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MARCH 2021

Sudan Coup Succeeded. What’s Happening Now?


Sudan Coup Succeeded. What's Happening Now?

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On April 11th, the Sudanese military announced that (now former) Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir was ousted and detained.

Defense Minister, General, Awad Mohammad Ahmed Ibn Auf announced that a two-year Military Council would be formed the lead the country.

Sudan Coup Succeeded. What's Happening Now?

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The transitional constitution of 2005, after South Sudan separated itself would be suspended.

He announced a state of emergency over the next three months and a curfew for the next month which prohibits citizens from being outside between 10 PM and 4 AM.

He also announced the closure of the airspace and crossings for 24 hours, in addition to resolving the institution of the presidency and the Council of Ministers and the Parliament and the Council of State and State governments and their legislative councils and assigning the governors to carry out tasks and assigning the undersecretaries of ministries to run the work.

The military’s statement assured that all courts and embassies would continue working, affirming the Military Council ‘s commitment to preserve public life without exclusion.

“The Army affirmed its keenness to pave the way for peaceful handling of power, building of political parties, holding of a free and transparent elections in the end of the transitional period and issuance of the permanent constitution.”

General Ibn Auf said that the higher security committee and the Armed Forces and its other components have assumed full responsibility for changing the entire system for a transitional period of two years, in which the Armed Forces will be the main and a limited representation of the components of that committee.

General Ibn Auf, like former President al-Bashir, had been accused of perpetrating war crimes in Sudan’s western region of Darfur. He is also a confidant of al-Bashir. On February 24th, Ibn Auf was sworn in as first vice president.

“It’s basically Bashir’s henchmen taking over,” said Alex de Waal, a Sudan expert at Tufts University. “It stops a civil war among Sudan’s rivalrous military oligarchs, but it won’t satisfy the demands for democracy.”

Sudan Coup Succeeded. What's Happening Now?

Click to see full-size image

The protests continued despite the “victory.” And despite the imposed curfew.

“We do not replace a thief with a thief,” protesters chanted. “We don’t want the same guy!” shouted others. Within hours, another taunt at the regime was circulating online: “It fell once, it can fall again!”

“What has been just stated is for us a coup, and it is not acceptable,” said Sara Abdelgalil, a spokeswoman for the Sudanese Professionals Association, which has been organizing the protests. “They are recycling the faces, and this will return us to where we have been.”

“We insist on a civil government,” said Abdelgalil, the protest organizer, adding that the demonstrations would continue “until there is a complete stepdown of the whole regime.”

In Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, said “the military takeover is not the appropriate response to the challenges facing Sudan.” He urged all parties to remain calm and exercise restraint.

The United Nations Security Council is due to hold closed-door talks about the Sudan situation on Friday. Britain’s deputy ambassador to the U.N., Jonathan Allen, condemned the military’s transition plan as inadequate.

“We need to see much faster transition. We need to see civilian rule now. That’s what the protesters have been calling for and that is what we need to do,” Allen said.

Separately, Alaa Salah achieved internet fame after clips went viral of her leading powerful protest chants against President Omar al-Bashir.

Naturally, she wasn’t pleased with the outcome of the Bashir ousting as well.

A photograph of Alaa Salah, taken by Lana Hago became viral as a sign of the protests and turned the “woman in the white tobe” into a sort of leader of the protests.

Hind Makki, a Sudanese American interfaith and racism educator in Chicago, provided some insight into it.

Alaa Salah’s entire outfit appears to be “designed” to appease the Sudanese protesters and turn her into a sort of key-piece at the demonstrations.

According to Makki, Salah simply wanted to make a “symbolic statement.” And she did, protesters and users online are calling her a “Kandaka,” a Nubian queen.

Taking into account a detailed work with the public image, it’s quite possible and likely that there is a team of experts behind this grassroots, “impromptu” leader.




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