(AFP) – Hundreds of Sudanese took to the streets of the capital Sunday for a mass protest against the country’s ruling generals, amid international calls for restraint to prevent a new crackdown on demonstrators.
The planned “million-man” march is seen as a test for protest organisers whose movement has been hit by a deadly June 3 raid on a Khartoum sit-in and a subsequent internet blackout that has curbed their ability to mobilise support.
Dozens of demonstrators were killed and hundreds wounded when armed men in military fatigues stormed the sit-in outside army headquarters, shooting and beating protesters who had camped there since April 6.
The new protest comes at a time when Ethiopia and the African Union (AU) are jointly mediating between the protesters and generals.
The European Union, several Western nations and rights groups have called on the generals to avoid any violence.
Inside Sudan’s Internet ban, brutal clampdown on protesters, and sexual violence
Hundreds of men and women, flashing victory signs and carrying Sudanese flags, flooded the streets of Al-Sahafa neighbourhood of Khartoum, chanting “civilian rule, civilian rule,” an AFP correspondent reported.