On Thursday, Sudanese protesters were met with an armored vehicle that fired tear gas bombs at them (Dec. 8). Some protesters carried shields and hurled stones at security forces.
Hundreds of protesters marched through Khartoum’s streets, led by the Resistance Committees group, demanding the removal of the country’s military rulers and rejecting a deal for a gradual transfer of power to civilian leaders.
Demonstrators in the capital attempted to march to the Republican Palace, the seat of the ruling military council, but were met with tear gas and water hoses from security forces. There have been no confirmed reports of casualties.
Adel Othman, a political activist, argued that “we completely reject the agreement” because it “fails to meet or fulfill even 1% of Sudanese street demands.”
Our “fundamental demands” are to “hold the martyrs’ murderers accountable” and “achieve tangible results in the area of justice as well as other areas related to achieving freedom and peace.”
How the agreement would divide power between a new civilian government and the military is another area of uncertainty. A new prime minister will preside over a “security and defense council” that will include a reformed military as a member.
Commentators, however, have questioned whether the military will properly abide by this commitment.
The grassroots group Resistance Committees has consistently rejected talks with the ruling junta. Both men who led last year’s coup, according to the protest group, should be tried in court. Whereas the country’s main pro-democracy group signed a “framework agreement” with the generals on Monday.
The Resistance Committees are among a number of major political players who have spoken out against the new agreement. Several former rebel leaders who have formed their own political bloc have also voted against the agreement.
The United Nations issued a statement on Thursday. The Security Council praised the agreement but expressed hope that “key political forces that have not yet signed” the transition agreement would “join the political process.”
A previous democratic transition agreement was terminated by a military coup in October 2021.