December 4, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – Sudan’s spy chief Mohammad Atta has described the plotters of a coup plot allegedly foiled by the authorities two weeks ago as “traitors”, vowing to bring them to “fair” trials amid a wave of new arrests in relation to the putative putsch.
- NISS chief Mohammed Atta (L) and ex-NISS chief Salah Gosh (R)
Addressing a security conference in the eastern town of Port Sudan on Tuesday, the director-general of the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) confirmed that elements from the NISS, the army (SAF) and politicians had participated in the planning of the coup that security authorities allegedly foiled on 22 September and arrested 13 individuals in connection with, including ex-NISS chief Salah Gosh, Brigadier General Mohamed Ibrahim Abdel-Galil “Wad Ibrahim” from SAF, Major General Adil Al-Tayeb from the NISS.
The government later announced that two members of an opposition party it did not name had also been arrested in relation to the attempted coup, saying they made contacts with the Darfur rebel Justice and Equality Movement (JEM).
Multiple security sources told Sudan Tribune that the authorities also arrested dozens of pro-government Islamist elements who belong to a group widely known as "Al-Sae’ohoon" who is linked to the coup and who formed the core of paramilitary forces fighting South Sudan rebels during the civil war in the former united Sudan.
Atta said that what the authorities originally called a “subversive attempt” was a full-fledged coup attempt. He claimed that the plotters had even drafted a statement proclaiming themselves as the leaders of a counter-revolution superseding the National Salvation Revolution, the alias adopted by the regime of Omer Al-Bashir when it seized power in 1989.
The NISS chief vowed that the government will show no leniency in dealing with the detainees through justice, describing them as traitors who will not be above justice.
In the capital Khartoum, meanwhile, Sudanese police arrested on Tuesday 10 members of the family of Ali Abdel Fatah, a pro-government Jihadist who was killed in the war with South Sudan, after they staged a protest demanding the release of his sibling who is a SAF officer detained in connection with the coup attempt. They were later released on bail.
It appears that more arrests are being carried out in relation to the coup. Security authorities have also arrested Retired-General Abdul Mula Musa Mohammed, the commissioner of Kosti town, the capital of the White Nile State in central Sudan, over the attempted coup.
An NISS force came from Khartoum and arrested the commissioner at his house near the NISS headquarters in the city. The commissioner, who was taken to Khartoum, was appointed to his position following the 2012 general elections. He is the holder of a PHD in media studies.
Earlier this week, NISS forces arrested two Islamists, one working as a cameraman for Al-Jazeera TV and the other is an active employee in the Al-Fidda (sacrifice) Media Center which used to produce films telling stories about the heroism of Jihadists in the war against South Sudan.
Al-Sae’ohoon issued a statement calling for a sit-in to be held on Tuesday to protest the detention of the alleged coup plotters but NISS authorities warned them against the move which was later cancelled.