Sudanese revolutionaries prepare for Saturday’s clash with army
Many are hoping for the same result. That the spectacle of mass civilian opposition in Khartoum and in the cities of the country will convince the high command that the people will no longer accept a repressive military rule.
The demonstrators will march after a week-long national strike and an almost universal condemnation of the putsch in Sudan and its neighbors as well as by several international organizations.
Minimum support from Burhan
There is hardly a spark of public support for Burhan. Perhaps this is why his former military partner, General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo ‘Hemeti’, commander of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) militia, appears to have crashed this week. Hemeti was noticeably absent from the bizarre and mostly doomed Burhan press conference on October 26.
Foreign diplomats say Hemeti told them that he tried to dissuade Burhan from the coup. What they say is the signal for nervous laughter. No one believes a word of it, but Hemeti hopes to intervene somehow if Burhan is forced to leave.
Others warn that he everything could end in a bloodbath. There are few signs that Burhan and his close allies are ready to make concessions, let alone step down.
Another point of pressure on Burhan would be for the latent schisms in the armed forces, militias and spy agencies to open up even more. Activists say there are enough junior and middle officers to stop Burhan’s latest junta project.
Many suspect that his agenda is for the military to dominate the transition and with the approach of the elections, and Burhan to exchange his khaki uniform for a jalabiya and run for president with the armed forces behind him.
This reflects the rise of General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in neighboring Egypt: fictitious economic chaos, coup d’état, and then state-sponsored presidential race.
Already this week, more than 12 people were killed and at least 140 seriously injured, in Khartoum, Madani in the center and al-Fashir in Darfur in the west. Most of them were reportedly shot dead by soldiers and RSF militia fighters under Hemeti’s command.
“Little pressure to slow down the security services”
Despite near-global condemnation of the putsch, including by the African Union and thousands of African civic organizations, Burhan felt little pressure to curb the security services.
So desperate to form a government to appease the critics, Burhan sent prayers to Hamdok to join a reconstituted team of technocrats to work alongside the generals in a military-controlled transition.
Although there was no repeat of the June 2019 massacre in Khartoum, when fighters from Hemeti’s RSF militia dismantled a protest camp killing more than 120 people in a single night, security services rushed to suspected opposition centers across the country.
State security agents in civilian clothes raided homes this week, targeting critical journalists and suspected members of resistance committees.
More than 40 prominent activists, journalists and politicians were kidnapped this week, along with hundreds of other community activists. The deposed Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok was still under house arrest on October 29. His media advisor, Faisal Mohamed Salih, was arrested on October 26.
With both the The AU and the UN Security Council condemning the putsch, and with China and Russia failing to publicly defend it, Burhan tried to set up an alternative civilian cabinet.
So desperate to concoct a government to appease the critics, Burhan sent prayers to Hamdok for join a reconstituted team of technocrats work alongside the generals in a military-controlled transition.
When Jibril Ibrahim, the sacked Minister of Finance and leader of the Islamist Movement for Justice and Equality was invited by the BBC On October 28, why the military would try such a plan, he said: “Transitions can get very complicated. “
Ibrahim, considered close to the military, added that he would be happy to return to the finance ministry post.