Sudan student protest stopped with violence

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Sudanese security forces used violence to break up a protest in Khartoum by students demanding the military council which ousted former president Omar al-Bashir hands power to civilians.

Demonstrators chanted “civilian, civilian” as they gathered in front of National Ribat University in Burri near the Ministry of Defence. Security forces quickly chased and beat them with batons, a Reuters witness said.

A few protests have happened at night in Khartoum and other state capitals since security forces stormed a sit-in outside the Defence Ministry on June 3, killing dozens. Monday’s was the first demonstration in Khartoum during the day.

Talks between the military and an opposition alliance collapsed after the sit-in was dispersed.

The sides wrangled for weeks over whether civilians or the military would control a new sovereign council to lead Sudan to elections after the military deposed and detained long-time president Bashir on April 11.

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and the African Union (AU) are trying to mediate.

The council rejected Ethiopia’s proposal which the opposition coalition agreed to, but did agree in principle to the AU plan.

The Sudanese Professionals’ Association, the country’s main protest group, said at a news conference the military council is “systematically trying to undermine the gains of the revolution by destroying freedom of expression and violently dispersing the protests they call for”.

The group will escalate protests and is organising a major demonstration for June 30.