Africa

Thousands hold pro-army rally as political tension escalates in Sudan

Protesters in capital Khartoum urge military to seize control, depose Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok government

Mohammed Amin   | 22.10.2021
Thousands hold pro-army rally as political tension escalates in Sudan File Photo

KHARTOUM, Sudan 

Thousands of pro-military supporters organized a protest against Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok's transitional government in the Sudanese capital of Khartoum on Friday, further escalating political tension between the civilian administration and the army.

Protesters chanted anti-government slogans, urging the army to seize control and depose Hamdok's civilian government.

After a failed military coup last month, deep tensions between the military and civilian administration erupted in the north African country.

The demonstrations take place in the capital, where pro-military and pro-civilian factions are at odds.

The opposing rallies were staged by factions of the Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC), which led to large protests in 2019 that resulted in the ouster of longstanding President Omar al-Bashir.

On Thursday, thousands of pro-civilian government supporters held protests across the country, while pro-military protestors from the National Charter Alliance, an FFC’s splinter faction, held a sit-in outside the presidential palace for the last six days.

Protesters chanted anti-military slogans and demanded that the Sovereign Council's head, Abdul Fattah Alburah, and his deputy, Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, quit.

According to the Sudan Doctors Central Committee, at least 37 persons were injured during rallies when police fired tear gas and live bullets against demonstrators. Two police officers were also injured.

On Thursday night, Hamdok addressed the nation, praising pro-civilian protestors and pledging that his government will continue to support civilian rule and democratic development.

Separately, British and other Western envoys Thursday arrived in the capital to broker mediation for the current crisis.

The country is currently administered by a Sovereign Council of military and civilian authorities, which oversees the transition until elections are scheduled for 2023, as part of a precarious power-sharing pact between the military and the FFC.

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