Published: Mon, January 14, 2019
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Police fire tear gas at Khartoum protesters; rally in Darfur region

Police fire tear gas at Khartoum protesters; rally in Darfur region

Friday's protests appeared to have drawn more people than before and were more widespread.

Amnesty International has estimated that at least 40 people have died in the protests.

The protests that first broke over the price rise have quickly turned into anti-government demonstrations, with angry crowds calling for an end to Bashir's three decades in power.

Hundreds of protesters marched in and around Sudan's capital Khartoum on Sunday, the fourth week of unrest that began over skyrocketing prices and a failing economy but which now calls for the ouster of autocratic President Omar al-Bashir.

In a separate incident, witnesses said hundreds of demonstrators emerged from a mosque known to be affiliated to Bashir's government in the Jabra district of southern Khartoum chanting: "The people want the fall of the regime".

A group of doctors from the hospital said separately that police had fired tear gas at the facility and there was also "shooting inside the hospital".

The group called for a major rally in Khartoum North on Sunday, to be followed by further demonstrations in the capital during the week.

Demonstrations were held in Gadarif, Faw and Amri, as well in the western region of Darfur, activists said, with eyewitnesses adding that police had broken up a 1,000-person strong demonstration in the northern Darfur town of el-Fasher.

At least 24 people have been killed in Sudan since protests began on December 19 over the country's deteriorating economy, the country's public officer said on Saturday.

Analysts say the challenge now for organizers is to get protesters onto the street in numbers. 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.

Repeated shortages of food and fuel have been reported in several cities, including Khartoum, while the costs of foods and medicines have more than doubled.

In a strongly-worded statement, Sudan's National Commission for Human Rights slammed the attack on the Omdurman hospital and called for a swift investigation into the deaths of citizens.

Washington imposed a trade embargo on Khartoum in 1997 that was lifted only in October 2017. He has also failed to unite or keep the peace in the religiously and ethnically diverse nation, losing three quarters of Sudan's oil wealth when the mainly animist and Christian south seceded in 2011 following a referendum.

The president has remained defiant telling thousands of loyalists at a Khartoum rally on Wednesday that his government would not give in to economic pressure.

Darfur has remained largely calm since previous year, with no anti-government demonstration held so far even as protesters staged hundreds of rallies in other cities that have been swiftly broken up by riot police.

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

Like this: