According to eyewitnesses, security police used tear gas to disperse massive groups protesting against military rule and recent protester killings in Sudan’s capital Khartoum and adjacent areas on Tuesday.
The protests, the 13th round since a military takeover on Oct. 25, were organized by a local “resistance group” in Khartoum’s twin city of Omdurman in reaction to the deaths of seven protestors there on Thursday and Sunday.
They come only two days after Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok resigned, having served from 2019 until the coup and been reinstalled on Nov. 21 in a deal with the military that demonstrators generally rejected.
According to doctors, 57 people have been murdered in rallies against military authority since October.
Protesters have been aiming towards Khartoum’s presidential palace in recent weeks, with throngs from Omdurman and Bahri, across the Nile from Khartoum, attempting to cross bridges.
In response, the military closed many bridges and major roadways on Tuesday. The demonstrations were steered away from bridges by resistance teams.
A Reuters witness in Khartoum observed security officers, some armed with clubs and rifles, engaged in running fights with scattered demonstrators in an open field as they neared the palace. They shot tear gas and shock grenades, which demonstrators attempted to throw back.
Protestors in Omdurman reported they were subjected to strong tear gas at two rally locations, and that security officers pursued protesters on foot and in cars into nightfall. One demonstrator, who requested anonymity due to ongoing arrests, said he witnessed a property being set on fire when a tear gas canister fell on it.
Protests were also seen in the cities of Port Sudan, El Obeid, and Nyala, according to images published on social media. Internet and phone service were not disrupted, as they had been on previous protest days. A new demonstration is planned for Thursday.
In his resignation address, Hamdok stated that he attempted and failed to bring diverse forces together to agree on a course ahead for the transition that began with Omar al-ouster Bashir’s in April 2019.
General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the military leader, said in a statement on Wednesday that the door was open for all political factions and revolutionary youth to reach an agreement on completing the transition.