Sudan is facing a full military coup, the information ministry said on Monday, urging the immediate release of all detainees.
The Sudanese people should try to stop the military’s efforts to block democratic transition, it added in a statement to Reuters. “We invite everyone to continue the march until the coup attempt is brought down,” it said.
Sudan’s Prime Minster Abdalla Hamdok was moved to an unknown location after refusing to issue a statement in support of an ongoing military coup, the information ministry said earlier on Monday.
Joint military forces holding Hamdok under house arrest were pressuring him to issue a supportive statement, the information ministry said.
Hamdok was put under house arrest after an unidentified military force besieged his house early on Monday, Al Arabiya sister channel Al Hadath reported on Monday citing unidentified sources.
Most of the members of the country’s cabinet and a large number of pro-government party leaders were arrested in an apparent coup in the capital Khartoum, three political sources said.
Joint military forces stormed the radio and television headquarters in the city of Omdurman and arrested staff, the information ministry said.
Sudanese military and paramilitary forces deployed across the capital Khartoum, restricting civilians’ movements, as protesters carrying the national flag burnt tires in different areas of the city, a Reuters witness reported.
Khartoum airport was shut and international flights were suspended, according to Al Arabiya.
There was no immediate comment from the military. Sudanese state TV broadcast as normal.
The head of the Sudan Sovereign Council was expected to give a statement about the developments, Al Hadath reported.
Reuters witnesses said internet services appeared to be down in the capital, Khartoum.
The US Special Envoy said they are deeply alarmed by reports of a military takeover.
The Sudanese Professionals Association called for a general strike and civil disobedience in the face of a “military coup,” according to a statement.
Sudan has been on edge since a failed coup plot last month unleashed bitter recriminations between military and civilian groups meant to be sharing power following the 2019 ouster of former leader Omar al-Bashir.
Bashir was toppled and jailed after months of street protests. A political transition agreed after his ouster was meant to lead to elections by the end of 2023.
As tensions built this month, a coalition of rebel groups and political parties aligned themselves with the military. Supporters of the military have been staging a sit-in outside the presidential palace calling on the military to dissolve the civilian government.
Last week, several cabinet ministers took part in big protests in several parts of the Khartoum and other cities against the prospect of military rule.
The military head of the Sovereign Council has previously asserted his commitment to the transition.
The United Nations expressed its deep concern about reports of the ongoing coup in Sudan on Monday, and attempts to undermine its political transition, said Volker Perthes, the special representative of the UN secretary general for the country.