Sudan's military council head: Suspend talks with protesters for 72 hours

Sudan's military council head: Suspend talks with protesters for 72 hours

But in the early hours of Thursday, the chief of Sudan's ruling military council, General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, announced the talks had been suspended for 72 hours as the security in the capital had deteriorated.

"Eight wounded from live bullets so far", Amjad Farid, a spokesman for the umbrella protest group the Alliance for Freedom and Change wrote on Facebook.

A Reuters witness and Sudanese witnesses said that troops in military vehicles using the logo of the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) fired extensively as they tried to clear demonstrators on al-Mek Nimir Avenue in central Khartoum, near the Foreign Ministry.

The protest movement is demanding a civilian-led transition, which the generals have steadfastly resisted since bowing to their demands and toppling longtime autocrat Omar al-Bashir.

"The military council has told us that the protesters must dismantle the barricades and go back to the sit-in" out side the army complex where thousands have camped for weeks, Sayid said.

Security forces were later seen chasing protesters in downtown Khartoum and removing some roadblocks that demonstrators had put up, an AFP correspondent said.

At least four people died and dozens were injured during protests on Monday as the Transitional Military Council (TMC) and opposition Declaration of Freedom and Change Forces (DFCF) said they had reached a partial agreement for transition.

Earlier on Wednesday, protest leaders told AFP of the ruling military council's decision to suspend talks.

The rights group Physicians for Human Rights has estimated that Sudanese security forces killed more than 60 people during a failed crackdown on the protests.

Protesters walk towards the sit-in protest outside the Sudanese military headquarters, in Khartoum, Sudan, Tuesday, May 14, 2019.

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It added: "We are calling on revolutionaries to restrain themselves, be calm and peaceful and avoid any confrontation or clash with any group whatever the circumstances".

Gen Atta said the DFCF would have two-thirds of the seats on a 300-member transitional legislative council, while the rest would be taken by parties not members of the alliance.

The first six months will be allocated to signing peace accords with rebels in the country's war zones like Darfur, Blue Nile and South Kordofan.

The new council is expected to form a transitional civilian government, which would then prepare for the first post-Bashir election after the three-year changeover period ends.

"He said the TMC, which took over after overthrowing and jailing Bashir last month, had chose to remove all barricades put up by demonstrators beyond the area where the protesters had been camping since April 6 outside the Defence Ministry".

Protest leader Yousef downplayed the role of the proposed ruling council, insisting Sudan would have a powerful cabinet.

In a televised speech broadcast early on Thursday, Burhan read out a long list of what he described as violations of understandings reached with protest leaders and said the TMC had made a decision to suspend talks for 72 hours "until a suitable atmosphere is created to complete an agreement".

"All powers will be in the cabinet's hand, which will be formed by the Alliance for Freedom and Change", he said.

Tensions have soared since Monday's shootings, which the United States blamed on security forces.

The military denies the allegations and blames what it calls "infiltrators".

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