Call for civilian government as military removes Bashir

KHARTOUM: Opposition groups in Sudan rejected the military’s takeover of the government and called for continued protests on Thursday, hours after President Omar al Bashir was removed and arrested.
“We reject the statement of this regime’s detractors,” the umbrella opposition group Declaration of Freedom and Change said in a statement. The coup and installation of a military transitional council did not represent change, the group said, speaking on behalf of the Sudanese Professionals Association and other opposition outfits that played a key role in staging ongoing anti-government protests.
“(We) call on our great people to maintain their courageous sit-in in front of the army headquarters and the rest of the regions to stay on the streets in all the cities of Sudan,” the statement said.
The statement came in reaction to an announcement from Awad Ibn Auf, the defence minister and vice-president, that the military had ousted Bashir following months of nationwide street protests.
Bashir, who was in power for 30 years, has been brought to “a safe place,” Ibn Auf said in an address to the nation. The minister declared the formation of a military council for a two-year transitional period, the cancellation of the constitution and a three-month state of emergency.
All of the East African government’s institutions, including the two chambers of parliament, have been dissolved, Ibn Auf said. He added that Sudan’s judiciary and public prosecution would continue to function and that the country would soon prepare for “free and fair” elections.
“The Sudanese people suffered so much under the regime… where the regime failed to achieve any solution,” the minister added.
The military had closed
Sudan’s airspace and the nation’s borders for 24 hours and imposed a month-long curfew from 10 pm to 4 am, Ibn Auf said.