Sudan protests biggest yet, time for transition – UN

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Sudanese authorities must ensure a swift transition to a civilian government, as desired by large segments of the population and the African Union, UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet said in a statement.

She said mass protests across Sudan appear are “unprecedented in recent Sudanese history”, despite the difficulty of monitoring the situation because of an internet blackout imposed by the Transitional Military Council, which has ruled Sudan since President Omar al-Bashir was ousted in April.

The mass protests reportedly took place in more than ten major towns and cities and her office received allegations of excessive use of force against protesters, with at least 10 dead.

Bachelet called on the TMC to lift internet restrictions and investigate allegations of excessive use of force, including reported attacks on hospitals by Sudan’s Rapid Support Forces and other security forces.

“This recipe of restrictions, unmet promises and bouts of unbridled violence which are neither investigated nor punished is stoking massive resentment – as Sunday’s protests showed all too clearly,” she said in the statement.

“If this continues, it will be a recipe for disaster.”

Her previous offer to send a human rights monitoring team and calls for investigations into killings and thousands of reported rapes since June 3 was ignored, and an offer by the TMC to release prisoners of war was “a welcome gesture” but failed to materialise by a June 30 deadline.