July 10, 2012 (KHARTOUM) — The US State Department renewed Tuesday its call on the Sudanese government to investigate reports about violent repression of peaceful protesters, while Khartoum denied detention of activists stressing the police is in control of the situation.
- Sudanese demonstrators shouting anti-regime slogans during a protest outside the Wad Nabawi mosque in Khartoum’s twin city of Omdurman on July 6, 2012. (Getty)
Protests broke out in the Sudanese capital when President Omer Al-Bashir announced on 16 June the lifting of fuel and basic food provisions subsidies. The student demonstrations gradually triggered protests in the different parts of the country.
The security and police forces fired tear gas and rubber bullets against the peaceful protests but also detained over two thousands activists and political leaders. Many were arrested in their home to prevent the intensification of demonstrations.
The Sudan’s Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) announced the arrest of its leader Mayada Abdalla Souar Eldahab, who is also a member of Sudanese doctors association. The party said she was arrested at her home in Khartoum North on Tuesday.
"We call on the Government of Sudan to halt the violence and respect the universal rights and fundamental freedoms of its citizens, including freedom of expression, freedom of the press, and freedom of assembly," said the State Department in a statement released on Tuesday.
Washington for the second time in two weeks, said it "remains deeply concerned" with the cruel treatment of peaceful protesters by the Sudanese authorities which are accused of arbitrary arrest and torture of political activists.
The State Department further urged Khartoum to "immediately" investigate all these charges.
However, the general director of the Sudanese police, Hashim Osman Osman, played down the impact of these protests saying the security situation in Khartoum and other states is calm.
He admitted however the existence of "small and sporadic" student protests, before denying that the police arrest the protesters.
"We do not arrest (protestors), but we investigate the case and refer it to the court," he said.
Sudanese activists reported that Jeeraif suburb, in Khartoum, witnessed some protests on Tuesday but reliable sources in the capital explained that the tension was triggered by a traffic accident in a central street in the town because the municipality had neglected to install traffic signals.
The activists announced they prepare for another peaceful protest next Friday.
Sudanese lawyers announced Tuesday they will organise a peaceful procession to the presidential palace on Monday 16 July to hand a memorandum on difficult living conditions experienced by citizens and the government’s violations of the constitution and laws.
- Front page of Al Ray Al Aam, December 18, 2011 (TMCT)
In another development about the tense atmosphere in the Sudanese capital, the security services banned Tuesday’s issue of Al-Ray Alaam, a pro-regime daily newspaper, because it published a news article about shortage of bread flour.