Sudan’s prime minister disappointedly resigns after two months of coup
Hamdok announced his resignation in a speech broadcast on Sudanese television. He pointed out the lack of political “consensus”. He also called for a round table discussion, now that Sudan is at a “dangerous point”.
Civilians scattered across Sudan have been demonstrating in large numbers for weeks against the military coup at the end of October. The soldiers and paramilitaries then pushed aside the civilian politicians with whom they formally co-ruled. The cooperation began in 2019, after the military forces, under pressure from a popular uprising, ended the rule of authoritarian President Omar al-Bashir.
Prime Minister Hamdok was also ousted in a military coup at the end of October, but he surprisingly returned to his post in November. According to Hamdok and the commander of the Sudanese army, Major General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, it was agreed to form a new government of “technocrats” to ensure that Sudan would continue on the path of democracy. The reality turned out to be different: for example, the military imposed political appointments and prevented investigations into (financial) relations between senior soldiers and the regime of former President al-Bashir.
Hamdok then got caught between two fires: While he tried to exert some influence over the military on the political boards, he has been criticized in the streets over the past few months by many Sudanese civilians. Demonstrators accused Hamdok of legitimizing people who can never be trusted with his decision to return to the army after the October “coup”.
It is particularly famous for the Rapid Support Forces, a paramilitary group that has for years been involved in the genocide in Darfur and, more recently, has shot civilians demanding democracy. The Commander of the Rapid Support Forces, Lieutenant-General Mohamed Hamdan “Hemedti” Dagalo, holds a senior position in the current Sudanese administration.
Many Sudanese citizens now no longer want cooperation between civilian and military politicians, they are demanding full civilian administration with immediate effect. Pressure on Hamdok to appear has increased in recent weeks as more and more protesters have been shot by the military (para).
On Sunday, shortly before Hamdok announced his resignation, at least two other civilians were killed. According to local doctors, it happened in the town of Omdurman, adjacent to Khartoum, the capital of Sudan. At least 56 protesters have been killed in demonstrations since October.
Hamdok said on television on Sunday that as prime minister he did everything in his power to prevent a “disaster” in Sudan. In the meantime, brave Sudanese protesters don’t want to budge on the streets – any more than the army does.
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