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Sudan’s al-Bashir says protests will not change government

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Omer al-Bashir in Nyala on 14 January 2019 (ST Photo)
January 14, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir on Monday said the ongoing protests wouldn’t topple his regime vowing to punish those who carry out the acts of sabotage.

Protests that first erupted on 19 December over a government decision to triple the price of bread have swiftly escalated into nationwide rallies, with protesters calling on President al-Bashir to step down.

Riot police and security agents fired tear gas, rubber bullets and live ammunition to disperse the protests.

A government fact-finding commission has recorded 24 deaths while Amnesty International said at least 40 people have been killed. Also, thousands of protesters have been arrested.

Speaking to crowds in Nyala, capital of South Darfur on Monday, a day after protesters took to the streets there for the first time, al-Bashir pointed to government efforts to address the economic crisis.

“We acknowledged the existence of the crisis but it wouldn’t be addressed through sabotage and destruction,” he said.

He stressed that his government would be changed only through the ballot box and not by carrying out acts of sabotage and protests, accusing unnamed parties of seeking to destabilize security.

The Sudanese president stressed the security situation is stable across the country, renewing the call for rebel movements to join the peace process.

He thanked a number of countries including Egypt, Ethiopia, Chad and South Sudan for dispatching senior delegations to Khartoum to check on the situation in the country.

(ST)

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