though Western powers, including Britain, the United States, Norway, Canada, Switzerland and the European Union welcomed the reinstatement of Hamdok, it remains to be seen when the lost economic alliances will be regained.

IMPACTS ON DEMOCRATIC RULE DOMESTICALLY AND REGIONALLY

Domestically, the coup threatens the hard-won journey to democratic transition in Sudan, and regionally – the young and fragile democracies in sub-Saharan Africa.

The earlier dissolution of the transitional government and declaration of a state of emergency by the military junta could be an indication that the country is still within the shackles of military dictatorship.

Also, looking at the military’s use of force against protesters in recent demonstrations, it is hard to anticipate any semblance of civility or respect of human rights in its leadership, given the antecedents of its two highest-ranking members.

In 2019, Al-Burhan was accused of being the military architect behind the genocide in Darfur. He was quoted to have described himself as “the Lord of the people of Darfur and authorised to kill them when, as, and how he wants.”

Similarly, the Rapid Support Forces leader Mohamed Hamdan Hemedti, who alongside al-Burhan anchored the military faction of the dissolved council, was at the forefront of the scorched earth campaign in Khartoum’s June 2019 massacre.

With these two still part of the system, the question remains whether Sudan will experience a truly democratic rule anytime soon.

The coup’s wider implications could also tell on other sub-Saharan African countries, as the hard-earned democratic progress made since the 1990s is now being threatened by the resurgence of power-seeking military officials.

The Sudan coup made it the fourth military takeover between August 2020 and October 2021 in a region that has had a long history of political instability.

A study shows that between 1956 and 2001, sub-Saharan Africa experienced 80 successful coups and 108 failed coup attempts, representing an average of four in a year. However, the past two decades witnessed a significant reduction in coups, as more countries embrace democracy.

Unfortunately, this hard-earned milestone in civil rules, which cost some people their lives, is now being threatened by the resurgence of power-seeking militaries. The recent string of coups occurred in Mali in August 2020 and May 2021, Chad in April 2021, Guinea in September 2021, and Sudan in October 2021.

If this pattern is sustained, more militaries from other countries may want to continue experimenting with it as a viable means to grab power, which poses wider implications for instability, given the already persistent insecurity in the region.

Crucially, the growing trend of military takeovers could also escalate the refugee crisis in the region.

SUDAN’S IDENTITY CRISIS

Also at stake is the very identity of Sudan, which formed the major demands during the 2019 uprising. The protest leaders almost achieved their goal of carving a desirous new identity of a democratic state for Sudan until a sudden twist of fate, which resulted in the dissolved joint military-civilian rule rather than a true civilian administration.

On paper, though, the Sovereign Council was jointly headed by both military and civilian leaders, the civilian members found themselves outmaneuvered, sidelined and frustrated by the military members.

A former civilian member who resigned from the government in May, Aisha Musa Sayeed, accused the military component of sidelining its civilian counterpart and making unilateral decisions.

She alleged that the military officials were “overriding constitutional powers,” thereby rendering the civilian component a mere logistical executive body only, who don’t participate in decision making but only accept what has been agreed upon.”

Even before the coup, the military faction’s actions and inactions since the formation of the council made many doubt their sincerity in handing over to an elected government in 2023.

Coupled with their numerous shady businesses, the military leaders were also alleged to be getting supports from some foreign organisations and individuals, including from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and UAE. Much of the revenue from the military holding companies allegedly bypasses government coffers and goes into private accounts abroad.

These numerous streams of income and international connections made it easy for the military faction to outmuscle the civilian side of the government.

Within its six decades of independence, Sudan had fractured into various types of leaderships, including informal and formal armed forces, hard-line Islamist sects, armed militias and political parties – all struggling for the soul of the country and claiming to represent the will of the people.

Though a new civilian cabinet has been formed, there are indications it will be under the oversight of the military leaders. Besides, the military-civilian power-sharing arrangement isn’t the true identity the Sudanese masses want for their country.

Image by UNMISS.ARTICLE WRITTEN BY:

Olusegun Akinfenwa
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12 Sudanese ministers resign in protest of deal with military

PM Abdalla Hamdok reinstated after signing political agreement with Sudan’s ruling military council

Talal Ismail   |22.11.2021

KHARTOUM, Sudan

Twelve cabinet ministers on Monday submitted their resignation to Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, in protest of a political deal with the country’s ruling military council.

On Sunday, Hamdok was reinstated after signing a political agreement with the head of Sudan’s ruling military council, Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, to end a weeks-long crisis that threatened to undermine Sudan’s political transition.

While the deal was largely welcomed by the international community, Sudanese political forces have rejected it as an “attempt to legitimize the coup”.

The resigned ministers include the ministers of foreign affairs, justice, agriculture, irrigation, investment and energy, according to a statement issued by the ministers.

The ministers of higher education, labor, transport, health, youth and religious affairs also tendered their resignation.

The statement said the five ministers of the Forces of Freedom and Change (FFC) coalition, which had shared power with the military before last month’s military takeover, were unable to attend Monday’s cabinet meeting.

The ministers did not explain the reason behind their resignation.

The resigned ministers were part of a transitional government led by Hamdok that was dissolved on Oct. 25 by al-Burhan.

At the time, al-Burhan declared a state of emergency and dismissed the transitional government, amid rival protests and accusations between the military and politicians.

Scores have been killed since the Oct. 25 military takeover amid protests calling for civilian rule.

* Writing by Ibrahim Mukhtar

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Refugees count their losses as floods destroy camp in Sudan

Months after its creation, Alganaa refugee camp in Sudan’s White Nile State has been submerged by flood waters, leaving some 35,000 South Sudanese refugees in need of urgent assistance.

By Sylvia Nabanoba in White Nile State, Sudan  |  23 November 2021   

Alganaa refugee camp in Sudan’s White Nile State was submerged by flood waters, leaving some 30,000 South Sudanese refugees in need of urgent assistance. © UNHCR/Sylvia Nabanoba

Nyawiga Toch looks out over the water that covers Alganaa refugee camp in Sudan’s White Nile State. She can’t believe that barely a month ago, the camp was bustling with life. 

Today, the small mud and papyrus houses that neatly crisscrossed its expanse and the shops that lined its boundaries are no more. The only remaining structures are three shops and some containers that were to be used as registration offices by UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency.

The thirty-five-year-old mother of five and her husband were forced to leave their home in Fangak, South Sudan in May this year, after heavy rains destroyed their crops and home. 

“We were left homeless and hungry,” she says.

Her family was among some 30,000 South Sudanese who fled across the border due to flooding, lack of food and insecurity. Alganaa was opened by UNHCR and Sudan’s Commission for Refugees (COR) in February of this year, becoming the tenth camp in White Nile state, which currently hosts over 280,000 South Sudanese refugees. 

“We had a new home. Now, once more, we have nothing.”

In Alganaa, Nyawiga and her family set up their new home just before the rainy season came in July.

“At first, the water would dry up in a few days after the rain. Then, one day we woke up to find water flowing into the camp. It increased gradually, surrounding our houses, until we realized that we could no longer stay there,” Nyawiga explains.

The refugees fled, finding sanctuary with relatives and friends, and in public facilities like schools and hospitals in nearby Dabat Bosin and Alagaya camps. So far, over 2,000 displaced refugees have been moved from schools to communal shelters.

Nyawiga and her family are currently living in a communal shelter with other refugees as they wait to be relocated to another site.

“We had a new home. We had re-established ourselves. Now, once more, we have nothing,” she says sadly. 

Availability of suitable land remains a serious challenge to finding them a more permanent home, further compounded by the large number of refugees who keep arriving in the country. In the meantime, UNHCR is providing them with relief, including sleeping mats, kitchen sets and jerrycans. 

The local Sudanese community that offered the land where Alganaa camp was established were not spared from the flooding. Hussein Albashar, 35, grew up in a house close to the destroyed camp.

“I was born in this village and have lived here with my family ever since. Our house always withstood the rains until this year,” he says.

His family, including his elderly parents, now live in a temporary shelter provided by UNHCR. Unlike many of the other affected families, he decided to stay close to his old house, determined to rebuild it as soon as possible.

“I can’t leave the place I have always called home. I only hope next year’s rains will not be as bad as this,” he says. 

Floods have displaced over 314,000 people across Sudan this year and resulted in loss of lives, homes, crops and livestock, according to the UN. 

Kofi Dwomo, the Head of UNHCR’s office in White Nile State, believes the flooding is due to climate change. 

“Although it rains every year, the impact is usually not this destructive,” he says.

Neighbouring South Sudan, where the majority of the refugees in Sudan come from, is also experiencing the worst flooding the country has seen in decades. The floods which engulfed Alganaa flowed into Sudan following heavy rains in South Sudan’s Upper Nile State.

“I only hope next year’s rains will not be as bad as this.”

Dwomo says what happened in Alganaa is “a clear sign that changes in climatic patterns and environmental conservation need to be taken more into account” and urges the authorities, civil society and local communities to continue collaborating on actions to avert future catastrophes.

Sudanese communities affected by recent flooding receive relief items like plastic sheets, blankets, kitchen sets and jerrycans. © UNHCR/Vanessa Zola

While land here is generally flood-prone due to the mostly flat terrain, Dwomo says improving drainage systems and constructing dykes has proved effective in reducing flooding in other camps.

UNHCR also runs a reforestation programme in White Nile in partnership with Sudan’s Forests National Corporation. Tree nurseries are producing thousands of seedlings each year which refugees and locals plant around camps and in designated forest areas.

“Reforestation is crucial as it restores the forest cover in areas where trees have been cut down for firewood and for shelter materials,” explains Dwomo.

There is still hope that Alganaa can be salvaged, depending on the findings of a technical assessment.  

Nyawiga wishes only to find a place where she and her family can finally settle. 

“I just want a home for my family where we can be safe,” she says.

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Sudanese PM’s release is only small step in resolving crisis

Analysis: deal satisfies some international demands but route to democratic transition after fall of Omar al-Bashir remains unclear

Gen Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, left, and Abdalla Hamdok at the signing of the deal to release the detained Sudanese prime minister. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

The deal to secure the release of the detained Sudanese prime minister, Abdalla Hamdok, signed by Hamdok and Gen Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, who seized power in a military coup on 25 October, leaves Sudan in a continuing crisis.

While the agreement satisfies some of the immediate demands of the international community and mediators from the US and UN – not least securing the release of Hamdok and other political detainees – it leaves many of the country’s most serious issues in its political transition unresolved.

At the heart of Sudan’s problems since the fall of its longtime authoritarian ruler Omar al-Bashir in 2019 has been the role of the military and security forces, accountability for the crimes committed during Bashir’s rule, and the question of how to build a comprehensive and inclusive political settlement that can incorporate the demands of the country’s rebel movements.

While the arrangement following the ousting of Bashir removed him from the scene, it also fudged many of those issues, leaving the military in a dominant position, not least at the head of the transitional sovereign council.

A major driver of the current and extended crisis in recent weeks and months has been the post-Bashir transitional timetable, which should have seen civilians take the driving seat on the sovereign council, and led to concerns in senior military circles that their long-lasting political and economic interests would be undermined.

Worse still was the military’s anxiety that senior figures – Burhan included – might be held responsible for the killings of protesters that occurred in 2019 at the end of Bashir’s time in power, and other crimes committed during the Bashir period.

Sunday’s deal appears to answer few of those issues. It reaffirms the constitutional arrangement and 2020 Juba peace agreement, initially signed with a number (but not all) of the country’s warring groups, leaving a route to a democratic transition still unclear.

While Hamdok has agreed to an arrangement that satisfies the military in one respect – delivering a less fractious and more compliant technocratic cabinet with himself at its head – it will leave many in the pro-democracy camp, who want the military to retreat from politics entirely, highly suspicious of the generals’ future ambitions.

For all sides it remains a highly risky undertaking. For the military it suggests that their position is perhaps not as strong as they would have liked to suggest, not least in the face of continuing protests, even with their use of deadly force.

On the civilian side, Hamdok’s agreement to the new interim arrangement has the potential to undermine the already fractious camp.

The main civilian bloc that spearheaded the anti-Bashir protests and signed a 2019 power-sharing deal with the military was swift to reject Sunday’s agreement, and protests over the deal continued in a number of cities.

“We affirm our clear and previously declared position that there is no negotiation, no partnership, no legitimacy for the coup,” the mainstream faction of the Forces for Freedom and Change coalition said in a statement.

With little clarity and all sides still jostling for advantage, there seems little prospect that Sudan’s problems are over.

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Sudan’s reinstated PM Hamdok resumes duties

Sudan’s reinstated prime-minister, Abdalla Hamdok Photo-link here.

Sudan’s reinstated prime-minister, Abdalla Hamdok, said on Monday that he will have the authority to form an independent government.

His comments took place one day after signing a deal with the military that almost one month earlier staged a coup and placed him under house arrest.

Hamdok, who was re-elected as prime minister with the Sovereignty Council in Sudan, signed a political agreement on Sunday in order to end the management crisis that followed the military intervention on October 25th.

As part of the deal, Burhan rescinded his decision to dismiss Hamduk as prime minister.

The Prime Minister’s Office also reported that Hamduk had officially taken up his duties.

“This is a key part of the political agreement we signed, that the prime minister should have the power and the authority to form an independent and technocratic government in absolute liberty and without any pressures. This is what we signed the agreement for.

I’d like to speak frankly, I don’t have any personal ambitions, to remain a figurehead or to join a particular party or group, or to gain higher popularity. I’m only driven by the responsibility placed on my shoulders. I am guided only by the ambitions and hopes of the Sudanese people”, admitted Abdalla Hamdok, Sudan’s reinstated prime minister.

According to Sudanese medical sources, since the October coup that at least 41 people have lost their lives in protests.

“The agreement is part of solving the problem because this needs a solution. Hamdok’s speech is convincing because he saw the killing of young people in the streets and the country is going backwards, which does not lead to improving the situation” said Omar Sayed, a Sudanese resident.

Others, such as Sudanese resident Ahmed Seif, expressed their disappointment.

“After people put their hopes and ambitions on Hamdok, he signed in the end. We are actually shocked, but Hamdok will fall and the street will say its opinion in the end”, he said.

The country’s leading political opposition parties have said they reject the deal with the generals.

During the signing of the agreement with the military, Hamdok said that his main goal was to stop the ongoing bloodshed of the country’s youth.

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Sudan Military Reinstates Deposed Leader

In this photo provided by the Sudan Transitional Sovereign Council, Sudan’s top general Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, center left, and Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok hold documents during a ceremony to reinstate Hamdok.

Sudan’s military Sunday reinstated deposed Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok to lead a civilian government of technocrats after weeks of deadly unrest triggered by his overthrow.

Civilian and military leaders said government officials and politicians arrested since the coup in late October will be released as part of the deal between the military and political parties, including the largest Umma Party.

Hamdok will lead an independent technocratic Cabinet, the officials said. They said the United Nations, the United States and others played “crucial roles” in crafting the agreement.

The coup had drawn international criticism, with the U.S., its allies and the U.N. condemning attacks on anti-coup protesters.

As the agreement became known in Khartoum, the capital, security forces fired tear gas to disperse protesters as they approached the presidential palace. Shortly after the pact was signed, some began shouting, “Hamdok has sold the revolution.”

Hamdok said he had agreed to the deal to stop the bloodshed.

“Sudanese blood is precious; let us stop the bloodshed and direct the youth’s energy into building and development,” he said.

The U.N. Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan welcomed the recent developments.

“We stress the need to protect the constitutional order to safeguard the basic freedoms of political action, freedom of speech, and peaceful assembly. The transition partners will need to urgently address unresolved issues to complete the political transition in an inclusive manner, with respect for human rights and the rule of law,” a UNITAMS statement said.

“We call on all parties to the political process in Sudan to include the voices of the youth to address the demands of the Sudanese people. Women’s meaningful participation and the advancement of their hard-earned rights and role in the democratic transition must be maintained.”

The civilian coalition that had shared power with the military said it was opposed to talks with the “putschists” and called for protests to continue. Resistance committees that had been organizing protests also rejected the new deal with the military.

The Forces of Freedom and Change (FFC) civilian coalition, which had been sharing power with the military, said it did not recognize any agreement with the armed forces.

“We affirm our clear and previously announced position: no negotiation and no partnership and no legitimacy for the putschists,” the FFC said in a statement.

Hamdok had been under house arrest since the military seized power on Oct. 25. His ouster derailed a transition toward democracy after the overthrow of Omar al-Bashir and his Islamist government in 2019 that ended his three decades of autocratic rule.

The coup triggered mass demonstrations against the military, with medics aligned with the protest movement saying that security forces had killed 40 civilians in the violence.

Some information in this report came from Reuters and the Associated Press.

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Sudan’s military reinstates Abdalla Hamdok as civilian ruler amid protests!

Hamdok will lead a civilian government of technocrats for a transitional period

21 NOVEMBER 2021 – 19:23KHALID ABDELAZIZ

Sudan's Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok. Picture: SARAH MEYSSONNIER/REUTERS
Sudan’s Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok. Picture: SARAH MEYSSONNIER/REUTERS

Khartoum — Sudan’s military reinstated Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok on Sunday and announced the release of all political detainees after weeks of deadly unrest triggered by a coup.

Under an agreement signed with military leader Gen Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, Hamdok will lead a civilian government of technocrats for a transitional period.

Security forces fired tear gas to disperse protesters as they approached the presidential palace ahead of the announcement of the deal.

Shortly after it was signed, some began shouting: “Hamdok has sold the revolution.”

Hamdok said he had agreed to the deal to stop the bloodshed. “Sudanese blood is precious, let us stop the bloodshed and direct the youth’s energy into building and development,” he said.

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.

Several of the resistance committees that have been organising protests also put out statements rejecting any deal with the military.

Hamdok was placed under house arrest when the military seized power on October 25, derailing a transition towards democracy agreed after the overthrow of Omar al-Bashir in 2019 that ended his three decades of autocratic rule.

The military dissolved Hamdok’s cabinet and detained a number of civilians who held top positions under the power-sharing deal agreed with the military after Bashir was ousted.

The coup triggered mass demonstrations against the military and medics aligned with the protest movement say security forces have killed 40 civilians in increasingly violent crackdowns.

The constitutional declaration 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.

Activist groups leading the protests since the coup have demanded the military gets out of politics altogether, however.

The Forces of Freedom and Change (FFC) civilian coalition, which had been sharing power with the military, said it did not recognise any agreement with the armed forces.

“We affirm our clear and previously announced position: no negotiation and no partnership and no legitimacy for the putschists,” the FFC said in a statement.

Those who carried out and backed the coup should face justice, it said, calling on people to turn out for the latest round of anti-military protests on Sunday.

Following the coup, Hamdok had demanded the release of all political detainees and a return to power-sharing as a precondition for negotiating, according to sources close to him.

Western powers that had backed Sudan’s political transition condemned the takeover and suspended some economic assistance to Sudan.

https://www.businesslive.co.za/bd/world/2021-11-21-sudans-military-reinstates-abdalla-hamdok-as-civilian-ruler-amid-protests/

Reuters

14 South Sudanese Graduates Stranded in Zimbabwe 2 Days After Glittering University Capping!

November 21, 2021

Some of the South Sudanese graduates who completed studies at the National University of Science and Technology and are stranded in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. (Photo: Ezra Tshisa Sibanda)
Some of the South Sudanese graduates who completed studies at the National University of Science and Technology and are stranded in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. (Photo: Ezra Tshisa Sibanda)

MARYLAND — 

Fourteen South Sudanese nationals, who graduated Friday at the National University of Science and Technology in Zimbabwe’s second largest city, Bulawayo, say they are stranded following their government’s failure to provide them air tickets to return home. Their representative, Makuei Maker Chuny, said they have no food and accommodation due to lack of funds.

He told VOA Zimbabwe Service that they have tried in vain to get help from the Sudanese Embassy in Harare with indications that they won’t get help anytime soon.

“We have been here for six years and government was supposed to provide us two-way tickets, coming and going. Already we have only used one ticket, that is, coming from South Sudan to Zimbabwe … This is a very desperate situation. The school now is going to be closed, there would be no water supply on campus, no electricity. How can you survive? Moreover, we used to have a warden here but now there is no warden. We will be left in the building alone and it’s not good for our health.

“We are asking the government of South Sudan to provide us with air tickets as soon as possible. This should be done before the end of this week. We want to go home. If they don’t do that, we are going to occupy the embassy (South Sudan) as we have been doing because we are compelled by the situation. At the embassy it’s also not convenient for us. This should be a good ending. It should not be a bad ending. We have been struggling, we have been suffering here. They have not been consistent in sending money and sometimes we were evicted … We are urging our government to help us.”

Chuny said it was unimaginable that his nation is failing to pay air tickets for few students.

“We are very few. We are 14 only. How can the whole nation fail to transport for 14 people? We thought this was not going to take even a week. I have written to many offices for two months asking them to provide tickets to my student colleagues but nothing has been done.

Our government hasn’t told us when they are going to provide us with tickets. I have been trying to communicate but nothing has come out clearly. So, I’m using this happening (graduation ceremony) in the presence of South Sudanese students in Zimbabwe to urge the government of South Sudan to provide our (air) tickets as soon as possible.”
He said they are ready to help their nation with skills they have acquired in Zimbabwe.

“We don’t want to be still here next week when we are already done with school. We have a lot of things. We have a lot of things that we can provide the country. The country does not have water supplies and here I’m with the skills which I’m able to provide. I was working with Bulawayo City Council and the (water) stations where I was are already operational. So, it is wise for the government of South Sudan to give us air tickets so we can go home quickly and then we settle and work on how we can deliver these services based on the skills that we have acquired in Zimbabwe.”

Chuny said the South Sudanese president should intervene as education officials are not helping them.

“… We are asking our president Salva Kiir (Mayardit) who is the one who provided us with these scholarships and he still has the powers to take us back home. It’s not good for someone who has graduated to remain in the same place.”

HE claimed that the country’s representatives in Zimbabwe have not been able to pay the air tickets for the students, who are desperate to go home.

“We have spoken to him (ambassador) but he dosen’t have the powers. He has been trying to go around asking people to assist but no one has responded as of now. I have also sent a delegation of those that graduated last year who are in Juba to pursue this issue of tickets but they have been thrown out of some offices, which is not good.

“We are not begging, we are citizens of South Sudan, we were brought here legally with the approval of the parliament of South Sudan and that whenever we finish here we will have our return tickets. Why are there no return tickets when we are done with the graduation.?

You have been here for six years.”

South Sudanese officials in Harare did not respond to calls and messages sent on their mobile phones about the students’ plight.

https://www.voazimbabwe.com/a/south-sudanese-students-stranded-in-harare/6321711.html