UN envoy denounces Sudan violence after 2 killed in protests

UN envoy denounces Sudan violence after 2 killed in protests
Two young protestors were killed on Saturday by Sudanese security forces, drawing condemnation from the UN.
2 min read
29 May, 2022
Sudanese security forces intervene with tear gas to disperse demonstrators on May 26. [Mahmoud Hjaj/Anadolu Agency via Getty]

The UN envoy for Sudan denounced on Sunday the killing of two Sudanese protestors taking part in peaceful protests on Saturday against the October 2021 military coup.

“I am appalled by the violent death of two young protesters in Khartoum yesterday," Volker Perthes, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Sudan, wrote on Twitter. "One again: it is time for the violence to stop, time to end the state of emergency, time for a peaceful way out of the current crisis in Sudan."

One of the protestors was shot and killed by security forces and the other suffocated after inhaling tear gas, according to the Sudan Doctors Committee, which is part of the pro-democracy movement.

Hundreds of demonstrators marched across the capital Khartoum on Saturday and in the cities of Bahri and Omdurman, and blockaded several streets, calling for the restoration of civilian rule. Security forces violently dispersed the crowds and used tear gas against demonstrators, activists reported. 

Saturday's protests are part of seven months of relentless demonstration calling for the military to hand over power to civilians. At least 98 people have been killed and over 4,300 wounded since this movement began, according to the Sudan Doctors Committee.

Sudan's transitional process began in April 2019, when former strongman Omar al-Bashir and his Islamist-backed government were removed by the military following a popular uprising. The army and civilian leaders of the revolution initially agreed to share power and organise democratic elections by 2023, but on October 25, 2021, the military took power and interrupted the transition process.

Subsequent protests held across the country eventually led to a deal that reinstated Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok, who eventually resigned in January saying he could not work with the military. 

Sudan has been plunged into turmoil ever since. Protesters demand the removal of the military from power, but the generals refuse to hand over power before the elections - due to take place in July 2023.