Calls mount for Sudan coup leaders to free PM

3 Sudan
(Photo: Jordan News)
KHARTOUM — Calls mounted Tuesday for the release of Sudan’s Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, the day after a coup led by the country’s top general who insisted the premier was in “good health.”اضافة اعلان

 UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres demanded Hamdok “be released immediately”, as the Security Council held an emergency meeting on Sudan, adding to a chorus of condemnation of a power grab that has seen the US suspend aid and the EU threaten to do so.  

The coup comes just over two years into a delicate power-sharing arrangement between the military and civilians after the army’s ouster amid enormous street protests in April 2019 of longtime autocrat Omar Al-Bashir.
Angry citizens stood their ground on barricaded streets where tires burned, chanting “No to military rule,” the day after four people were reportedly shot dead by security forces.  

The coup has raised fears for Hamdok’s fate, but top General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan said Tuesday the premier was “at my home ... in good health” and would be able to return to his own home “when the crisis is over.”

Shortly after, the Information Ministry relayed a statement from the prime minister’s office demanding his immediate release.

It appealed for the “liberation of everyone” arrested on Monday, including Hamdok’s wife, several ministers, and civilian members of the country’s power-sharing council.

Money on the line 

Burhan’s declaration of a state of emergency and dissolution of the government provoked an immediate international backlash. 

The US, a key backer of the transition, strongly condemned the military’s actions and suspended hundreds of millions of dollars in aid, before the EU late Tuesday threatened “serious consequences” for Sudan’s rulers, including to financial support. 

Sudan risks “going back into a period of being shunned by the rest of the world” and losing badly needed financial aid, said Alex de Waal, a veteran expert on Sudan who is executive director of the World Peace Foundation.
Hamdok’s government earlier this year unlocked international financial assistance, after it was frozen for years under Bashir.

Sudan’s ambassadors to Belgium, France, and Switzerland on Tuesday declared their diplomatic missions as “embassies of the Sudanese people and their revolution,” according to the Information Ministry.

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