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In Khartoum, thousands of Sudanese on streets again to protest coup

Sudanese protesters march in Khartoum against the 2021 military coup, November 17, 2022. (Photo by AFP)

Thousands of Sudanese demonstrators have once again taken to the streets, calling for justice for scores of people killed since last year's military coup by the army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan.

Thursday's protests, which drew the largest crowds onto the streets in northern Khartoum, mark one year since November 17, 2021, when 15 people were killed. It was the deadliest single-day crackdown on anti-coup demonstrations.

"The martyr's blood did not go in vain," demonstrators chanted, while others called for the military to "go back to the barracks."

Sudan has been embroiled in unrest since October 2021, when Burhan led the military takeover that derailed the country's transition to civilian rule.

Near-weekly anti-coup protests have been met with a violent crackdown that has so far left well over 100 people dead, according to pro-democracy medical sources.

Ongoing talks between the Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) and the military, which have lasted for weeks, are part of the latest efforts to break the political stalemate. The two sides recently welcomed a transitional constitution developed by the Sudanese Bar Association as a basis for a lasting agreement.

On November 13, Burhan, during a visit to a military base west of Khartoum, said the military was presented with a "document" on the political process. "We noted down observations to preserve the army's dignity, unity and independence." He also warned political factions against "interference" in the armed forces' activities, saying, "We consider anyone who tries to interfere in the army an enemy."

The junta, led by Burhan, seized power in 2021, after detaining Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and other civilian leaders and dissolving the year-old transitional government as well as the joint ruling military-civilian sovereign council formed after the 2019 ouster of longtime ruler Omar al-Bashir.

Protesters want an end to the military rule by Burhan.

Sudan, which is home to one of the world's poorest nations, has been reeling from a weak economy. The country, with a population of about 45 million people, is currently witnessing skyrocketing inflation due to decades of international isolation and mismanagement.

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