GP Insights

GP Insights # 72, 15 June 2019

Sudan: The Military orders crackdown
Lakshmi V Menon

What happened?

Amidst escalating diplomatic pressures from the US and African countries, on 14 June, Sudan’s military admitted to ordering the brutal crackdown on Khartoum sit-in protestors. According to the TMC it “regrets that some mistakes happened”. 

What is the background?

Protestors had staged in Khartoum, a weeks-long sit-in which eventually led to the military overthrow of the long-time ruler, Omar al-Bashir in April. However, protests continued in hopes of a civilian-led government. Following the collapse of talks between Sudan’s military and the protest leaders, on June 3, military personnel orchestrated a deadly clampdown on the sit-in protest camp in Khartoum, leaving over 120 people dead. While the health ministry estimated the death toll at 61, over 40 bodies floated in the Nile River.

What does it mean?

Pro-democracy protesters are determined, and Sudan’s truly grassroots-protest is not going to be silenced. The struggle for a civilian-led transitional government is ongoing. TMC’s attempts to dwindle the protests have only called for international attention and has so far worked against them. The nation-wide civil disobedience movement demanding civilian rule has flamed political, geostrategic and humanitarian sentiments across the globe. 

Meanwhile, the economic picture is worsening, Sudan’s toppled Bashir has been charged with charges of corruption, social media across the world is turning blue in solidarity with the protestors and Sudan’s dream of democracy lingers.

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