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International community call for return to democratic transition in Sudan

November 18 - 2021 NAIROBI / KHARTOUM / BERLIN
Poster promoting the marches of November 17
Poster promoting the marches of November 17

Reports of violence and the use of live ammunition on civilian demonstrators, as thousands of people took to the streets of Khartoum and other cities in Sudan yesterday, have prompted leading members of the international community to reiterate their demand to move Sudan back onto the path to democratic transition, after a military junta seized power in a coup d’état on October 25.

US Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken, stressed the need to restore the democratic transition in Sudan to its track.

Blinken said in a press conference on Wednesday during his visit to Nairobi that restoring the democratic path begins with the return of civilian Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok to his position. He said Sudan would restore international support if the civilian government returned. The military seizure of power in Sudan must be reversed.

US Assistant Secretary of State, Molly Phee, announced that she has met Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok and discussed with him ways to restore the democratic transition in Sudan.

The Norwegian embassy announced on Wednesday that Norway’s Special Envoy to Sudan and South Sudan, Endre Stiansen, has arrived in Khartoum, in order to urge the parties to return to the transitional democratic path.

The spokesman for the German Foreign Ministry in the Middle East and North Africa, Dennis Kumetat, called for the restoration of a civilian government led by Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok. He also called via social media to protect peaceful demonstrators and guarantee freedom of the press.

In a separate statement via social media, UN Special Rapporteur Freedom of Association, Clement Voule, says that he is “deeply concerned for the safety of all arbitrarily detained, as military continue to pick up activists from homes and hospitals, denying access to families and courts. State of emergency does not justify rights abuses. Access to detainees & due process rights must be respected.

“These systematic abuses by Sudan military - use of excessive lethal force, resulting in civilian deaths  and serious injuries, repression, arbitrary arrests of protesters, defenders and journalists must immediately stop. Military commanders will be held accountable for these abuses.

“I received alarming reports of increased use of lethal force by military against peaceful protesters today, as thousands continue to march defying violence. I urge the international community to put pressure on Sudan to immediately stop the repression against civilians and respect their rights,” the UN Special Rapporteur concludes.

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