Sudan’s armed forces chief defended the military’s seizure of power saying he had dissolved the government to avoid civil war.
On Tuesday, in his first press conference since the takeover, General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan said the army had no choice but to sideline politicians who were inciting against the armed forces. Moreover, al-Burhan said Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok was safe at his own house as “we feared for his own life”.
Defiant anti-coup protesters continue to barricade roads in Sudan’s capital, Khartoum, returning to the streets for a second consecutive day despite the security forces’ use of violence the day before.
Al-Burhan announced on Monday a state of emergency across the country while dissolving the country’s transitional authorities. Hours earlier, tens of thousands of pro-democracy protesters began pouring onto the streets as news spread that soldiers had arrested several government officials, including Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok.
Sources at the Health Ministry told Al Jazeera that seven people were killed on Monday. The military also cut off access to the internet and closed some roads, bridges and the airport in Khartoum.
The coup drew widespread international condemnation and demands for the release of everyone detained. The United Nations Security Council is expected to discuss the situation behind closed doors later on Tuesday.
Here are all the latest updates:
Fate of detained officials a ‘concern’: analyst
Sudanese army chief al-Burhan is out to “take revenge” for those officials who stood up to him in the weeks leading to the military takeover, Sudanese analyst Suliman Baldo told Al Jazeera.
“When these people were detained, they were given ill treatment, and there are reports of them being subjected to even worse in detention. Therefore, their fate is should be a concern, and the security and army should be held accountable for what happens to these officials,” he said via Skype from New York.
Aviation authority suspends flights until October 30
Sudan’s civil aviation authority suspended on Tuesday all flights to and from Khartoum international airport until Oct.30, the airport said on its Facebook page.
US coordinating with regional leaders on Sudan: Biden aide
US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan has said that the Biden administration is coordinating its response to the military takeover in Sudan with other countries in the region.
“We’ve been in close contact with regional leaders, including in the Gulf, to make sure that we’re closely coordinating and sending a clear message to the military in Sudan that they should first and foremost cease any violence against innocent civilians, so that they should release those who have been detained and they should get back on a democratic path,” Sullivan said.
Sullivan reiterated Washington’s rejection of the takeover, saying that the US administration is looking to use “economic tools” to counter what he called an “alarming setback” to the political process in Sudan.
“We’ve already made clear that we are pressing pause on significant aspects of our economic assistance to Sudan,” he said. “And we will look at the full range of economic tools available to us – in coordination and consultation with regional actors and other key countries – to make sure that we are trying to push … the entire Sudanese political process back in a positive direction.”
UN chief says Sudan PM detained in coup must be released ‘immediately’
Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called for the immediate release of Sudan’s prime minister.
Speaking at a press conference, Guterres said “geopolitical divides” were preventing the Security Council from taking strong measures as countries around the world grapple with the pandemic and social and economic problems.
‘Extraordinary gamble’ by military to intervene: analyst
It’s an extraordinary gamble by General al-Burhan to go against what the “unanimous clear opinion” from the international community that the constitutional declaration of 2019 of power sharing and the transition to democracy should be followed, Alex De Waal of the World Peace foundation told Al Jazeera.
“It would appear he’s [al-Burhan] is just digging himself deeper into a hole,” Waal said, speaking from Edinburgh, UK.
“He’s [al-Burhan] already facing a suspension of US assistance. One suspects that the debt relief that has been painstakingly negotiated by the civilian government will now be put on hold. One suspects the armed groups that have not signed peace agreements, which are the most powerful ones in Darfur … will not sign any agreement.”
‘Major setback’ in US, Sudan relationship: AJ correspondent
The Biden administration is now completely reevaluating its relationship with Sudan, Al Jazeera’s Mike Hanna reported from Washington, DC, adding that the relationship had been warming up in recent months.
“Only last year, the US removed Sudan from its list of terror entities. There was an improvement in the relationship between the two countries. But this now a major setback in terms of the relationship between the US and Sudan,” Hanna added.
Foreign minister condemns ‘military coup’ in Sudan
Sudan’s Foreign Minister Mariam al-Sadiq sent messages to her counterparts around the world condemning the “military coup” in her country and the detention of Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and ministers in the transitional civilian government.
In her message, al-Sadiq vowed “to resist the military coup in Sudan with all peaceful means”, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
Al-Burhan says Hamdok is safe at his house, intervened to avoid civil war
In a televised news conference, al-Burhan said Hamdok is safe at his own house as “we feared for his own life”.
During the speech, the army general said that by the end of the week justice bodies and the legislative council will be formed. The latter will be composed of young people not affiliated with any party. He also said that internet and mobile networks will be restored in the coming hours.
He stressed that the military will “go back to the barracks” once the transition to a civilian government is completed.
He said that the infighting between political factions and the incitement against the military forces could have led the country into a civil war.
Three ambassadors defect: ministry
Three ambassadors in Europe announced they supported the pro-civilian demonstrators, condemning the military coup in their country and declaring their embassies as belonging to the “Sudanese people”, the information ministry said.
“We completely align ourselves with the heroic opposition (to the coup) followed by the entire world,” the envoys to France, Belgium and Switzerland said, declaring their missions as “embassies of the Sudanese people and their revolution”.
In pictures: protesters back to the streets
Hamdok and missing cabinet members’ whereabouts still unknown
In a post on its official Facebook account, the Ministry of Information reported a message from the deposed Ministry of Foreign Affairs saying that Hamdok and his missing cabinet members are still being held in an “unknown location”.
The information ministry is one of the few government bodies still commenting on the situation on the ground.
Russia calls for restraint
Russia is concerned with the situation in Sudan and urges all parties to exercise restraint, said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov.
“The people of Sudan must resolve the situation in the country on their own and we wish for this to happen as quickly as possible and without any loss of human lives,” Peskov told a briefing.
Sudan to be run by a technocratic government
In a television statement, al-Burhan pledged that Sudan will be led by a technocratic government.
“The affairs of the country will be run by an independent technocrat government where people of Sudan from all walks of life will be represented,” the general said.
Commenting on the army chief’s remarks, including a pledge to hold elections in July 2023, Al Jazeera’s Hiba Morgan in Khartoum said the general appeared to want to reassure the public that the military will not retain power for long.
“It looks like he wants to show this is a temporary government and not something without deadline,” Morgan said.
Which constitutional articles have been suspended?
Al-Burhan said the military will continue the process towards democracy and elections in 2023, but he also announced the suspension of several articles related to the constitutional document governing the transitional period.
Here is a look at those articles and the potential significance of such a move.
Setting barricades in Khartoum’s centre
Images on social media posted by the Sudanese Professionals Association show Juba street in Khartoum, with car tyres burning and people up setting barricades.
جماهير الشعب السوداني ترفض وتقاوم الانقلاب العسكري
Translation: The Sudanese people reject and resist the military coup. Closing the main streets with barricades and calling for nationwide civilian disobedience. October 26, 2021
Army dissolves trade unions’ management committees
Al-Burhan decided to dissolve the committees managing the country’s trade unions.
“We have to remember … when the transitional government took over, they dissolved the unions in existence and placed interim unions to basically dismantle and take away elements of the former regime as they said they were highly politicised,” Al Jazeera’s Morgan said. “Now those interim unions have been dissolved as well,” she added.
Army general to hold news conference: officials
Al-Burhan will hold a news conference later on Tuesday at the general command of the military where he will address senior military officials on the latest development.
“General Burhan will speak at a press conference at the army headquarters in Khartoum” from 1pm (11:00 GMT), officials from his office said.
The general is expected to lay out what the new transitional government that is supposed to take charge of the country until elections in July 2023 is going to look like.
What is next for Sudan after the coup?
Miners answer call for civilian disobedience
Workers at the mining DAL company joined the opposition’s nationwide call for civilian disobedience against the military power grab, the Sudanese Congress Party said on social media.
Translation: Photos show Dal Mining Company employees responding to a nationwide call for civil disobedience to reject the military coup in Sudan
Calls for civilian disobedience as barricades set
Al Jazeera’s Hiba Morgan, reporting from Khartoum, said there have been calls for civilian disobedience and a general strike to protest against the military takeover.
“We have seen protesters setting barricades on various streets around Khartoum to prevent the military from entering neighbourhoods,” she said.
“For these protesters, the barricades, which were set up even before al-Burhan’s announcement on Monday, are a sign of resistance that they want a civilian-led transitional government to lead them to elections,” Morgan added. “But now that they have a military leadership, and they don’t want that.”
Protesters return to the streets
Pro-democracy protesters returned to the streets to demonstrate against the military coup.
“Returning to the past is not an option,” chanted the crowds.
All telecommunications were interrupted in Sudan, the Saudi-owned Dubai-based al-Hadath television channel said. There was no official confirmation of the communications blackout.
US ‘firmly rejects’ army actions, suspends $700m in aid
The United States government “strongly condemns the actions” of the Sudanese armed forces and it “firmly reject the dissolution of the transitional cabinet”, it said in a statement.
It also denounced the “unacceptable” arrest of Hamdok and other senior officials, calling for their immediate release.
“These actions have the potential to derail the country’s transition to democracy and are a betrayal of Sudan’s peaceful revolution,” read the statement.
“In light of these developments, the United States is immediately pausing the delivery of $700 million in emergency Economic Support Funds to Sudan, which were intended to support the country’s democratic transition, while we evaluate next steps.”
The arrest of Sudanese Prime Minister Hamdok and other civilian leaders is unacceptable. We call on the security forces to ensure their safety and to release them immediately. https://t.co/qO6qpOzHUX
— Ned Price (@StateDeptSpox) October 26, 2021
Here you can find Monday’s updates.
This content was originally published here.