What does Sudan’s constitutional declaration say?

Long-awaited document paves the way for civilian rule after Omar al-Bashir’s removal in the face of mass protests. 5 August, 2019

A formal signing in front of foreign dignitaries is due to take place on August 17 in Khartoum .

Hundreds of people have taken to the streets of Sudan’s capital, Khartoum, chanting revolutionary songs and waving national flags after the country’s military rulers and opposition coalition signed a hard-won constitutional declaration.

The document, initialled on Sunday, paves the way for a transition to civilian rule following the toppling of longtime President Omar al-Bashir in April. 

It sets the shape of an interim government that will govern Sudan for a transitional period of three years until elections are held. 

Envoys from the African Union and Ethiopia brokered the talks that resulted in the constitutional declaration. Negotiations between the ruling Transitional Military Council (TMC) and the Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) coalition stalled repeatedly amid deadly violence against protesters who kept up demonstrations demanding civilian rule. 

A formal signing of the document will take place in front of foreign dignitaries on August 17.

The following day, the generals and protest leaders are expected to announce the composition of the sovereign council which will replace the TMC.

Here is what the new agreement entails:

  • The transitional period will last for 36 months from the day of the signing of the constitutional declaration. 
  • There will be a sovereign council, which will oversee the creation of a council of ministers and a legislative council.
  • The sovereign council will be an 11-member governing body, which will rule the country for just over three years. The body will be composed of five military personnel chosen by the TMC and five civilians selected by the FFC. The 11th member will be a civilian chosen by consensus between the two parties.
  • The sovereign council will be headed by a military general during the first 21 months, followed by a civilian for the remaining 18 months.
  • The FFC will appoint the prime minister.
  • The prime minister will name a cabinet of 20 ministers from a list of nominees presented by the FFC, excluding the interior and defence ministers. The latter pair will be appointed by the military members on the sovereign council. 
  • Legal action cannot be taken against members of the three councils without permission from the legislative council. The decision to lift immunity would require the approval of a majority of legislators. 
  • The legislative council will be independent. Its members cannot exceed 300 people, and at least 40 percent of the seats will be reserved for women.
  • The FFC will appoint 67 percent of the legislative council’s members, while other political groups that are not associated with al-Bashir will select the rest. 
  • Sudan’s armed forces and its paramilitary Rapid Support Forces will be led by the commander of the armed forces, who is also the head of the sovereign council.
  • The council of ministers may ask the sovereign council to announce a state of national emergency if the unity and safety of the country are at risk. Such a request must be presented to the legislative council within 15 days, and will become invalid if the assembly fails to approve it. 
  • New policies will be developed over the next six months in consultation with armed groups in various regions of the country to achieve comprehensive and lasting peace. 

The constitutional declaration also contains a chapter on rights and freedoms for Sudanese citizens. It says:

  • Everyone is equal before the law.
  • No one shall be arbitrarily arrested unless for reasons stipulated by law.
  • No one shall be subject to torture, humiliation, or ill-treatment.
  • The state will protect the social, civil, political, cultural, and economic rights of women, which shall be equal to those of men.
  • Everyone has the right to a fair trial; the accused is innocent until proven guilty in accordance with the law.
  • Every citizen has the right to express themselves freely without limitations, and has the right to receive or publish information and access the media in accordance with the law.
  • Every citizen has the right to access the internet in accordance with the law.
  • Everyone has the right to peaceful assembly and the right to create and/or join political parties, NGOs, syndicates, and professional unions
  • https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/08/sudan-constitutional-declaration-190804182241137.html
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Ousted Sudanese President al-Bashir’s trial postponed to August 15.

Staff writer, Al Arabiya English Wednesday, 31 July 2019

(File photo: AFP)

Ousted Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir’s trial on corruption charges has been postponed to August 15.

In April, Sudan’s army ruler General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan said that more than $113 million worth of cash in three currencies had been seized from Bashir’s residence.

He said a team of police, army and security agents found seven million euros ($7.8 million), $350,000 and five billion Sudanese pounds ($105 million).

Sudan suffered high rates of corruption during Bashir’s rule, ranking 172 out of 180 countries in Transparency International’s 2018 Corruption Perceptions Index

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2019/07/31/Ousted-Sudanese-president-al-Bashir-s-trial-postponed-to-August-15.html

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Sudan’s schools shut after student deaths

31 July, 2019.Ruling military council orders nationwide schools closure after schoolchildren die in Monday protest

See video in web article. Link here.

Sudan’s ruling Transitional Military Council has ordered all schools in the country shut for an indefinite period after security forces killed four students in El-Obeid city on Monday as they were protesting over the rising costs of living.

Following their funerals, similar protests broke out across Sudan, calling for justice for the repeated attacks on demonstrators.

This complicates the political process, now in a deadlock after the ruling military government agreed on an initial deal, yet to be fleshed out, with the opposition bloc.

Al Jazeera’s Hiba Morgan reports from Addis Ababa in neighbouring Ethiopia.

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/07/sudans-schools-shut-student-deaths-190731043509911.html

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Hope and Resurrection school in Western Lakes reopens.

RUMBEK – 29 Jul 2019

Hope and Resurrection Secondary School in South Sudan’s Western Lakes State reopened on 8 July, almost two months after the killing of two of the school’s teachers.

On May 26, two Ugandan teachers of the secondary school were shot and killed by gunmen in Atiaba area.

Speaking to Radio Tamazuj on Friday, the school administrator, Deborah Awut Mayom said the closure of the secondary school followed the May 26 incident in which the two teachers were killed.

“We were supposed to reopen the school on May 27, 2019 and before reopening is when the teachers were killed. We sent other teachers back home for one month,” Awut said.

She added, “So on July 8, 2019, the Uganda teachers who had been sent home to mourn reported back to Hope and Resurrection secondary school and the school reopened on July 10, 2018”.

Awut further said a few issues arose between the school and host community, but were resolved before the school officially reopened. “All of us have a mission to run the school,” she stressed.

Awut urged authorities to apprehend those who killed the two teachers. “We heard that the state government has arrested relatives of the suspects who killed the two Ugandan teachers, but no real suspect has been apprehended. This is a shame on the government,” she said.

According to Awut, a suspect arrested by authorities in connection with the incident escaped leaving behind his AK-47 rifle.

The school has nine Ugandan teachers and five from South Sudan.

https://radiotamazuj.org/en/news/article/hope-and-resurrection-school-in-western-lakes-reopens

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Sudan Power-Sharing Deal Reached by Military and Civilian Leaders

Protesters celebrated in Khartoum on Friday after ruling generals and protest leaders announced a governing agreement.CreditCreditAshraf Shazly/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

By Declan Walsh

  • July 4, 2019

Sudan’s military and civilian leaders announced on Friday that they had reached an agreement to share power until elections, promising an end to the standoff that has paralyzed the African country since the ouster of President Omar Hassan al-Bashir in April.

The two sides, which resumed talks this week after a monthlong hiatus that included a bloody crackdown by the military, have agreed to form a joint military-civilian authority to run Sudan during an interim period of just over three years, a senior protest leader said.

Power will rotate between military and civilian leaders during the transitional period, a mediator from the African Union, Mohamed Hassan Lebatt, told a news conference in Khartoum. Then, elections are to be held and the military is to return to its barracks, ushering in democratic rule.

“We hope that this is the beginning of a new era,” said Omar al-Degair, a leader of the coalition negotiating with the military.

Gen. Mohamed Hamdan, center, known as Hemeti, has been widely seen as the most powerful figure in Sudan since his Rapid Support Forces led a bloody crackdown on protesters in June.CreditYasuyoshi Chiba/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Gen. Mohamed Hamdan, deputy head of the Transitional Military Council, said, “This agreement is comprehensive and does not exclude anyone.”

[Read about how the power-sharing deal came about.]

A military general will lead the joint council for the first 21 months, then a civilian leader will lead for 18 months, said Amjad Farid, a leader of the Sudanese Professionals Association.

The streets of Omdurman, Khartoum’s twin city across the Nile River, erupted in celebration when the news broke, according to Reuters. Thousands of people of all ages took to the streets, chanting “Civilian! Civilian! Civilian!”

Young men banged drums, people honked their car horns, and women carrying Sudanese flags chanted in jubilation.

The deal appeared to be the culmination of a popular uprising that started in December with a demonstration against the soaring price of bread, then morphed into a movement that led to the removal of Mr. al-Bashir after 30 years of turbulent and often brutal rule.

After President Omar Hassan al-Bashir’s ouster, many protesters were dismayed to see power pass into the hands of his top lieutenants, including officials accused of war crimes.CreditBryan Denton for The New York Times

The two sides also agreed to open what they said was an independent investigation into the violence that began on June 3 when military forces cracked down on protesters, which has led to at least 128 deaths, according to the protesters. General Hamdan, known as Hemeti, has been widely seen as the most powerful figure in Sudan since his Rapid Support Forces led that bloody crackdown.

Under the new agreement, both sides will nominate five members to the council. The 11th member is to be jointly nominated, according to Mr. Farid.

It was agreed that the first leader would be Lt. Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the leader of the transitional military council, Mr. Farid said.

Mr. al-Bashir — who was wanted by the International Criminal Court, which accused him of playing “an essential role” in a genocidal purge in the Darfur region — was toppled after peaceful protesters massed for days at the gates of the sprawling military headquarters in Khartoum. They refused to leave even as rival factions of the security forces fought gun battles around them.

Some soldiers deserted their posts to defend the protesters from armed al-Bashir loyalists, who opened fire on them. Gun battles erupted at the protest site, and several people were killed.

It was agreed that the first leader under the power sharing agreement would be Lt. Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, front center.CreditAshraf Shazly/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

After Mr. al-Bashir’s ouster, many protesters were dismayed to see power pass into the hands of his top lieutenants, including officials accused of war crimes in Darfur. They promised to continue their sit-in until a civilian administration took office.

During negotiations led by the Sudanese Professionals Association, military leaders had presented themselves as supporters of democracy and had taken steps to meet demands for change. The generals moved Mr. al-Bashir into the notorious Kober prison in Khartoum, seized millions of dollars in foreign currency from his home and arrested several of his most senior aides.

But the military refused to hand over power immediately to the protesters.

Mr. al-Burhan moved into Mr. al-Bashir’s old presidential office, and his officers sought to exploit apparent divisions in the ranks of the inexperienced protest leaders, a coalition of professional groups, leftists and small political parties that were marginalized during Mr. al-Bashir’s rule.

Thousands of protesters remained camped out at the gates of the military headquarters in Khartoum, refusing to budge until the military acceded to their demand for a swift transition to civilian rule.

On June 3, soldiers with the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces swept through the protest site, raping women, shooting protesters and throwing bodies in the Nile. At least 128 people were killed over several days of violence, doctors said, and hundreds were wounded. The government admitted 61 deaths.

Ethiopia and the African Union, fearing the vast country could slide into chaos, deployed mediators to Khartoum in an effort to bring the sides together.

Link to web article.

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Sudan’s military and civilian opposition have reached a power-sharing deal

But the question still remains: Will the agreement fulfill the democratic promises of the Sudan uprising, especially if the military retains control?

By Jen Kirbyjen.kirby@vox.com  Jul 5, 2019, 3:50pm EDT

People celebrate in the streets of Khartoum, Sudan after the military and protest leaders announced a power-sharing arrangement. July 5, 2019.
 Ashraf Shazly/AFP/Getty Images

The Sudanese military and the country’s civilian opposition leaders have reached a preliminary power-sharing deal. It’s the first step toward a resolution after President Omar al-Bashir was ousted in a coup in April after months of protests — but a lot of uncertainty remains about the future of political power in Sudan.

The preliminary deal, which was reached Friday, would put Sudan under the control of a joint sovereign council, with power shifting between military and civilian leadership over about three years.

The authority will be led by a military leader for the first 21 months, and then a civilian leader would take over for 18 months. After that, the country would hold democratic elections. The sovereign council will consist of five military officials and five civilian leaders, along with one additional civilian, selected and agreed to by both groups.

Talks resumed this week after a month-long standoff between the military and civilian leaders following a June 3 massacre of protesters by Sudan’s security forces, known as the Rapid Support Forces, that left about 100 dead and hundreds more injured. Witnesses also said the forces raped women and robbed protesters during the violence.

An independent investigation on the June 3 crackdown is also included as part of the power-sharing agreement, though there’s little doubt Sudan’s paramilitary carried out the bloody campaign, leading to questions of whether such an inquiry will actually hold the military accountable.

And that’s just one of the many concerns regarding this preliminary deal between the Transitional Military Council — the armed forces controlling Sudan since al-Bashir was deposed — and the Alliance for Freedom and Change, the civilian leadership that’s supposed to be representing the protesters.

There’s a preliminary deal in Sudan. But what comes next?

On Friday, the African Union — which helped mediate negotiations over the past two days— said the Transitional Military Council and the Alliance for Freedom and Change had reached a “consensual and balanced peace agreement towards a democratic transition and civilian rule in Sudan.”

Some in Khartoum, Sudan’s capital, cheered the deal — but that jubilation might prove short-lived, as there’s still a lot of skepticism about the agreement that keeps elements of the Transitional Military Council in power.

Niemat Ahmadi, a survivor of the genocide in Darfur and president of Darfur Women Action Group, an advocacy organization in Washington, DC, told me that “giving the military a lead in the first interim period is the most dangerous” part, one that has her and other activists extremely worried.

“There’s no guarantee by the end of the three years that they will surrender the power completely to civilians,” Ahmadi said.

Ahmadi added that the decision to let the military remain in charge feels like a betrayal of the goals of the protest movement, which had advocated democracy and civilian rule.

Those who negotiated the agreement said they believed in the deal, despite some of those concerns. “It is a difficult path, but we’ve tried to convince our people that it’s a success, and we think that it will pave the way to an end of any military rule in Sudan,” Siddig Yousif, one of the main negotiators, told the BBC.

But that will probably do little to assure many in Sudan. Ahmadi told me that, in a “country torn apart by the military, there will not be trust between the people and the government.”

The person who perhaps best represents this is Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo — known as “Hemeti” — who is deputy head of the Transitional Military Council. Hemeti is accused of human rights atrocities in Darfur, and he’s the head of the Rapid Support Forces, the paramilitary group responsible for the violent crackdown against protesters on June 3.

As the Washington Post points out, the agreement doesn’t appear to keep him out of power. Hemeti himself said Friday that “this agreement will be comprehensive and will not exclude anyone.”

There are also concerns about representation in this new transitional government, specifically whether women and marginalized groups, particularly in those regions scarred by conflict, including Darfur — where the Sudanese government carried out a genocide in the 2000s — will be represented in government.

“We are the ones bearing the brunt of the violence, facing sexual harassment and rape, to organize and propel the movement on the street level,” Tahani Abbas, co-founder of the No to Women’s Oppression group who joined the protests, told Channel 4’s Yousra Elbagir. “Why then exclude us when it comes to decision-making?”

These disagreements and the dissatisfaction among civilian groups risk fracturing the protest movement that’s been largely led by middle-class professionals and students, particularly in the capital of Khartoum. That distrust is dangerous — and fomenting it was the “prime method” of the al-Bashir regime, Eric Reeves, a Sudan expert, told me.

“Divide and conquer, divide and conquer, that is how they work,” Reeves said. “This junta may have a new name, it may be called the Transitional Military Council, but it is in its methods, and its ruthlessness, and its capability of violence, it’s every bit as nasty as the al-Bashir regime.”

Another complicating factor to this deal: The internet is still mostly blacked out in Sudan, allowing the state-run media to control the narrative and making it hard to gauge reaction to the agreement. That’s a troubling sign if this is to be a transparent and accountable transitional government.

Freedom, peace, and justice were both the chants and the goals of the Sudan uprising. Doubts persist on whether those aims have been achieved by this deal. Many remain wary that the Sudanese government will commit to its promise to honor civilian leadership — and instead use this agreement to weaken the opposition and consolidate power. A deal in name only, in other words.

“This is not the best agreement possible,” Ahmadi said. “There can always be a better agreement because the people of Sudan have paid the highest price for change.”

“This is not change,” she added. “This is just the status quo.”

Link to web article.

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Measles in South Sudan calls for emergency response

Report from Medair Published on 03 Jul 2019

Written by Sue O’Connor, Communications Officer – 3 July 2019

The rattle of pebbles in a dusty soda bottle serves as background noise in the courtyard of Kuajok Hospital in South Sudan as Amel holds her son. She tries to distract one-year-old Agiu with the improvised toy, but he doesn’t seem interested; his body is fighting malnutrition and measles. Agiu is feverish and listless; painful sores around his mouth leave him uninterested in breastfeeding. Amel and at least a dozen other mothers sit outside an isolation tent set up by the staff in the local hospital. The tent is intended for children with measles.

Agiu’s condition is exactly what Medair aimed to prevent as the Emergency Response Team launched a mass measles vaccination campaign that reached nearly 250,000 children ages six months to 15 years. Agiu contracted the disease before Medair arrived in his community; thankfully his mother was able to walk the three hours from their home to access treatment at Kuajok Hospital.

Measles began spreading in early 2019; by May there would be 11 active outbreaks in a country characterised by one of the world’s lowest measles vaccination rates. High rates of malnutrition make South Sudan’s children more vulnerable to infection and complications can be life-threatening. Medair was asked to deliver emergency measles vaccination campaigns in two counties. Gogrial West and Gogrial East are home to nearly 600,000 people living in small villages scattered across hundreds of kilometres. Only a few areas are accessible by roadways; four-wheel-drive vehicles were used to deliver vaccines and supplies, and teams of staff walked hours to reach isolated settlements.

“It doesn’t have to be this way; measles is entirely preventable,” said Natalie Page, Health Advisor for Medair South Sudan. “The children of this country deserve better and should have the opportunity to be protected.”

James Ngor has led the routine immunisation programme for the Ministry of Health in this area for many years. Because of crisis in South Sudan, it has not been possible to implement routine immunisations on large scale. James has seen first-hand how measles spreads quickly.

“Measles always starts in the far areas where people don’t always know about this disease,” said James. “They are a long way from the hospital and many children become infected. For many years people have been on the move and have missed receiving vaccinations.

“Medair’s response is the best I have seen in 20 years,” said James. “You have gone to the very remote villages where people are always suffering. You have stayed to make sure there is full coverage, and you included the older group of children.”

Families like Akon’s were gravely affected by the low rate of measles vaccination coverage in South Sudan. In March, at the beginning of an outbreak in their home area, two of her young grandsons died from the complications of measles. “Every time I see their graves I feel like crying,” Akon said. “They are not here to play with me or to talk to me.” When Medair met Akon and her family, the team ensured that all of the other children received the measles vaccine.

The Expanded Programme of Immunisations (EPI), which includes vaccinations against measles, is offered at Medair-supported health clinics. Medair’s Emergency Response Team in South Sudan is funded by EU Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid, UK aid from the UK government, and private donors.

See the source image
An IOM nurse administers a measles to a child in Abeyi, 2016 IOM

This content was produced with resources gathered by Medair field and headquarters staff. The views expressed herein are those solely of Medair and should not be taken, in any way, to reflect the official opinion of any other organisation.

https://reliefweb.int/report/south-sudan/measles-south-sudan-calls-emergency-response

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Hemeti – the warlord who may control Sudan’s future!

Mohamed Hamdan “Hemeti” Dagolo is the vice-president of Sudan’s ruling military junta and, at present, probably the most powerful man in Sudan.

General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, head of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and deputy head of the Transitional Military Council (TMC) delivers an address after the Ramadan prayers and Iftar organized by Sultan of Darfur Ahmed Hussain in Khartoum, Sudan May 18, 2019. REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah/ Photo link.

He has the potential to shape the future of a broken country, but as the commander of one of Sudan’s most prominent paramilitary forces, he leaves a trail of human rights abuse allegations from Darfur in his wake and has recently been accused of allowing those same forces to kill demonstrators in Khartoum.

Hemeti has said that the use of force was necessary in Darfur in order to protect its civilians and an “independent investigation” will be launched into the military’s use of violence in Khartoum. Any person who had “crossed boundaries” would be punished, he said.

But he also defended the violence suppressing the protesters, explaining they had been infiltrated by rogue elements and drug dealers, and firm action was warranted.

“We will not allow chaos and we will not go back on our convictions,” he said. “There is no way back. We must impose the respect of the country by law.”

Hemeti and the Sudan uprising

Hemeti was a close political ally of Sudan’s former President Omar al-Bashir, but as protests against the former leader escalated in December, his loyalty soon wavered.

When demonstrations in Khartoum began, Hemeti was the first high-ranking official to express his support, telling the government to “provide services and decent living to the people”.

He said “the corrupt, whoever they are, should be referred to justice,” the state-owned Sudanese News Agency reported on 25 December.

Hemeti switched sides to force the president out of power on 11 April and was named vice-president of Sudan’s Transitional Military Council (TMC) two days later.

Why is he so powerful?

Although the TMC’s president is Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, Hemeti is the one at the forefront of negotiations with Western diplomats.

He is reportedly supported by the politicians who created the Janjaweed, the militia comprising of Arab groups who sowed fear into residents of the Darfur region of western Sudan during the conflict there.

BBC Africa editor Fergal Keane calls Hemeti “the most likely leader of a counter-revolution” and an “outsider” in the military elite.

Another factor behind Hemeti’s power is his support from regional allies: Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Stability in Sudan is in their interest and they are very unlikely to impose sanctions on the TMC. However, Saudi Arabia has said it is concerned with developments in the region and urged the two sides to engage in dialogue.

Version:1.0 StartHTML:000000209 EndHTML:000229776 StartFragment:000078192 EndFragment:000229702 StartSelection:000078299 EndSelection:000229651 SourceURL:https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-48512465 Hemeti – the warlord who may control Sudan’s future – BBC News

Camel trader to warlord

Hemeti grew up in a Chadian Arab clan, fleeing war to live in Darfur in the 1980s.

War in Darfur broke out in 2003, when marginalised black African clansmen in the region formed a rebel movement against the government. The army fought back, joined by paramilitary forces including the infamous Janjaweed, who were accused of riding their camels and horses into villages, killing the men, raping the women and stealing whatever they could find.

Rapid Support Forces holding guns while driving in the back of a pick-up truck
Image caption Rapid Support Forces are accused of widespread atrocities in Darfur

Since 2005, the International Criminal Court (ICC) has been investigating allegations of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity in Darfur. The case involves a range of Sudanese government officials, and both Janjaweed and rebel leaders.

Hemeti’s uncle is Juma Dongolo, a chief of one of the Arab groups which span the Chad-Sudan border.

Hemeti himself dropped out of primary school to trade camels and also offered security to commercial convoys in Darfur during the conflict. He was a savvy businessman and soon became rich, reports BBC Monitoring.

Map of Sudan

In 2003, as the Darfur rebellion began to gather momentum, Hemeti helped mobilise clansmen to fight alongside government forces. This earned him the support of President Bashir.

He became leader of the Border Guards, a group of Darfur militias supporting the government.

In 2013, the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) was formed to help regular forces fight rebels in Darfur. A year later, the group was recognised by the government as a “regular force”, but critics say it is merely a reincarnation of the Janjaweed.

Human rights abuses

Former President Bashir is wanted by the ICC for the alleged war crimes, genocide, and crimes against humanity committed in Darfur.

Although he has not been named by the ICC, Human Rights Watch accuses Hemeti of overseeing civilian abuses including “torture, extrajudicial killings and mass rapes” in Darfur as well as in separate conflicts in the southern Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan states.

Human Rights Watch said that during two counterinsurgency campaigns in Darfur in 2014 and 2015, the RSF “burned and looted homes, beat, raped and executed villagers,” supported by the Sudanese army and Janjaweed militia.

On 19 May 2014, Hemeti said that the RSF was protecting the people of Darfur. He warned that the RSF would “take a firm stance against anyone who tried to undermine the security and stability of citizens”.

Media captionSudan military attacks protesters

Chants about Darfur have played an active role in the latest protests in Khartoum, with demonstrators shouting: “We are all Darfur!” and “Darfur is our home! Revolution! Revolution!”

Despite witnessing Hemeti’s alleged brutality in both Darfur and Khartoum, the unarmed protesters say they will not give up their fight.

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Sudan police ‘fire tear gas’ at protesters in Khartoum !

KHARTOUM. 30 June, 2019

Sudan’s security forces have fired tear gas to disperse protesters demanding an end to military rule.

One protester was also reportedly killed as tens of thousands rallied across Sudan to push the junta to hand power to a civilian-led administration.

Women have played a leading role in the protests in the mainly Muslim state
Women have played a leading role in the protests in the mainly Muslim state

The protests are the biggest since dozens were killed in a crackdown on pro-democracy activists on 3 June.

Sudan has been in turmoil since the military ousted President Omar al-Bashir in April.

It followed a popular uprising against his rule. Mr Bashir seized power in a coup on 30 June 1989.

According to the Rapid Support Force (RSF) commander, snipers shot at least five civilians and three members of a parliamentary force during Sunday’s protest.

Gen Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo said: “There are snipers who are firing on people, they shot three members of the Rapid Support Force and five or six citizens. There are infiltrators, people who want to jeopardise progress.”

He did not confirm if there were any deaths.

Protesters defied the heavy presence of troops, including the feared RSF, to take part in what organisers had billed a “million-strong” march.

“We are here for the martyrs of the [June 3] sit-in. We want a civilian state that guarantees our freedom. We want to get rid of military dictatorship,” a 23-year-old protester named only as Zeinab told AFP news agency.

Protesters have hailed those killed by the security forces as martyrs

Security forces fired tear gas to disperse demonstrators near the presidential palace and three other districts in the capital, Khartoum, AFP reports.

Tear gas was also fired in Khartoum’s twin city of Omdurman and the eastern town of Gadaref.

In Atbara city in the north-east, a young protester died of a bullet wound to the chest, the pro-opposition Central Committee of Sudan Doctors said.


See also a video on the peaceful protests in the link below:

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-48812578?intlink_from_url=https://www.bbc.com/news/topics/cq23pdgvgm8t/sudan&link_location=live-reporting-story

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Sudan’s Mahdi rejects call for mass demos on June 30!

By AFP – Jun 27,2019 – Last updated at Jun 27,2019

KHARTOUM — Sudan’s veteran opposition leader Sadiq Al Mahdi rejected on Wednesday a call for nationwide mass demonstrations against the country’s ruling generals on June 30.

The remarks by the head of National Umma Party come as tension between the generals and leaders from the umbrella protest movement, the Alliance for Freedom and Change, remain high after a deadly crackdown.

The June 30 rallies called by the alliance coincide with the 30th anniversary of the Islamist-backed coup that had brought now ousted leader Omar Bashir to power after toppling the then elected government of Mahdi.

“Our opinion is to avoid escalatory measures from either side,” Mahdi, who is part of the protest movement, said at a press conference at his party headquarters in Omdurman, the twin city of Khartoum across the Nile.

Mahdi said any escalation prior to receiving the ruling military council’s response to a power transfer plan proposed by Ethiopia would be “premature”. 

Ethiopia is mediating talks between the generals and protest leaders since previous negotiations collapsed in the wake of the June 3 crackdown on a protest sit-in outside the army headquarters in the capital.

Ethiopia’s proposal calls for forming a new 15-member civilian-majority governing body, which the protest leaders have accepted but the military council has so far dismissed.

On June 3, armed men in military fatigues stormed the protest camp, shooting and beating demonstrators who had camped there since April 6.

More than 100 people were killed on that day, according to medics linked to the protest movement. Officials say 61 people died.

The generals deny they ordered the dispersal, insisting they had authorised only a limited operation to clear a nearby area of drug dealers.

Ethiopia and the African Union have since stepped up diplomatic efforts to resolve the crisis in Sudan.

Thousands of protesters had gathered for weeks outside the army complex since April 6, initially to demand the army’s support in toppling Bashir.

The army ousted the longtime ruler on April 11 on the back of protests, but since then the generals have resisted a transfer of power to a civilian administration as demanded by demonstrators.

Protest leaders and the military council are at loggerheads on the composition of the new governing body and on who should lead it — a civilian or a soldier.

http://www.jordantimes.com/news/region/sudans-mahdi-rejects-call-mass-demos-june-30

Sadiq Al Mahdi ( Credit: Google Images)


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