Home | News    Friday 18 June 2004

Three persons killed, 12 injured in Sudan student riots: witness


KHARTOUM, June 18 (AFP) — Three people have been killed, including two students, and 12 others wounded, when police fired at student demonstrators who earlier torched government offices in Babanousa, in central Sudan’s West Kordofan state, a witness said Friday.

Speaking to AFP by telephone, opposition Popular Congress (PC) official Abdel Azim Mohamed, said the trouble began after university students gathered Thursday in front of police offices awaiting the return of a delegation they sent to negotiate the release of five students arrested the day before.

The students were seized when police stormed the student hostel, apparently in search of those responsible for burning down the offices of a financial aid fund for university students.

Mohamed said the students, all from the economics faculty, demonstrated and torched the offices to protest the fund’s failure to meet their demands for improved living standards.

"As soon as the delegation arrived at the gathering, the police began firing live bullets at the students, killing student Atta al-Mannan Mustafa," said Mohamed, who identified himself as PC secretary in West Kordofan.

"The police then began to fire indiscriminately at the demonstration that was joined by other people of Babanousa," said the PC official.

A man in his fifties was shot dead inside his shop, as was a high school student passing by.

Twelve male and female students were taken to hospital, with three of them suffering serious bullet wounds, Mohamed said.

Thousands of the people of Babanousa took part in the funeral of the three persons, chanting anti-government slogans, said Mohamed.

The incident and the deaths were confirmed by Babanousa Commissioner Ihaimir Ali Ihaimir, quoted Friday in the Akhbar Al Youm daily.

Ihaimir also said the authorities had arrested a policeman suspected of firing at the demonstrators and were interrogating him.

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