Since June 16, protests have shaken Khartoum and other areas in Sudan. The immediate trigger for the protests was the government’s announcement of new austerity measures. These measures aim to plug a budgetary deficit that largely stems from Sudan’s loss of South Sudan and its oil. As protests have continued, they have tapped into longer-term grievances against the regime of President Omar al Bashir and his National Congress Party (NCP). Bashir has been in power since 1989, most recently winning re-election in 2010. Some commentators and activists view the protests as the “beginning of the end” for Bashir; others have pointed out that earlier protest movements failed to take root, suggesting that this one, too, will falter. I am more in the latter camp for now, but the longer the protests continue the more of a danger they become to Bashir, who must now keep an eye not only on the streets but also on other factions of the Sudanese elite.
On Twitter, you can keep up to date on the protests by following the hashtag #SudanRevolts, as well as users Moez Ali, Amir Ahmad Nasr, James Copnall, Bec Hamilton, Martin Plaut, Alun McDonald, Mimz, Daniel Solomon, and many others.
- Human Rights Watch: “Sudan should end the crackdown on peaceful protesters, release people who have been detained, and allow journalists to report freely on the events.”
- US State Department: “The United States condemns the numerous arrests and detentions that have been taking place over the past week in Sudan in response to peaceful demonstrations. There have been reports of protestors being beaten, imprisoned, and severely mistreated while in government custody. We call for the immediate release of those detained for peaceful protest.”
- UK Foreign Office: “These demonstrations underline once again the importance of the Government of Sudan embarking on a process of reform that addresses the needs and aspirations of all Sudanese citizens within an open and democratic framework.”
Statements by Sudanese government officials:
- Al Jazeera: “Bashir Says Sudan Protests Are No Arab Spring”
- Reuters: “Sudan Says No Retreat on Cuts Despite Protests”
- Sudan Tribune: “Bashir Sacks Aides as Regional Governments Resign Except South Darfur”
- Radio Dabanga: “Dormitories of Protesting Students Set Ablaze by Sudan Security Agents”
- AFP: “Bloomberg Reporter Deported from Sudan”
- Sudan Tribune: “Opposition Party Rejects Ban on Political Meetings”
- CNN: “Police Crackdown on Growing Protests”
- Carol Jean Gallo: “Why Sudanese Are Protesting in the Streets”
- Amir Ahmad Nasir: “Sudan Needs a Revolution”
- Moez Ali: “A New Sudan in the Making”
- Al Jazeera: “Has Springtime Finally Arrived in Sudan?”
- Global Voices: “Unshackling the Sudanese Revolution”
What is your view of the protests? Do you think Bashir will fall?