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Wednesday, 18 September 2019

Sudan's main opposition Umma Party rejects general strike call

The National Umma Party, led by former premier Sadiq Al-Mahdi, said any such decision should be taken by a council of leaders of the protest movement

AFP , Sunday 26 May 2019
Mahdi
File Photo: Sudanese leading opposition figure Sadiq al-Mahdi addresses his supporters after he returned from nearly a year in self-imposed exile in Khartoum, Sudan December 19, 2018.(Photo: Reuters)
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The National Umma Party, Sudan’s main opposition group and supporter of the protest movement, said in a statement on Sunday it rejected its call to stage a two-day general strike because of a deadlock in talks with the Transitional Military Council (TMC).

“We reject the general strike announced by some opposition groups” in the umbrella protest movement, the Alliance for Freedom and Change, the National Umma Party said in a statement.

Its opposition to the strike slated to start Tuesday was a sign of division between protest leaders at a time of deadlock in negotiations with the TMC over installing a civilian administration.

"A general strike is a weapon that should be used after it is agreed upon by everybody," Umma said.

"We have to avoid such escalated measures that are not fully agreed."

The National Umma Party led by former premier Sadiq Al-Mahdi said any such decision should be taken by a council of leaders of the protest movement.

Such a council was still not in place and "will be composed in a meeting on Monday", it said.

It was Mahdi's elected government that Omar al-Bashir, who himself was deposed last month, toppled in an Islamist-backed coup in 1989.

In a recent interview with AFP, Mahdi warned protesters not to "provoke" the TMC as they had been instrumental in ousting Bashir.

*This story was edited by Ahram Online

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