- Sudanese youth build barricades at the sit-in square outside the army headquarters in Khartoum on 29 April 2019 (ST photo)
May 14, 2019 (KHARTOUM) – The forces of the Declaration of Freedom and Change called for an urgent investigation into Monday’s attacks in the vicinity of the sit-in in Khartoum that led to the death of five demonstrators and one army officer.
In the early hours of Tuesday, Sudanese army commanders accused infiltrators of firing from the top of the Blue Nile Bridge in the direction of forces that were working to remove the roadblocks in order to open the roads closed by the protesters in the Nile and the University streets in Khartoum.
In a press conference held on the same day in the afternoon, the Freedom of Change forces stressed the need to establish an urgent committee to investigate the attacks and identify the culprits who perpetrated this “ugly crime”.
Babikir Faisal, an opposition spokesperson said the military council bears the responsibility for the attacks because they are the body entrusted with maintaining security in the sit-in area and others.
He noted that the slackness and procrastination the military junta showed in its dealing with the transfer of power to a civilian entity was also a reason for the development of these events.
He added that the attempt of the army leaders to hold the demonstrators responsible and accusing them of provoking the armed forces are not acceptable pointing to the peacefulness of the protest movement during the past five months.
“No matter the provocation the army commanders are talking about, the ripost should not be to shoot protesters, kill them and shed blood,” he said.
“The responsibilities must be defined and the perpetrators must be punished.”
Mohamed Nagi al-Asam, another spokesperson for the forces of Freedom and Change said that talking about “infiltrators” among the protesters as it was repeated by the former regime “is no longer acceptable”.
He pointed out that the Council initiated the escalation when its forces began to deal with the protesters and brought bulldozers to remove the barricades.
He explained that the number of injured peoples exceeded 200 cases, including 10 in a critical situation, and stressed that the military junta bears the full responsibility of the attacks.
The third opposition spokesperson Khalid Omer said that the eyewitnesses say the Rapid Support Forces were involved in the attacks on peaceful protesters.
He added that the military council, which denied the allegation, has to disclose the identity of those who use vehicles and the uniform of the Rapid Support Forces to attack the demonstrators.
“We demand the formation of an immediate committee and the removal of regular forces from the perimeter of the sit-in.”