Sudan protesters demand civilian rule, military council says ready to comply
KHARTOUM: Sudan`s main protest group on Sunday demanded the immediate handover of power to a civilian transitional government, saying it would keep up the street demonstrations which ousted former President Omar al-Bashir last week to achieve its aims.
The Sudanese Professionals` Association (SPA) called for the establishment of a transitional council which would be protected by the armed forces, adding it would exert “all forms of peaceful pressure to achieve the objectives of the revolution”.
The military council that replaced Bashir, who was ousted on Thursday by the military after three decades in power, announced a raft of new decisions late on Sunday including the retirement of Defence Minister Awad Ibn Auf. Ibn Auf, and his deputy, resigned as head of the transition council after they assumed the positions following Bashir`s ouster.
The council also appointed Lieutenant General Abu Bakr Mustafa as intelligence chief, succeeding Salah Abdallah Mohamed Saleh, commonly known as Salah Gosh, who resigned on Friday. It did not name a successor to Ibn Auf.
The transitional council spokesman told a news conference in Khartoum on Sunday the military was ready to work with opposition groups to establish a new civilian government.
“The ball is now in the political forces` court when it comes to the prime minister or a government,” Shams El Din Kabbashi said. “If they are ready today to approve anything, we are ready to implement it,” he added.
Lieutenant General Omar Zain al-Abideen, another member of the council, said the opposition would have one week to submit their suggestions.
The head of the military council, Lieutenant General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, had earlier said the council had invited the main opposition parties and protest organisers for a meeting.
But the SPA and other main opposition parties, which together make up a group known as the Forces for Freedom and Change, said they did not attend the meeting.