Human Rights & Public Liberties

Human Rights & Public Liberties

Published on: 13 Jan, 2021

Sudanese Prime Minister Hamdok and civilian leaders arrested

Published on: 25 October, 2021


Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok  [Reuters]

Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok [Reuters]

In what Sudanese pro-democracy groups are describing as ‘an organised attempt by the military to retake power’, Sudanese security forces have arrested Sudanese Prime Minister  Abdalla Hamdok and moved him to an undisclosed location. Hamdok was arrested after he refused to make a statement in support of the coup.

According to the Ministry of Information the Prime Minister is being held ‘under house arrest’.

The Sudanese Professional’s Association (SPA), Sudan’s main pro-democratic political group, said at least 5 people have been detained.

Those detained include members of the Sovereignty Council such as  Industry Minister Ibrahim al-Sheikh, Information Minister Hamza Baloul, and Mohammed al-Fiky Suliman, member of the country’s ruling transitional body, known as the Sovereign Council, as well as Faisal Mohammed Saleh, a media adviser to Hamdok. Ayman Khalid, governor of the state containing the capital, Khartoum, was also arrested, according to the official Facebook page of his office.

The SPA described the military’s moves as an apparent military coup and called on the public to take to the streets to protest ‘peacefully’.

The internet and phone lines have been shut down. The military is blocking access to various places such as bridges and the Presidential palace.

Thousands of people have again taken to the streets of Khartoum to show their anger against the sudden military takeover.

Commenting on Al Jazeera news, Marwan Bishara, Al Jazeera’s political editor said that the African Union should take a stand against the violence by the military. He said: ‘There are forces in the region that do not want to see Sudan flourish. There have been counter-revolutionary forces in the region and they have been quite successful.’

Dissolution of Sovereignty Council

In a statement on Monday Sovereignty Council Chairman Abdel Burhan dissolved the Sovereignty Council and said: ‘ We are convinced that the Sudanese people deserve a nation. During the transitional period the armed forces and the people were aware of the partnership in order to achieve the goals of the people through general elections. We need not to distract the nation. We need not to destroy the nation. Some political powers are still trying to maintain in their hands without paying attention to political, economic and social threats. We are declaring a state of emergency. We urge everyone to abide by the Juba agreement of 2020. We believe the December revolution is ongoing.’

Jehanne Henry, former East Africa director at Human Rights Watch said to Al Jazeera: ‘In light of the fact that Burhan dissolved the government entirely this is a full-fledged military coup, designed to manufacture a new political reality in Sudan in violation of the constitutional document that the two parties signed in August 2019 to form the transitional government.’