Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism.
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Cancel Anytime
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Canada’s most-awarded
newsroom for a reason
Stay informed for a
lot less, cancel anytime
“Exemplary reporting on
COVID-19” – Herman L
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); } //

A Sudanese protester flashes the victory sign in front of burning tires and debris on road 60 in Khartoum, Sudan, on June 3, 2019.

The Associated Press

Sudan’s opposition on Tuesday rejected a plan by its military rulers to hold elections within nine months, a day after the worst bout of violence since President Omar al-Bashir was overthrown in April.

At least 35 people were killed on Monday when security forces stormed a protest camp outside the Defence Ministry in central Khartoum, doctors linked to the opposition said.

The Transitional Military Council (TMC) that has ruled since Mr. Bashir’s ousting cancelled all agreements reached during talks with the main opposition alliance on setting up a transitional administration. The sides had agreed on forming a parliament and a government that would prepare for elections after three years.

Story continues below advertisement

Madani Abbas Madani, a leader of the Declaration of Freedom and Change Forces (DFCF) opposition alliance, said an open-ended civil disobedience campaign would continue to try to force the council from power.

Omar al-Digair, a prominent DFCF leader, said the two sides were close to reaching a final agreement that had been proposed by the TMC. It would have seen a 50-50 split on a sovereign council and a rotational presidency, he said.

“DFCF agreed with a large majority to this agreement presented by the TMC and we were meant to hold an expanded meeting last night to reach a final agreement,” Mr. Degair said.

“We have information that there are bodies in Al-Moalem Hospital, near the sit-in, because the council is barring journalists from entering the sit-in site or Al-Moalem Hospital,” he said. He also called on the international community not to recognize the TMC’s legitimacy.

“What happened [on Monday] – the killing and injuring of protesters, the humiliation – was a systematic and planned attempt to impose repression on the Sudanese people,” Mr. Madani said.

The main protest organizers, the Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA), called for an international committee to investigate the deaths in what it called a “massacre”.

Khartoum was tense on Tuesday, with many roads barricaded by protesters, shops shut and streets mostly empty. Security forces were trying to clear the barricades, a witness said.

Story continues below advertisement

Rapid Support Forces (RSF) vehicles were patrolling the streets in Omdurman, on the other side of the River Nile from Khartoum, and firing into the air.

A witness said they saw around a dozen men in uniform intimidating people into taking down barricades in Khartoum North, including by whipping them.

Social-media users said soldiers from the RSF, a paramilitary force led by General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, the military council’s deputy head, were firing into the air to “terrorise” people and beating demonstrators with batons. There were reports of at least one person killed and several injured.

One posting showed a young man describe how he was beaten up at Khartoum University, sustaining a broken arm. He displayed a partially shaven head and marks of lashing on his back. It was not immediately possible to independently verify the report.

Sudan has been rocked by unrest since December, when anger over rising bread prices and cash shortages broke into sustained protests that culminated in the armed forces removing Mr. Bashir after three decades in office.

Talks between the TMC and DFCF ground to a halt amid deep differences over who would lead a transition to democracy that both sides had agreed would last for three years.

Story continues below advertisement

Protest leaders have demanded proper preparations for elections during a transitional period led by a civilian administration.

“We believe that the matter is now in the hands of the Sudanese people,” said Khalid Omar Yousef, a DFCF leader. “This regime will fall, no matter what.”

The SPA also rejected the establishment of a governmental committee to investigate Monday’s deaths, spokesman Amjad Farid said, adding that the TMC was accused of targeting protesters.

Council spokesman Lt.-Gen. Shams El Din Kabbashi denied this charge, and said security forces had pursued “unruly elements” who fled to the protest site and caused chaos.

In a televised address early on Tuesday, TMC Head Lt.-Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan said the opposition coalition was equally responsible for the delay in reaching a final agreement.

The council has decided to cancel all agreements with the protest groups and called for elections within nine months under regional and international supervision, he said.

Story continues below advertisement

“Gaining legitimacy and a mandate does not come but through the ballot box,” Lt.-Gen. Burhan said, adding that a government would be formed immediately to run the country until elections are held.

Lt.-Gen. Burhan said he regretted the violence and said it would be investigated.

The security forces’ operation drew condemnation from Europe, the United States and the African Union.

The Democratic Alliance of Lawyers, part of the SPA, on Tuesday urged “some Arab countries” not to interfere in Sudanese affairs and to drop their support for the TMC.

The alliance’s comments appeared aimed at Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt, which analysts say are trying to shore up their influence in Sudan following Mr. Bashir’s overthrow.

The Soufan Group, a security and intelligence think-tank, said the violence could swiftly escalate into civil war.

Story continues below advertisement

“There are clear parallels to some of the Arab Spring protests that eventually progressed to full-blown insurgencies, including Syria, where indiscriminate shelling of civilians by the military initially galvanized protest movements that helped launch a broader uprising,” it said in an analysis.

However, Hamid Eltigani Ali, a professor at the American University in Cairo, predicted that the protest movement would succeed in forcing the military to step down. There were two competing visions for Sudan’s future, he said.

“The vision of hate and division is led by the Janjaweed [militias] and military resisting to preserve their economic interests they enjoyed during Bashir’s rule, while the vision of hope is led by professional associations and syndicates. They want a democratic, open Sudan with a strong developmental vision,” Mr. Ali said.

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies