The situation in Sudan deteriorated after security forces arrested the prime minister and other ministers and members of the Sovereignty Council, which made up the country’s civilian government, on October 25. The army fired in the air to disperse the mass of demonstrators who took to the streets to denounce the “coup”, injuring several people, according to residents’ testimony.
Unidentified gunmen arrested several Sudanese leaders early on October 25, a government source told AFP. The internet has also been cut across the country, Sudanese residents confirmed to us over the phone.
General Abdel Fattah al-Burhane, head of Sudan’s transitional authorities, announced the dissolution of the government and the Sovereignty Council, and declared a state of emergency.
اص حي شارع المطار. pic.twitter.com/hfTgG2nKqY
– مؤمِن (@ mo2mein) October 25, 2021 At the start of this video, gunshots are heard. “A live bullet on the road to the airport on October 25,” shouts a protester. In the morning, after learning of the arrest of Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok, the demonstrators took to the streets of Khartoum and Omdurman. They chanted “No turning back”, a slogan reminiscent of the days of the dictatorship of Omar al-Bashir, overthrown on April 11, 2019 after four months of widespread protests.
Security forces used live ammunition to disperse protesters trying to reach army headquarters. Protesters burned tires in the streets, as videos posted on social media show, despite severe internet disruption.
At least three people were shot dead during the crackdown, according to the Sudanese Central Medical Committee, and more than 80 were injured.
By midday, the army – with the help of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) – had cordoned off bridges and main roads in Khartoum to prevent protesters from reaching army headquarters. The video below shows security forces stationed outside a gas station, with smoke rising in the distance and protesters chanting: “The army belongs to Sudan, the army does not belong to Burhan”.
️ الان امام محطة النحلة للبترول تواجد امني واغلاق الطرق المؤدية للقيادة العامة “دعم – جيش – ات كفاحJسلحة” pic.twitter8.com
– طــه ود حنان (@ 6a7a_hussein) October 25, 2021 This video shows security forces stationed in front of a gas station, smoke rising in the distance and protesters chanting: “The army belongs to Sudan, the army does not ‘not owned by Burhan’. “It was the saddest thing to see: Sudanese people clash two years after the revolution” Fatma (not her real name) is a journalist in Khartoum.
I live in the area around Khartoum airport. I did not dare to go out today. From the window I can see the smoke from the burning tires. I hear automatic weapon fire and stun grenades coming from army headquarters.
This morning, demonstrators crossed the bridge leading to the army headquarters, and the army fired in the air to disperse them, injuring several people.
There were also brief exchanges of projectiles between protesters supporting the revolution and pro-army protesters. [Editor’s note: supported by the governor of Darfur, Minni Minawi, and Finance Minister Gibril Ibrahim, both of whom represent armed groups and have called for the current government to be dissolved]. It was the saddest thing to see: the Sudanese clash two years after the revolution.
There was an atmosphere of fear this morning. Schools texted parents saying they could not allow students in class today for security reasons.
Journalists are now very afraid after the arrest of some civil society leaders. There were warning signs of this coup, and restrictions on journalists’ freedoms came long before today.
This video shows members of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) hitting passers-by with sticks on the outskirts of the protests, as gunshots ring out.
Pro-military protesters, who have been campaigning outside the presidential palace since October 6, have prevented journalists from filming their sit-in, sometimes by force. They even blocked international media like the BBC.
It has been two weeks since the intelligence agency banned the travel of several political figures from civil society, including a member of the Security Council, Mohammed al-Fakki Sueima, and a collaborator of Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok.
Industry Minister Ibrahim al-Sheikh was arrested at his home in the middle of the night in a humiliating manner. He tweeted just before his arrest, saying “Soldiers are storming my house.” Images of his arrest have been posted on social media.
Most stores are closed, main roads have been closed by the military, and the Internet has been cut. In Sudan, many things need the internet: making a doctor’s appointment, ordering a taxi, shopping. The country is at a standstill, but the Sudanese people have not given up. They took to the streets in droves to protest against President Abdel Fattah al-Burhan’s announcement to dissolve parliament in the early afternoon.
We are heading into the unknown, but we will not surrender. We will never let them take our revolution.
Mohammed al-Assam, one of the leaders of the Association of Professionals of Sudan, a leading figure in the December 2019 revolution, joined the anti-coup protesters, as shown in this video shared on social media .
ناجي الاصمالزمان اليومالتوقيت لومالمكان الخرطوم pic.twitter.com/OFwQ7sAQXv
– شيخ الدمازين 🕌 (@shekaldmazeen) October 25, 2021 “They want to drag the country into violence and chaos. But no one will resort to violence. Our revolution is peaceful and will remain so,” says Mohammed al-Assam in this video. The political crisis in Sudan comes amid a severe economic crisis. The country is heavily in debt and the daily life of the Sudanese people is riddled with gas, electricity and fuel shortages.