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Sudan’s anti-coup protests violently dispersed; two killed

AP – Sudanese security forces fired live ammunition and tear gas to disperse protesters in the capital of Khartoum as thousands took to the streets on Thursday against a coup that has plunged the country into grinding deadlock, activists said.

A senior police officer and a protester were killed, according to authorities and a medical group.

The demonstrations in Khartoum and elsewhere in Sudan are the latest in relentless protests since the military on October 25 ousted the civilian-led government of Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok.

The military takeover has upended Sudan’s transition to democratic rule after three decades of repression and international isolation under autocratic President Omar al-Bashir.

The African nation has been on a fragile path to democracy since a popular uprising forced the military to remove al-Bashir and his extremist government in April 2019.

Demonstrators, mostly young people, marched in different locations in Khartoum and its twin city of Omdurman, according to footage circulated online. Security was tight. There were also protests in the restive western region of Darfur.The protesters demanded the removal of generals from power and the establishment of a fully civilian government to lead the transition.

Security forces used tear gas to disperse those marching in a main Khartoum street leading to the fortified presidential palace, according to the pro-democracy movement.

Online videos show white smoke – apparently from tear gas – as protesters try to take cover and others hurl stones at the troops.

The police said a senior officer was killed while providing security to the protest close to the presidential palace. The statement did not say how Colonel Ali Hamad was killed, but local media reported that he was stabbed to death as security forces were dispersing the protesters.

People gather during a protest in Khartoum, Sudan. PHOTO: AP
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