The United States on Wednesday urged Sudan to release activists detained in a wave of protests and to allow peaceful expression, warning that better ties with Washington were on the line.
The statement was the first by Washington after a month of mushrooming protests in what is widely seen as the biggest threat to President Omar al-Bashir's 30-year rule.
The United States said it was "concerned about the increasing number of arrests and detentions" and urged the government to free "all journalists, activists and peaceful protesters who have been arbitrarily detained."
Meanwhile, Sudan's Information Minister Bishara Jumaa said on Wednesday, in an interview with Arabiya, that the government has "taken steps" to end the economic crisis and that "by March, God willing, matters will be completely resolved".
The minister, however, said that foreign agendas were at play and that non-state actors were exploiting the young protesters.
“Outsiders have agendas and are playing a role in exploiting the protests. Talk about the Sudanese government not moving to improve the situation is simply not true,” he said.