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03 Apr 2019 | 08:11 PM UTC

Sudan: Anti-government protests planned in Khartoum state April 6 /update 46

Civil society group to stage rallies in Khartoum state April 6; clashes between protesters and police likely

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SDN

Event

The Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA) have announced anti-government demonstrations in Khartoum state on Saturday, April 6, to mark the 34th anniversary of the overthrow of the Gaafar Nimeiry regime. Demonstrators will reportedly march in Khartoum on al Qiyada street to the General Directorate of the Armed Forces. Additional protests are possible in Khartoum North and Omdurman on Saturday, to demand the resignation of President Omar al-Bashir. 

Further related protests are likely to take place nationwide in the coming days. Heightened security measures and associated transportation disruptions are to be expected nationwide, notably in the capital Khartoum and its twin city Omdurman, in the event of any demonstration. Clashes between protesters and security forces cannot be ruled out.

Context

Anti-government protests began on December 19, 2018, as hundreds of protesters gathered in major urban centers - notably Atbara (River Nile state), Al-Qadarif (Al-Qadarif state), Port Sudan (Red Sea state), Khartoum, and Al-Fashir and Nyala in Darfur region. Protesters initially demanded increased government transparency and economic reforms but have since broadened their scope to demand the resignation of President Omar al-Bashir, who has been in power since 1989 and has vowed not to step down until at least 2020.

President Omar al-Bashir declared a one-year state of emergency on February 22, dissolved the cabinet, and dismissed all state governors; the length of the state of emergency was subsequently reduced to six months by parliamentary vote, and is expected to remain in effect until August 2019. Bashir also banned all unauthorized rallies and gatherings on February 25, following weeks of anti-government protests. Opposition leaders have defied the declaration and have called on supporters to continue protesting.

Advice

Individuals in Sudan are advised to monitor the situation, avoid all protests and public gatherings due to the risk of violence and arrest, anticipate disruptions to transportation and business near demonstration sites, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities.

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