Sudanese security forces have attacked a protest camp in the country’s capital, Khartoum, opening fire, torching tents, and reportedly killing more than 30 people.
The assault on Monday was the worst violence in Sudan since the April 11 overthrow of long-time leader Omar al-Bashir and drew sharp condemnation from the United Nations, the African Union and others.
Protest leaders, who are seeking a speedy transition to civilian rule, called the raid “a massacre” aimed at breaking up the weeks-long sit-in outside the military headquarters in Khartoum.
But the ruling Transitional Military Council (TMC) denied trying to disperse the protest, saying security forces had targeted “unruly” groups nearby.
Here are all the latest updates:
Tuesday, June 4:
Opposition group warns Arab countries against interference
The Democratic Alliance of Lawyers has urged “some Arab countries” not to interfere in Sudanese affairs and to drop their support for the ruling military council.
“We ask that some Arab countries lift their hands from Sudan and to stop supporting the Military Council and consolidating the pillars of its rule with the aim of preserving it and protecting their own interests that are harmful to the Sudanese state and its citizens,” said the alliance, which is part of the Sudanese Professionals’ Association.
The group’s comments appeared to be aimed at Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Egypt, who analysts say are trying to consolidate their influence in Sudan following the overthrow of al-Bashir.
HRW slams ‘egregious rights abuses’ in Khartoum, calls for UN inquiry
Human Rights Watch has called on the United Nations to launch an “impartial, independent” investigation into the Sudanese military’s crackdown on protesters, saying the “egregious rights violations” during the raid required urgent international action.
Jehanne Henry, Associate Africa Director at Human Rights Watch, said “key international actors should impose targeted punitive sanctions against those responsible for the violence and urgently establish a UN inquiry”.
Opposition rejects military transition plan
Sudan’s opposition has rejected a plan by the country’s military rulers to hold elections within nine months, a day after a deadly crackdown on protesters, the worst violence since the removal of al-Bashir in April.
At least 35 people were killed on Monday when security forces stormed a protest camp outside the defence ministry in central Khartoum, according to doctors linked to the opposition.
The main protest organisers, the Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA), accused the security forces of perpetrating “a massacre” when they raided the camp amid heavy gunfire.
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Military cancels agreement with the opposition
Sudan’s military will cancel all previous agreements with the main opposition coalition, the head of the TMC has said in a televised statement, following deadly violence in Khartoum after security forces moved to disperse a sit-in protest outside the defence ministry.
Lieutenant General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan said that the coalition was equally responsible for the delay in coming to an agreement.
He said that elections would be held within nine months.
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Monday, June 3:
Prosecutor orders inquiry into violence at sit-in
Al-Waleed Saeed Ahmed, Sudan’s public prosecutor, has ordered an immediate investigation into Monday’s raid on the sit-in, according to the state-run Suna news agency.
Protest leaders call for marches and roadblocks
Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA) has called on supporters to take part in marches across the country and to block main roads to “paralyse public life”.
In a Twitter post, the SPA said “total civil disobedience” was the only way to force the country’s military rulers to cede power.
كما ندعو المواطنين ولجان الأحياء تكوين فرق لحماية الأحياء وتقديم الخدمات للمحتاجين من الأهالي.
تنفيذ العصيان المدني الشامل والإضراب السياسي هو الطريق إلى إسقاط طغمة المجلس العسكري الانقلابي المجرم وجهاز أمنه وكتائب ظله ومليشيات جنجويده، واستكمال ثورة شعبنا المجيدة.
— تجمع المهنيين السودانيين (@AssociationSd) June 3, 2019
Death toll from raid on Sudan protest camp ‘rises to more than 30’
An opposition-linked doctors’ committee said the number of people killed in the dispersal of the Khartoum protest camp “has risen to more than 30”.
The Sudan Doctors’ Committee said hundreds of people have also been wounded, many by gunfire.
Amnesty calls on UN to consider sanctions on Sudan’s military
Amnesty International has called on the UN Security Council to consider imposing sanctions on members of the TMC.
Sarah Jackson, the group’s deputy regional director for East Africa, said the UN body “must consider targeted sanctions on members of the TMC and others involved in the attack”.
The TMC “has completely destroyed the trust of the Sudanese people and crushed the people’s hope for a new era of respect for human rights and respect for the right to protest without fear,” she added.
UN condemns violence, use of excessive force in Khartoum
Antonio Guterres, UN secretary-general, has condemned violence and reports of excessive use of force by Sudanese security forces on civilians, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said in a statement.
Expressing alarm by reports that security forces opened fire inside medical facilities, Guterres urged all parties “to act with utmost restraint”.
He also called unimpeded access to deliver care at the sit-in site as well as hospitals where the wounded are treated, and for the Sudanese authorities to facilitate “an independent investigation into the deaths and to hold those responsible accountable,” Dujarric said.
‘Wrong, outrageous’: World reacts to Sudan crackdown
The deadly military crackdown on Sudanese protesters has prompted global concern with the United States describing the assault as “wrong”.
The African Union, Egypt, Germany and Qatar urged protest leaders and the TMC to return to negotiations, while the United Kingdom warned military rulers the international community “will hold it to account” over Monday’s violence.
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Death toll rises to 13, bodies seen floating in Nile River
The Central Committee of Sudan Doctors said the TMC has killed another four protesters, including an eight-year-old child. This brings the death toll to 13, with more than 116 others wounded.
However, separate medical sources have put the death toll at at least 24.
The committee also said that according to witnesses, bodies of protesters shot dead by the TMC were disposed of in the Nile River near the site of the protest sit-in, and could be seen floating in the water.
What’s happening in Sudan: Six things to know about the unrest
Weeks after the removal of Omar al-Bashir as the president of Sudan, the fight for civilian rule continues as the TMC refuses to give in to the protesters’ demand to hand over power.
The TMC, led by Lieutenant General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, says it will oversee a transitional period that will last a maximum of two years.
Sudan opposition says halting all contact with military
Sudan’s opposition and protest group alliance said on Monday it was halting all contact and negotiations with the country’s military council after security forces launched a deadly raid on a protest sit-in.
The Declaration of Freedom and Change Forces (DFCF) had been in talks with the TMC that took over from al-Bashir in April, but negotiations have stalled in recent weeks.
Death toll rises in raid on sit-in site
The number of people killed in a raid by security forces on a sit-in site in Khartoum has risen to nine, the Central Committee of Sudan Doctors said.
“The number of peaceful protesters killed is increasing rapidly, which makes it hard to count and identify them timely,” the committee said in a statement.
TMC says security forces did not target sit-in site
TMC spokesman Shams al-Din Kabashi told Al Jazeera security forces did not target the sit-in site.
“What is going on is targeting Colombia [a nickname given to the area because of alleged criminal activity there] adjacent to the sit-in area and not targeting the sit-in. Dangerous groups infiltrated among the protesters in the sit-in area,” Kabashi said.
“We believe that a return to negotiations is the quickest way to resolve the problem,” he added.
Security forces ‘firing live ammunition’ inside hospital
The Central Committee of Sudan Doctors said security forces were firing live ammunition inside East Nile Hospital in Khartoum.
Security forces chased peaceful protesters inside the hospital’s compound, the committee added.
Protest leader: Storming of sit-in site a ‘coup’ against uprising
A leader of Sudan’s protest movement on Monday called the storming by security forces of a protest camp in central Khartoum a “coup” against the uprising that led to the overthrow of al-Bashir.
“We will confront it by escalating protests, marches and full civil disobedience,” said Khalid Omar Yousef, a leader of the Declaration of Freedom and Change Forces.
A spokesman for the TMC told Reuters news agency that he expects talks on the civilian transition to resume “today or tomorrow”.
Protesters shot as military tries to clear Khartoum sit-in
Heavy gunfire was heard in Khartoum as security forces moved in to clear a protest camp that has been the central point in the demonstrators’ months-long struggle for civilian rule.
The Central Committee of Sudanese Doctors, a medical group linked to protesters, said at least five people were killed and several wounded in the Monday morning raid, which was still in progress.