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Sudan: protests continue in a country cut off from the world

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As with every demonstration, which has become regular since General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan’s coup d’état on October 25, the authorities have once again tried, in vain, to nip the mobilization in the bud by erecting physical and virtual roadblocks.

Khartoum has been cut off from its suburbs for several days by containers placed across bridges over the Nile. The Internet and cell phones have stopped working since morning and, on the main roads, members of the security forces perched on armored tanks armed with heavy machine guns keep watch on passers-by.

But thousands of Sudanese still responded at midday to the call of activists to demonstrate. in memory of the martyrs.

Because if 54 people have been killed and hundreds injured since the putsch, the country experienced a new peak of violence on Thursday, with six demonstrators killed in Khartoum according to a union of pro-democracy doctors.

The protracted dictatorship

Violence which took place behind closed doors that day, because in addition to cutting the country off from the world and Khartoum from its suburbs, officers in regular uniform arrested and even beaten journalists from two Saudi channels.

Tens of thousands of Sudanese protested in Khartoum.

Protester injured after police fired tear gas into crowd (on file).

Photo: afp via getty images / –

Sunday again, they were however thousands to parade to the cries of The soldiers at the barracks and Power to the people, while young people on motorcycles crisscrossed the crowd, ready to pick up the wounded, because at each mobilization the ambulances were blocked by the security forces.

Activists call for making 2022 the year of continued resistance, demanding justice for the dozens of demonstrators killed since the putsch, but also for the more than 250 civilians killed during the revolution from 2019.

That year, popular pressure forced the army to dismiss one of its own, Omar al-Bashir, after thirty years of military-Islamist dictatorship.

So generals and civilians agreed on a transitional timetable that called for handing over all power to civilians before free elections in 2023.

But on October 25, General Burhan reshuffled the cards: he extended with what he calls his correction of the course of the revolution his de facto tenure as head of the country for two years and reinstalled civilian Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok a month later.

The latter has not appeared in public for days, while rumors of resignation keep swelling.

Because the new power is still struggling to present to the 45 million Sudanese the civilian government that it promised at the end of November by releasing Mr. Hamdok from house arrest.

The general speaks to reporters.

General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan.

Photo: afp via getty images / ASHRAF SHAZLY

Protestors raped

In a country almost always under the rule of the army since its independence 65 years ago, the demonstrators proclaim it: neither partnership nor negotiation with the army.

Opposite, an adviser to General Burhan ruled on Friday that demonstrations are just a waste of energy and time who will not lead to no political solution.

Once again on Sunday, the Sudanese authorities will be observed by the international community which denounces an escalation.

In addition to the deaths and the shutdown of the telephone and Internet, the security forces are also accused of having resorted in December to a new tool of repression: the rape of at least 13 demonstrators, according to theUnited Nations Organization.

In addition, every day and in each neighborhood, the Resistance Committees, the small groups that organize demonstrations, announce new arrests or disappearances from their ranks.

Europeans have already expressed their outrage, as have US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and theUnited Nations Organization. All regularly plead for a return to dialogue as a prerequisite for the resumption of international aid cut after the putsch in this country, one of the poorest in the world.

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