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Tuesday, 22 October 2019

New talks on Sudan civil rule Monday: Protest movement

Reuters , Sunday 12 May 2019
Sudanese Protests
Sudanese protesters chant slogans during a rally outside the army headquarters in Sudan's capital Khartoum on Saturday, April 20, 2019 (Photo: AP)
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Sudan's army rulers and protesters are to hold fresh talks over handing power to a civilian administration on Monday, a spokesman for the protest movement told AFP.

On Saturday, the Alliance for Freedom and Change -- an umbrella for the protest movement -- said the generals had invited it for a new round of talks after several days of deadlock.

"The meeting was planned for today but it has now been postponed to Monday," alliance spokesman Rashid al-Sayed said.

Sayed did not explain why the talks were postponed, but sources in the alliance said that more time was needed for consultations within the leadership.

The latest planned round of talks come as thousands of protesters remain camped outside army headquarters in central Khartoum.

They say they are determined to force the ruling military council to cede power -- just as they pushed the military into deposing veteran president Omar al-Bashir on April 11.

The army generals and protesters are at loggerheads over who will sit on a new ruling body that would replace the existing military council.

The generals have proposed that the new council be military led, while the protest leaders want a majority civilian body.

Late last month, the alliance -- which brings together protest organisers, opposition parties and rebel groups -- handed the generals its proposals for a civilian-led transitional government.

But the generals have pointed to what they call "many reservations" over the alliance's roadmap.

They have singled out its silence on the constitutional position of Islamic sharia law, which was the guiding principle of all legislation under Bashir's rule but is anathema to secular groups like the Sudanese Communist Party and some rebel factions in the alliance.

"We want to hold the talks quickly and sort out all these points in 72 hours," the alliance said on Saturday.

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