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Sudan protests live updates: Omar Al Bashir steps down- reports

Sudan protests: Omar Al Bashir steps down- reports

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Reports of a coup as protest rally outside the army complex enters its sixth day

sudan protests
Demonstrators attend a protest rally demanding Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir to step down outside Defence Ministry in Khartoum, Sudan. Image Credit: Reuters

12.20pm

Sudan army raid group close to Bashir’s party

A team of Sudanese soldiers raided the offices of a group linked to President Omar Al Bashir’s ruling National Congress Party in Khartoum, witnesses said, reports AFP

The soldiers raided the offices of the Islamic Movement, the ideological wing of the NCP, on Thursday morning, witnesses told AFP.

11.32am

Bashir steps down as Sudan president

Sudan’s Bashir has stepped down and consultations are under way to set up a transitional council, said provincial minister to Al Hadath TV, reports Reuters

The Associated Press has also reported the same, quoting two senior Sudanese officials.

The officials say the military is now in talks about forming a transitional government. The officials, who hold high positions in the government and the military, spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the media.

They spoke ahead of an army announcement and amid reports of a coup to replace the president of 30 years following mass street protests against his rule.

10.30am

Bashir to step down: sources

Sudanese President Omar Al Bashir is stepping down, Arabiya reports citing sources.

Sudan has been rocked by months of anti-government protests. Bashir would be the second leader in the region to quit amid nationwide protests this month, following Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s resignation, reports Bloomberg.

Earlier Thursday there were reports of military vehicles surrounding the presidential palace as well as the TV building.

9.12am

‘Important announcement soon’

KHARTOUM:  Sudan state television said on Thursday that the armed forces would make an important announcement soon, amid speculation that a coup attempt could be underway against President Omar Al Bashir following months of protests against his 30-year rule.

“The armed forces will present an important statement shortly. Be ready for it,” the announcement on state television read, without giving further details.

As people waited for further word, state television and radio played patriotic music, reminding older Sudanese of how military takeovers unfolded during previous episodes of civil unrest.

The crisis has escalated since the weekend, when thousands of demonstrators began camping out outside the Defence Ministry compound in central Khartoum, where Bashir’s residence is located.

Clashes erupted on Tuesday between soldiers trying to protect the protesters and intelligence and security personnel trying to disperse them. At least 11 people died in the clashes, including six members of the armed forces, the information minister said citing a police report.

Since Dec. 19, Sudan has been rocked by persistent protests sparked by the government’s attempt to raise the price of bread, and an economic crisis that has led to fuel and cash shortages Opposition figures have called for the military to help negotiate an end to Bashir’s nearly three decades in power and a transition to democracy.

The demonstrators at the Defense Ministry had said that they wanted to submit a petition for the armed forces to take their side in their attempt to remove Bashir and his Islamist-backed administration.

Residents urged to throng protest site

Organisers of nationwide protests against Sudan’s President Omar Al Bashir called on Khartoum residents Thursday to mass at army headquarters as state media said the army would make an “important statement”.

“We call on our people from across the Khartoum capital and the region around to immediately go to the sit-in area and not leave from there until our next statement is issued,” the Sudanese Professionals Association said.

A sit-in outside army headquarters, which also houses Bashir’s residence, entered its sixth day on Thursday with protesters gathered in what the European Union has described as “an unprecedented number.” Source: GulfNews