Sudan protest leaders say meeting with military rulers ‘positive’

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Sudan protest leaders said that their meeting with the Transitional Military Council on Saturday was “positive.”

“Today we have taken positive steps and we expect to reach an agreement satisfactory to all parties,” said Ayman Nimir, a negotiator for the Alliance for Freedom and Change, Reuters reported.

“We expect to receive a response from the military council regarding the formation of a sovereign council within hours.”

Earlier, the joint committee representing Sudan’s military leadership and the Alliance for Freedom and Change, which brings together grassroots organizers with opposition and rebel groups, held its first meeting to discuss their demand for civilian rule.

Protest leaders have held several rounds of so far inconclusive talks with the ruling military council since the army toppled veteran president Omar al-Bashir on April 11 following four months of nationwide protests.

Earlier this week, the two sides agreed to set up a joint committee to chart the way forward.

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Screengrab of the meeting between Sudan Transitional Military Council and protest leaders on Saturday April 27, 2019. (Screengrab)
Screengrab of the meeting between Sudan Transitional Military Council and protest leaders on Saturday April 27, 2019. (Screengrab)

The Alliance for Freedom and Change has kept up mass protests for a return to civilian rule since Bashir’s overthrow after three decades in power.

“The joint committee with the transitional military council will hold its first meeting today, Saturday,” the AFC said earlier in a statement.

It gave no details of who would be representing it on the panel.

The military council has so far refused to step down, insisting that it has assumed power for a two-year transitional period.

ALSO READ: Sudan’s ruling military council will retain ‘sovereign authority’

But on Friday, it said it was in “continuous communication” with the protest movement and was waiting for it to choose delegates to the new joint panel, according to AFP.

The protesters have kept up the pressure on the military, continuing their round-the-clock sit-in outside army headquarters and mobilising tens of thousands on Thursday for a “million-strong” march for civilian rule.

Western governments have expressed support, but Sudan’s key Gulf Arab lenders have backed the military council, while African states have called for more time for the army to hand over to civilians.

(With Agencies)

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