Sudanese democracy activists urge West not to fund coup government

Sudanese democracy activists urge West not to fund coup government
Pro-democracy activists in Sudan have urged the US and other western nations not to resume the delivery of aid to Sudan and provide legitimacy to the coup leaders.
2 min read
13 December, 2021
Protester have rejected the deal that saw Hamdok reinstated [Getty]

Sudanese pro-democracy activists are urging world powers not to resume the flow of development aid to the Sudanese government, and provide legitimacy to the leaders of the military coup

It has been speculated that aid will resume to Sudan following the release and reinstatement of Sudan Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok on 22 November. 

"In the interest of the people and of the protesters, the global community must not support this government in any way," Zuhair Al-Dalee, a representative from a pro-democracy resistance committee in Khartoum told Al-Jazeera

Following the 25 October military coup in Sudan, led by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, a number of world powers suspended aid payments to the Sudanese government, most notably the US, who suspended $700 million in aid. 

"The civilian-led transitional government should be immediately restored and represents the will of the people," US State Department spokesman Ned Price said. 

Pro-democracy activists fear that despite the reinstatement of Hamdok any money that might be provided by foreign powers would be used to support the military coup and not the country's transition to democracy. 

"Any aid that comes to this government will just support the coup. It won’t benefit the people," Dalee said.

As well as the freeze in US aid, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund have frozen a further $650 million in international funding. 

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Without foreign aid it is feared that Sudanese economy will face greater strains, increasing the chances that the government will be unable to secure essential items, such as food and medicine. 

It has been suggested that Western government set out a timetable of objectives for the Sudanese government to meet, as part of their transition to democracy. These would include holding of general elections and the convening of a new constitutional assembly, and that aid is slowly released, depending on the success of these goals. 

“These things all had a timetable set by the 2019 transition agreement. All these things are now late,” Yezid Sayigh, a senior fellow at the Malcolm H. Kerr Carnegie Middle East Center, told The New Arab Voice.

“Western governments should set a timetable and hold the military to it and say, with every step, we will open up more assistance and credit lines. And with every delay, we will close one down. So these things can be done in a way that offers both carrots and sticks,” he added.