U.S. suspends talks with Sudan after military ousts Bashir

Moussa Faki

Demonstrators who have been holding nearly daily anti-Bashir protests have rejected the decision to set up a transitional military council and vowed to continue protests until a civilian government is established.

Sudan's newly appointed military council said on Friday that deposed President Omar al-Bashir will not be handed over to other countries under its watch, but will be tried at home.

Zein Abedeen, who is on the military transitional council which took over after overthrowing al-Bashir on Thursday, also insisted the army has no ambition to hold the reins of power for long.

Abideen pledged that the military council would not interfere with a civilian government.

The Sudan Professionals Association (SPA), which has been a main force behind 16 weeks of anti-Bashir protests, called on protesters to continue their demonstrations after the army originally announced that there would be two years of military rule before presidential elections.

The news site reported that the recent stand-off has raised fears of a violent confrontation between protesters and the army. Omar al-Bashir is wanted for some of the most odious human rights violations of our generation, and we need to finally see him held accountable.

Washington calls "on transitional authorities to exercise restraint and to allow space for civilian participation within the government", State Department spokesman Robert Palladino told reporters.

Ibn Auf was sanctioned by the U.S. for supporting the Janjaweed militia responsible for much of the violence against civilians, including directing attacks.

Sudan's military ousted al-Bashir on Thursday in response to escalating popular protests.

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"The three-month state of emergency is a clear indication that they intend to crush the uprising in this time", he said of the Sudanese military.

On Thursday, Ahmed Ibn Auf announced the establishment of a military council that would govern the country for two years.

Following Defence Minister Awad Bin Ouf's TV appearance, officially announcing the overthrow of the previous government, tens of thousands of frustrated Sudanese labelled the military coup a hoax, saying that the same faces they are opposed to are in the security committee.

Mr Bashir has been indicted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity over that conflict.

Al-Bashir came to power on the back of a 1989 military coup against the democratically-elected government of Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi.

Footage shared on social media on Friday claimed to show NISS forces firing on protesters in North Kordofan, in central Sudan.

He said the military council had no solutions to Sudan's crisis and these would come from the protesters. Mohammed Hamadati, the commander, said talks are needed so Sudan would "avoid slipping into chaos".

However, he may be put on trial inside Sudan, according to the military council.

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