Sudan's chief prosecutor says 24 killed in ongoing unrest

Clay Curtis
January 13, 2019

Protest organizers have called for near daily demonstrations across the country against the president, calling it a "Week of Uprising".

A government committee recorded 24 deaths, however Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said that at least 40 have died. Articles appear on euronews.com for a limited time.

Demonstrations that erupted in the provinces on December 19 after the government tripled the price of bread have escalated into nationwide anti-government rallies, with protesters calling for President Omar al-Bashir to resign. The rest were killed in Khartoum's twin city of Omdurman and regions north and northeast of the capital.

Numerous protesters were women who wore masks to protect themselves from tear gas as they whistled and clapped in the streets of Bahari, the hub of Sunday's demonstration, witnesses said.

On Sunday, protesters in Khartoum were seen carrying the Sudanese flag as others held banners bearing the words "peace, justice, freedom", which has become a key slogan in the rallies.

The association, which has mobilized its membership to keep up the momentum of the protests, has also called for a rally later on Friday in the eastern town of Atbara, where the demonstrations first began.

At least three people were killed in a protest in Omdurman on Wednesday, while eight people were hospitalised with gunshot wounds in the head, chest, stomach and legs, Amnesty said.

He has insisted that the protests are part of a foreign plot to undermine Sudan's "Islamic experiment" and blamed the country's worsening economic crisis on global sanctions.

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President Donald Trump announced via Twitter on December 19 that all U.S. troops in Syria would come home. Senior US officials were shocked too, among them Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, who quit in protest.

Shortages of fuel and food have hit several cities, including Khartoum.

Al-Bashir and other officials have blamed Washington for Sudan's economic woes, having imposed a trade embargo on Sudan in 1997 that was lifted only in October 2017.

Last week, Sudanese security sources confirmed the presence of Wagner Russian military in the country and that they work with the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) but refused to speak about their activities in Sudan.

Since the secession of South Sudan in 2011, Khartoum lost three quarters of its oil revenue, crippling an economy already wracked by 20 years of U.S. sanctions.

Rights groups say more than 1,000 people have been arrested since the protests began, including opposition leaders, activists and journalists as well as demonstrators.

Last month, the United States, Britain, Norway and Canada said in a joint statement that they have "reliable reports" that Sudan's security forces were using live fire.

Sudan has dismissed their concerns as "biased" and has insisted it is "committed to freedom of expression and peaceful demonstrations".

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