After reforms to cut bread and fuel subsidies, hundreds of people gathered in Khartoum to protest economic conditions.

Hundreds of protesters took to the streets of Khartoum, the capital of Sudan, demanding that the transitional government resign due to controversial economic reforms.

With the support of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), reforms cut subsidies for gasoline and diesel, which more than doubled the price, and public dissatisfaction has grown.

“We want the regime to fall” and “No [IMF] Policy”, on Wednesday, the day after the IMF approved a $2.5 billion loan and debt relief agreement, demonstrators gathered outside the Presidential Palace in Khartoum shouted.

Since long-time leader Omar al-Bashir was deposed by the military in a large-scale anti-government demonstration in 2019, the Sudanese military and civilian government has been trying to unite the divided country and rebuild its relationship with the West. contact.

On Tuesday, the International Monetary Fund approved Sudan to begin seeking debt relief of about 56 billion U.S. dollars. Civilian Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok praised the Sudanese people for their “patience” and “endurance.”

“We are on the right track,” he said in a televised speech after the IMF announced the debt relief agreement.

Economic difficulties

However, since his departure, many economic crises that have sparked public anger against Bashir’s rule have persisted.

The Sudanese military-civilian coalition government has taken a series of bold measures to try to revive the hit and distorted economy where smuggling is rampant.

These measures include floating currencies, starting to address huge government subsidies, especially fuel subsidies, and seeking investment from international donors.

But some measures may also push some of the poorest people in the country further into poverty and face opposition from democracy activists who led a popular uprising against Bashir, who has ruled the country for nearly 30 years.

On Wednesday, protesters in Khartoum burned tires and waved banners that read “Bread for the poor” before being dispersed by police firing tear gas.

A demonstrator threw tires into the fire during Khartoum protests against economic conditions [Marwan Ali/AP Photo]

Al Jazeera’s correspondent in Khartoum, Ali Abu Shallah, was arrested by the authorities while reporting on the demonstration.

Another Arabic-language reporter from Al Jazeera said that a scuffle broke out between the protesters and the security forces trying to disperse the crowd.

He said security forces fired tear gas to disperse demonstrators in the twin city of Omdurman near the railway station in central Khartoum and across from it.

Protesters on Wednesday also commemorated the second anniversary of the massive anti-government protests that raged in the capital and other parts of the country in 2019, and the military leaders who pushed for the removal of Bashir began negotiations with civilians to end Sudan’s current power-sharing arrangements.

Authorities arrest Bashir party members

At the same time, the Sudanese authorities stated that they had arrested dozens of former members of the ruling party before the pro-democracy protests, accusing them of planning “destructive acts”.

Officials said police detained at least 200 members of the National Congress Party (NCP) earlier on Wednesday.

The military-civilian transitional government often accuses the loyalists of the NCP of trying to disrupt its work and disrupt the country.

“There are groups from the National Congress party preparing to commit acts of sabotage,” said Salahmana, a member of the official committee set up to dismantle the remnants of Bashir’s political and economic network.

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Hamdok issued a warning about the chaos and civil war that the previous government might cause.


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