Sudan talks over coup hit ‘semi-deadlock’, sources from ousted government say

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Talks to resolve Sudan's political crisis after last month's coup have hit “semi-deadlock” because the military has refused to return to a path of democratic transition, two sources from the ousted government said on Saturday.

The sources told Reuters the military had tightened restrictions on ousted Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, who was placed under house arrest during the Oct. 25 takeover when his government was dissolved.

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The new restrictions further limited his ability to hold meetings or make political contacts, they added.

Sudan's military chief, Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, has said the army intervened because of political turmoil and the risk of civil war. He says the military remains committed to the transition and to elections to be held in 2023.

Mediation efforts involving the United Nations have been seeking to find a way for Hamdok to be brought back as prime minister of a purely technocratic government.

Hamdok has demanded preconditions that include the release of top civilians detained during the coup and a return to a transition towards democracy that began after the overthrow of long-term autocrat Omar al-Bashir in 2019.

Pro-democracy groups are trying to reverse the coup with a series of mass rallies and neighborhood demonstrations. Many reject any role for the military and call for full civilian rule.

Critics of Burhan accuse the army of fomenting unrest before the military takeover, which they say made the risk of civil conflict more likely and derailed a transition that offered an opportunity of Sudan to exit from decades of isolation and internal wars.

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