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Sudan: Two protesters killed in rally

February 15, 2022

The protesters were shot dead by security forces in a crackdown on anti-coup rallies that have been commonplace since a coup in October. Three high profile civilian figures have been arrested in recent days.

Protesters march in Khartoum, one raises a Sudanese flag
Thousands rallied against the October coup in Khartoum and OmdurmanImage: AP Photo/picture alliance

Two protesters were shot dead by Sudanese security forces on Monday, medics said.

Regular mass protests have been held in Sudan since a military coup that occurred in October 2021. The putsch was led by army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan.

The coup derailed a power-sharing agreement between the army and civilians negotiated after former President Omar al-Bashir was ousted in 2019.

Protesters, some carrying banners or wearing blue helmets, standing on a road amid bricks and smoke
Security forces fired tear gas canisters at demonstratorsImage: Mahmoud Hjaj/AA/picture alliance

What happened during the protests?

AFP reporters said that thousands rallied in the capital Khartoum and the neighboring city of Omdurman. The news agency cited witnesses as saying that protests also occurred in the northeastern city of Port Sudan and in the western Darfur region.

Protesters shouted slogans demanding authorities release activists who had been arrested, while others carried giant pictures of protesters who had been killed during previous rallies.

In recent days security forces have arrested three high-profile civilian figures connected to a task force that was working to dismantle the rule of al-Bashir. An activist lawyers group said last week that more than 100 political detainees were being held without charge.

Security forces fired tear gas canisters at demonstrators on Monday as they tried to approach the presidential palace.

Protesters around a tear gas cannister
Security forces fired volleys of tear gas canisters at demonstrators as they tried to approach the presidential palaceImage: Mahmoud Hjaj/AA/picture alliance

What did medics and police say?

The Independent Central Committee of Sudan Doctors said that one protester was killed after he was shot in "the neck and chest by live rounds by coup forces," while another was hit by "live bullets to the left shoulder which penetrated the chest."

At least 80 people have been killed by security forces since the coup occurred in October 2021, according to medics.

Police said that protesters encroached on important strategic buildings and institutions and engaged in property damage. "Nevertheless, the police acted with reasonable legal force," police said.

Sudanese police said in a statement that at least 102 officers were "severely wounded", and that protesters "smashed the front" of the parliament building.

While Sudanese forces have denied using live rounds on protesters, Human Rights Watch has quoted witnesses as saying that security forces have used both "live ammunition" and fired tear gas canisters directly at crowds.

sdi/jsi (AP, AFP, Reuters)