Sudanese judges to march in Khartoum – judge

Sudan’s protests

Sudanese judges will march on Thursday from the Supreme Court in Khartoum to a sit-in outside the Defence Ministry, joining for the first time the anti-government protests, one of the judges said.

Omar al-Bashir was overthrown by the military on April 11 after months of protests against his rule. The march is the first by judges in Sudan since before Bashir took power in an Islamist-backed military coup in 1989.

After ousting Bashir, the military established a Transitional Military Council (TMC) to run Sudan for a period of up to two years.

The opposition has demanded a rapid handover of power to civilians. The sit-in outside the Defence Ministry, which began five days before Bashir’s removal, has continued as protest leaders press for faster and deeper change.

The Sudanese Professionals’ Association, which spearheaded the anti-Bashir protests, called for a million-strong march to take place at the Defence Ministry on Thursday.

On Wednesday evening, the opposition and the TMC agreed to form a committee to resolve their differences.

The TMC and the opposition had appeared on a collision course over popular demands for democratisation under civilian government. The SPA had declared on Sunday it would suspend talks with the military council.

Three members of the TMC resigned, including the head of its political committee tasked with negotiating with the opposition, the TMC said late on Wednesday, but their resignations are yet to be accepted.

The members were Lieutenant-General Omar Zain al-Abideen, head of the political committee, Lieutenant-General Jalal al-Deen al-Sheikh and Lieutenant-General Al-Tayeb Babakr Ali Fadeel.

One of the SPA’s demands was that the three lieutenant-generals be dismissed and tried over their alleged role in a crackdown that killed dozens of protesters.