KHARTOUM (Reuters) – Sudanese protesters marching against military rule on International Women’s Day were met with tear gas as they approached the presidential palace on Tuesday, a Reuters reporter said.
Women’s rights groups had called the protest along with neighbourhood resistance committees that have been organising street demonstrations since the military took power in October.
The coup put an end to a power-sharing arrangement between civilians and the military that was struck after former President Omar al-Bashir who ruled for 30 years was toppled in a 2019 uprising in which women played a prominent role.
“Women’s demands are the revolution’s demands,” said one protest banner. After the rally reached the presidential palace in the capital Khartoum, security forces chased protesters back into nearby streets.
The protest comes as Sudan faces economic free-fall. On Tuesday, the Sudanese pound was devalued by about 19% after its price had slid on the black market.
The coup has also resulted in the reversal of decisions made since Bashir’s fall, and a crackdown in which political figures have been arrested and dozens of protesters killed.
On Tuesday, politician Babiker Faisal became the latest prominent former member of a committee tasked with dismantling Bashir’s regime to be detained, his party said in a statement.
In recent weeks, courts have reversed the committee’s firings of dozens of bureaucrats in the central bank, foreign ministry, and other entities.
Sudan’s ruling council said on Monday that holds placed on some accounts by the committee would be lifted, while other decisions affecting more than 1,500 individuals and companies would be upheld while under review.
In a further sign of rolling back work done under the power-sharing government, the head of a committee investigating the lethal dispersal of a sit-in in June 2019 said he had suspended its work after security forces took over its offices.
(Reporting by Khalid Abdelaziz, writing by Nafisa Eltahir; editing by Aidan Lewis and Aurora Ellis)