Sudanese forces kill at least one protester, doctor group says

Sudanese security forces killed at least one person in a violent crackdown on Tuesday’s anti-coup demonstrators in the capital, Khartoum, and other cities, a medical team said.

The Sudanese Doctors’ Committee, which is part of the pro-democracy movement, said a protester was shot dead when security forces opened fire on demonstrators in Omdurman, Khartoum’s twin city.

It says the death toll among protesters has risen to at least 118, mostly young people, as the military seized power on October 25 in a globally condemned coup that plunged the country into deepening unrest.

Thousands of people have been injured in the nearly weekly street protests since the coup, according to a medical team that tracks protest casualties.

The coup derailed the country’s short-lived transition to democracy after a popular uprising in April 2019 saw the military sack longtime autocrat Omar al-Bashir and his Islamist-allied government.

A leading pro-democracy movement known as the Forces for a Declaration of Freedom and Change called for protests on Tuesday to denounce the coup and days of tribal clashes in southern Blue Nile province that killed at least 105 people earlier this month.

The group said plainclothes men armed with pistols and knives attacked a protest march in Khartoum. It claimed that the security forces and supporters of al-Bashir were behind the attack. He provided no evidence to support his claims and there was no immediate comment from the police.

Tuesday’s protests came just three weeks after the country’s top military officer, General Abdel-Fattah Burhan, said he and other commanders would not take part in UN-sponsored talks with the pro-democracy movement and that the military would return to the barracks after the political forces agreed about the transitional government.

Burhan’s July 4 statement was echoed last week by General Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo, commander of the feared Rapid Support Force. Raised from the notorious Janjaweed militia, the RSF has been accused by human rights activists and protest groups of being involved in anti-protest atrocities over the past three years.

The pro-democracy movement dismissed Burhan’s announcement as a tactical maneuver that was likely to stir up divisions within the already fractured pro-democracy groups. He urged the general to step down and allow pro-democracy groups to form a civilian government and restructure the army.