UN envoy condems Sudan protest deaths | DW | 29.05.2022

The United Nations envoy for Sudan on Sunday criticized the killing of two civilians by security forces during the latest protests against last October’s military coup.

“I am appalled by the violent death of two young protesters in Khartoum yesterday, Once again: it is time for the violence to stop,” said Volker Perthes, the UN envoy, on Twitter.

Perthes also said it was “time to end the state of emergency” imposed after the military putsch and called for “a peaceful way out of the current crisis in Sudan.”

Military accused of ‘deliberately’ using ‘deadly violence’

Activists said that security forces used gunfire and teargas to disperse the hundreds of protesters that had gathered in one part of the capital Khartoum on Saturday. Several other rallies were held across the city.

Two people were killed, one shot dead by security forces and the other suffocated after inhaling tear gas, according to the Central Committee of Sudan Doctors (CCSD), which is part of the pro-democracy movement.

The Committee wrote on Twitter that “the coup forces deliberately use deadly violence … using all kinds of weapons against the peaceful revolutionaries who prove day after day that peace is stronger than bullets.”

Sudan’s military has kept up its brutal crackdown on demonstrations since the takeover on October 25, led by army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan.

Almost 100 protesters killed

At least 98 people have been killed and over 4,300 wounded, according to the medical group.

Already one of the world’s poorest countries, Sudan has also faced international aid cuts and economic turmoil since the coup.

The military upended a transition to civilian rule after the 2019 ouster of autocratic President Omar al-Bashir, who ruled the country for three decades.

Protesters have rallied regularly ever since, demanding a return to civilian rule.

The military insists it will only step down once an elected government is in place and has proposed elections for July 2023.

The UN, the African Union and an eight-nation East African regional group have been pushing to facilitate Sudanese-led talks to resolve the crisis.

But civilian groups have refused to enter negotiations involving the military.

Security council recommends lifting of emergency rule

In an effort to calm tensions, Sudan’s security council Sunday recommended lifting an emergency law imposed after the coup and releasing all detainees who were arrested under it, according to a statement issued by the transitional sovereign council seen by Reuters news agency.

Al-Burhan headed a meeting of the Council that focused on ways to create the right atmosphere for dialogue.

Activists go on trial accused of killing police officer

Also on Sunday, a trial began of four activists accused of killing a senior police officer during a protest earlier this year.

The four were arrested after police Colonel Ali Hamad was stabbed to death as security forces dispersed protesters on January 13.

The court ordered the defendants to be medically examined after their lawyers claimed they were tortured and mistreated in police detention.

mm/msh (AP, Reuters)

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