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June 3, 2019

Sudan: Freedom House Condemns Military Attack on Peaceful Prodemocracy Protesters

Washington  -  June 3, 2019 —  Following the
violent dispersal of peaceful protesters by Sudanese security forces in Khartoum, which resulted in multiple fatalities, Freedom House issued the following statement:

“This is an unconscionable act by Sudanese security forces, including the notorious Rapid Support Forces, that demands international condemnation,” said Jon Temin, director of Africa programs at Freedom House. “The Sudanese citizens whose sustained, peaceful protests led to the removal of former president Omar al-Bashir remain committed to a transition to civilian leadership. The military forces in control have refused to accept that transition, and have now chosen to resort to the brutal tactics of the previous regime, using deadly force to remove and intimidate protesters—proving that the junta is little more than an extension of the former administration. These actions should be immediately investigated, and those responsible for the violence should be held to account alongside members of the former regime. Leaders of the international community—including the African Union, the United States, and countries in East and North Africa and the Persian Gulf—should support investigations and immediately condemn the horrific acts by the armed forces. The African Union should immediately suspend Sudan’s membership in the body.”

Background:

In April, Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir, who had ruled the country for 30 years, was removed through a military coup in the face of sustained protests by a wide coalition of labor unions and other citizen groups. Since then, protesters have continued to call for the Transitional Military Council to step aside and allow a transition to civilian leadership. Today, security forces violently broke up the protesters’ camps, reportedly resulting in the deaths of at least 13 protesters and injuring many others.

Sudan is rated Not Free in Freedom in the World 2019 and Not Free in Freedom on the Net 2018.

Freedom House is an independent watchdog organization that supports democratic change, monitors the status of freedom around the world, and advocates for democracy and human rights.

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