Thousands rally in Sudan against coup, teargas fired

Wednesday November 17 2021
Sudanese demonstrators

Sudanese demonstrators run from teargas lobbed to disperse them. PHOTO | REUTERS


Thousands protested in Sudan's capital Wednesday against last month's coup, chanting "no to military power" in defiance of a crackdown that has already claimed 24 lives.

Several rallies broke out across Khartoum, even though telephone lines were cut and internet services have been disrupted since the October 25 putsch, AFP journalists reported.

Security forces fired tear gas on the protesters, causing several injuries, witnesses said.

The renewed protests came as US Secretary of State Antony Blinken urged Africans to watch out for rising threats to democracy as he began a three-nation tour of the continent in Kenya.

"We have seen over the last decade or so what some call a democratic recession," Blinken said in Nairobi.

The United States has suspended some $700 million in assistance to Sudan in response to the coup, which halted a democratic transition that followed the 2019 toppling of longtime dictator Omar al-Bashir.


Top general Abdel Fattah al-Burhan declared a state of emergency, ousted the government and detained the civilian leadership.

The army's power grab has derailed a transition to full civilian rule and sparked international condemnation.

Burhan insists the military's move "was not a coup" but a push to "rectify the course of the transition".

US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Molly Phee has been shuttling between the generals and the ousted civilian government in a bid to broker a way out of the crisis.