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Sudan timeline: July - September 2022: Junta continues to repress resistance as Pound founders and hunger grows

November 3 - 2022 DABANGA SUDAN
Thousands of people fled fierce fighting near El Roseires and Ed Damazin (Social media)
Thousands of people fled fierce fighting near El Roseires and Ed Damazin (Social media)

While the leaders of the ruling military junta in Sudan pledge that the military will withdraw from the political arena once a new civilian-led government has been formed, popular resistance demonstrations continue unabated. It has also been met with brutal suppression by security forces.

Six months after the coup d’état in which the Lt Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan and Lt Gen Mohamed ‘Hemeti’-led junta seized power, Sudan’s economy is in a catastrophic state, with food and fuel becoming unaffordable, the Sudanese Pound in abysmal decline, and soaring inflation.

The third quarter of 2022 was characterised by ongoing street protests against the ever-increasing authoritarianism of the junta. These are consistently met with excessive violence from the junta forces as the list of dead and injured civilians grows.

The deepening economic malaise means that ordinary Sudanese have difficulty making ends meet, as prices for basic commodities soar. For the hundreds of thousands of marginalised Sudanese such as the displaced people in Darfur, hunger has become commonplace as relief agencies lack the capacity, budget, and access to areas to meet the growing demand for humanitarian relief, bringing food insecurity to crisis level.

Violent inter-tribal and inter-communal disputes force more civilians to flee their homes, with new clashes in Blue Nile state and West Kordofan adding to the number of displaced people in dire need of humanitarian assistance. Lawlessness and banditry by armed groups scourge Darfur and Kordofan, while inter-communal and tribal clashes erupted across the country.

Negotiations surrounding the formation of a transitional government continue with the encouragement of the international community. However, differences and conflicting interests and stances of the divergent Sudanese stakeholders mean that progress is slow.

While the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court visited Darfur, the United Nations expresses its grave concerns about the deteriorating humanitarian conditions and human rights situation in the country, and Sudan is officially classified as a ‘country in crisis’.

Anti-junta demonstration sit-in in Khartoum North (Bahri) in July (Cocial media)

 

July: Street protests against the military junta continue across the country. Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan, leader of the October 2021 coup, says the military will withdraw from the political scene as soon as a new civilian-led government has been formed. Suppression of freedoms is increasing again on all levels of society. The continuing economic crisis leads to hunger among many Sudanese.

July 1: The international community condemns the excessive violence against participants of the June 30 anti-junta demonstrations in Khartoum, in which nine protesters were killed. Hundreds were detained, and dozens of others went missing. The head of the UN Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS), Volker Perthes, says that the talks between the Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) and the military are nearing an agreement on a transitional government. Sudan’s poverty rates may potentially be even higher than expected.

July 2: A person is killed in West Kordofan tribal clashes over land.

July 4: Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan, Chairman of the Sovereignty Council and Commander-in-Chief of the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) announces that the military will no longer participate in the current talks about a new transitional government.

July 5: Sudan sit-ins grow, so does scepticism about the announced military withdrawal. Reports about insecurity in Darfur and South Kordofan continue.

July 6: Politicians, resistance committees express their lack of confidence in El Burhan’s speech. The AU-IGAD-UNITAMS Trilateral Mechanism suspends its coordination of a national dialogue. West Darfur tribal leaders sign a reconciliation agreement brokered by Mohamed ‘Hemeti’ Dagalo, Deputy-Chairman of the Sovereignty Council and Commander-in-Chief of the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF). Many Sudanese are not able to buy a sheep anymore for the Eid El Adha, as the economic situation continues to deteriorate.

July 8: Beja nazirs in eastern Sudan warn of dire consequences in case a future political settlement ignores the interests of the region.

July 12: According to human rights defender Saleh Mahmoud, the recent Darfur reconciliation agreements brokered by Hemeti are superficial. El Burhan names retired a number of army and police generals as ambassadors.

July 13: Reports of violent suppression of freedoms that characterised the 30-year regime of Omar Al Bashir are increasing again on all levels of society.

July 14: While hunger deepens in Darfur camps, the World Food Programme (WFP) in Sudan ‘must make heart wrenching decisions’ because of a large funding shortfall. Strikes of medics in Kordofan and Darfur demanding better pay and work environment close entire hospitals.

Food aid to Darfur displaced (File photo: UN Photo)

 

July 15: More than 6,000 Sudanese have been affected by heavy rains and floods. The US Congress approves a resolution condemning the October 2021 military coup, while John Godfrey is appointed US Ambassador to Sudan.

July 18: At least 65 people are killed in renewed fighting in Blue Nile state.

July 19: The WFP in Sudan reports a new sharp rise in food prices.

July 20: Opposition groups blame the junta and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North under the leadership of Malik Agar (SPLM-N Agar) for renewed fighting in Blue Nile state. People living in the area of Tawila in North Darfur are complaining about repeated attacks by gunmen.

July 21: The World Bank supports the WFP in Sudan with funds for a new food emergency project.

July 22: Opposition groups call for a broad front against the military junta to prevent civil wars in the country. RSF assault people in North Kordofan.

July 24: The Alliance of Forces for Radical Change (AFRC) led by the Communist Party of Sudan launches its agenda.

July 25: Sudan Liberation Movement infighting causes mass displacement in South Darfur.

July 26: Government forces use excessive violence against anti-junta protesters in Khartoum.

July 27: A Blue Nile state native administration leader accuses the state governor of colluding with Hausa tribesmen.

July 28: Former members of the Sovereignty Council say that the current situation may lead to the country’s eventual descent into war and that the military junta is preparing to tighten its grip on the country. The Beja Nazirs Council withdraws the file of the Eastern Sudan peace protocol from Hemeti. A high-level committee begins investigating the recent fighting in Blue Nile state that displaced more than 30.000 people. Angry port workers in Red Sea state protest against the appointment of new workers on an ethnical basis.

July 29: Activists call for street protests following the publication of a CNN report on Russia ‘looting’ Sudan’s gold reserves. Government forces are allegedly involved in South Kordofan robberies.

July 31: At least 105 protesters are wounded in Khartoum peace demonstrations.

Poster promoting protest marches

 

August: The number of Sudanese facing acute food insecurity is rising. Farmers face great financial challenges and warn that the current agricultural season may fail. Strikes of civil servants continue, demanding a better pay, while food prices continue to soar. Pro-democracy as well as pro-military groups are formed and work on proposals for a new government. Two separate groups propose a new constitutional charter.

August 1: West Darfur activists report that 177 people have been illegally detained in the state.

August 2: The Sudan Troika (USA, UK, Norway) welcomes statements by military and opposition groups on a new “civilian-led government“. The Forces of Freedom and Change-Central Council (FFC-CC) draws up a draft of a new constitutional charter. Transport tariffs increase dramatically win Khartoum. Floods in Sudan and eastern Chad claim life and livelihoods. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) claims that a ‘successful conclusion to negotiations’ between Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia over the controversial Ethiopian dam (GERD) is ‘within reach’.

August 4: Financial analyst Hafiz Ismail warns for the disastrous effects of the recent fuel and electricity price increases recently imposed by the Ministry of Finance.

August 5: Hunger continues to worsen in Sudan as a quarter of the population faces acute food insecurity. At least 197 tribal leaders and activists have been held in West Darfur in an RSF campaign targeting those who refuse to partake in RSF-led reconciliation efforts.

August 7: UNITAMS head Volker Perthes urges the Sudanese to reach a political agreement in order to address ‘major concerns outside Khartoum as soon as possible.

August 8: Farmers in eastern Sudan face constraints in obtaining the necessary bank credit to start agricultural operations. The Emergency Lawyers accuse the authorities of fabricating charges against activists.

August 9: The Sudanese Federation of Chambers of Industry threatens to take escalatory steps if the government does not respond to its demands to lower production costs. A sit-in against harmful mining practices in River Nile state has succeeds in halting all mining operations in the area.

August 10: RSF Commander ‘Hemeti’ announces his intention to curb Darfur’s tribal violence and help the return of the displaced across the region. A group of men carrying metal polls storm the Sudanese Bar Association’s (SBA) dialogue on a new transitional constitutional framework. The dialogue concludes with a set of recommendations, including distancing the military from politics.

August 11: Sudanese farmers expect the agricultural season to fail, due to the continuing high inflation.

August 12: Medics strike in various states, demanding their financial dues according to the 2022 salary structure.

August 14: Six children die and a further 2,322 are reported as malnourished in Kalma camp for the displaced in South Darfur.

August 15: The Sudanese Pound falls sharply. Farmers in South Kordofan and Sennar protest the delay in funding for the current agricultural season.

August 16: The Sudan People’s Call initiative calls for the army to be ‘supreme authority’ in the country.

August 17: Finance Minister Jibril Ibrahim says he expects no ‘external support’ for the country’s 2023 budget. Sudan offers more oil blocks to a Russian oil company. The AU-IGAD-UNITAMS Mechanism meets with members of the FFC-CC and the Sudan People’s Call initiative.

Sudanese Pounds (File photo: RD)

 

August 18: The Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North splits into two factions. The National Accord Forces (NFA), formerly called Forces for Freedom and Change-National Accord (FFC-NA), present their political vision.

August 19: The Ministry of Interior’s decision to establish a new ‘Community Police’ unit triggers widespread controversy in the country. Attacks on farmers in Kordofan increase.

August 21: The Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Karim Khan, arrives in Nyala, South Darfur, and holds talks with displaced community leaders in Kalma camp.

August 22: Displaced people from North Darfur’s Zamzam camp block the El Fasher-Nyala road in protest against insecurity in the area and lack of basic services. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Sudan reports that the humanitarian needs are “at an all-time high in Sudan”. Members of the suspended Empowerment Removal Committee (ERC) accuse Darfur Governor Minni Minawi of protecting corruption in El Gezira. The Beja Nazirs Council says it will not participate in the Eastern Sudan conference to be held in Khartoum.

August 23: UN OCHA reports that around 226,200 people have been affected by the rainy season in Sudan. Strikes continue across the country.

August 25: The newly appointed US Ambassador to Sudan says that a civilian-led government will improve US-Sudanese cooperation. At least 18 protesters are injured during today’s Marches of the Millions in Khartoum.

August 26: The Eastern Sudan conference in Khartoum raises criticism among grassroots groups.

August 29: The Sudanese Journalists Syndicate democratically elects its chair for the first time in 33 years.

August 30: Sudan’s resistance committees are working on unifying their two political charters, but the FFC-CC refuse to merge theirs. A Beja Nazirs Council faction says it is preparing self-determination for the east. Japan pledges funds for the WFP emergency aid to Sudan displaced.

August 31: Pro-democracy as well as pro-military groups are working on proposals for a new government. The Red Sea state Security Committee plan to enforce the articles of the Sudan Penal Code that prohibit civilians to military organise themselves and carry weapons.

September: New bloody clashes erupt in Blue Nile state and West Kordofan. Various political groups meet to discuss possibilities of governing during the transitional period. The draft constitution text of the Sudan Bar Association raises criticism. Strikes and demonstrations continue across the country to protest the dire economic situation and the military junta. The UN expresses its grave concerns about the deteriorating humanitarian conditions and human rights situation in the country. Sudan is officially classified as a ‘country in crisis’.

A market stall in Sudan (File photo: Social media)

 

September 1: Seven are killed in renewed intercommunal fighting in Blue Nile state. El Burhan demands apologies from Britain for colonial crimes. Members of the National Accord Forces (NAF) group, dominated by former rebel leaders, meet with the military.

September 2: UN report laments the deteriorating human rights situation in Sudan. The newly appointed US ambassador to Sudan meets with representatives of the FFC-CC and resistance committees. The death toll of the clashes in Blue Nile state rises to 21. North Darfur officials visit the sit-in set up by displaced from Zamzam camp near El Fasher, to protest the insecurity in the area.

September 3: Sudan’s Humanitarian Aid Commission (HAC) re-registers 23 ‘Islamist NGOs’.

September 4: Heavy rainfall since August left 122 dead and destroyed more 123,420 feddans of crops.

September 5: Blue Nile state witnesses ‘cautious calm’. More witnesses testify against Darfur janjaweed leader Ali Kushayb at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague. The FFC-CC withdraw from a meeting called by the Sudan Quartet (USA, UK, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE) with former rebel movements and the military on Saturday.

September 6: Employees working in the electricity sector announce strike, demanding the implementation of the 2022 salary structure.

September 7: UNITAMS head Volker Perthes tells Radio Dabanga that urgent political cooperation is needed to avert the collapse of the country. The Sudan Bar Association will consult other pro-democracy groups on its draft constitution. The Zamzam camp sit-in is lifted as most of the demands of the displaced have been met. Environmental activists prevent an army tanker from reaching a gold mining plant in Northern State. UK-based REDRESS organisation says that Sudanese laws need reform to ban torture-tainted evidence.

September 8: Resistance committees in Khartoum agree on tight cooperation between them and other democratic forces to build a democratic Sudan. There are plans to merge their political charter with the one developed by resistance committees in Wad Madani, El Gezira.

September 9: Imams in Khartoum denounce ‘corrupt practices’ of the federal Minister of Finance.

September 11: The Central Bank of Sudan reports that gold remains the country’s largest export commodity. International stakeholders welcome Sudan Bar’s draft constitution. North Darfur displaced request international protection during a visit of US Ambassador John Godfrey to the Zamzam camp.

September 12: Families of missing people, among them young protesters, demand DNA tests of unidentified bodies in mortuaries. UNICEF and Save the Children report that about one third of the children in Sudan are not going to school.

September 13: At least six people are killed in West Kordofan tribal clashes. More than 70 demonstrators are injured in Khartoum. Traders and workers in various parts of the country strike to protest increased taxes and unpaid wages. UNITAMS head Volker Perthes reports to the UN Security Council that Sudan’s humanitarian crisis and insecurity reached record levels.

September 15: The Blue Nile state fighting this month displaced more than 66,000 people. A Sudanese economist warns of a ‘revolution of the hungry’ if the inflation is not addressed.

September 16: Strikes across the country over unpaid salaries and raises continue. People in Port Sudan ring the alarm bell over increased crystal meth use among youth.

September 17: Hemeti renews the military’s commitment to exit the political scene, while the Minister of Finance claims that the junta will maintain control over multiple Sudanese authorities. Khartoum resistance committees commemorate the ‘January 17 Massacre’.

September 19: Hamar and Misseriya tribal leaders in West Kordofan agree to cease hostilities. According to Abdelaziz El Hilu, head of the SPLM-N El Hilu, the draft constitution recently proposed by the Sudanese Bar Association does not address the roots of the country’s crises.

Distribution of food in Darfur (File photo: WVI.ORG)

 

September 21: Working Sudanese are not able anymore to make ends meet. UN OCHA reports that the humanitarian situation in Sudan continued to worsen during the past two months.

September 22: Junta leader El Burhan tells the 77th UN General Assembly session in New York that ‘Sudan will establish a real democracy‘. Members of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament visit Khartoum. A group of Sudanese women presents its gender-responsive constitutional vision.

September 24: The Sudan Bar Association retorts criticism and says that its constitution draft ‘heavily curbs military influence’.

September 25: The African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies (ACJPS) accuses the Sudanese authorities to continue to harass journalists in the country.

September: Tax increases and salary issues spark more strikes in Sudan.

September 26: Market closures further spread across the country. The Information Crimes Prosecution blocks the website of El Sudani newspaper.

September 27: Electricity workers in Khartoum lift their second strike following a salary agreement. Sudanese farmers reject raised taxes and bemoan pest threats to crops. El Burhan urges the international community to support political consensus in Sudan. Remarks of US Ambassador Godfrey on Sudan’s relation with Russia prompt a sharp Russian retort.

September 28: 55 resistance committees and other pro-democracy groups sign the Revolutionary Charter for the Establishment of the People’s Authority.

September 29: Thousands of Sudanese take to the streets in new protest Marches of the Millions. The WFP and the World Bank announce that over a million Sudan received cash assistance in the past two weeks.

September 30: The Famine Early Warning System Network (FEWS NET) reports that staple food costs increased 300 per cent since 2021. Because of the growing acute food insecurity, recent flooding, and mass displacement, Sudan is now classified as a ‘country in crisis’.


Previous timelines:

Sudan timeline April - June 2022: Popular resistance to junta escalates, banditry and intercommunal strife in Darfur and across Sudan as 15 million face hunger

Sudan timeline January - March 2022: Political turmoil, lawlessness as attempts to revive democratic transition collapse

Sudan timeline October-December 2021: Democratic transition under siege, foreign finance cut as military sizes power

Sudan timeline July-September 2021: Political discord escalates, poverty grows, as thousands are displaced by floods, violence

Sudan timeline April-June 2021: Waves of violence continue, international debt relief brings hope for economic upturn

Sudan timeline January-March 2021: Holdout rebels in from the cold, Sudanese pound devalued, COVID-19 vaccine roll-out begins

Sudan timeline October-December 2020: Peace accord signed, COVID second wave bites, security fears as UNAMID withdraws

Sudan timeline July-September 2020: Public anger at slow implementation of revolution, floods devastate communities countrywide

Sudan timeline April-June 2020: Covid-19 marks all aspects of life, inflation soars

Sudan timeline January-March 2020: Little relief to the country’s economic, security woes

Sudan timeline October-December 2019: Interim government put to the test

Sudan timeline July-September 2019: Turbulent transformation from tyranny

Sudan timeline December 2018-April 2019: How did civil discontent propel Sudan towards the overthrow of Al Bashir?


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