Sudan Demos in Support of Women Detainees

Khartoum / El Obeid / Kassala / Wad Madani — Thousands of Sudanese took to the streets again in Omdurman on Sunday in protest against the detention of hundreds of women demonstrators, in a march called for by the Sudanese Professionals Association and other signatories to the Declaration of Freedom and Change. In other parts of Khartoum state, demonstrations against the government of President Omar Al Bashir continued as well. Doctors and teachers organised sit-ins in various parts of Sudan.

Despite the mass presence of security forces in central Omdurman, hundreds of protesters, among them many women, marched towards the Omdurman Women Prison, shouting: "Azza, your honour can never be trampled".

"The security forces turned the centre of Omdurman into military barracks," one of the demonstrators told Radio Dabanga. They responded to the demonstrations "with excessive violence", using live ammunition, tear gas, batons and electric wires to disperse the protesters, causing many casualties.

When protesters took refuge in the emergency section of the nearby Bugaa Hospital, security agents and riot police chased them inside the building, using tear gas which led to the breathing problems among the patients and the medical staff.

Dozens of demonstrators were detained in in Omdurman, among them journalist Durra Gambo when she was covering the protest march to the women prison.

In Khartoum, agents of the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) detained prominent lawyer Yahya El Hussein from his office in the centre of the city, and Fathi Nouri, Dr Salah Awad and Abdallah Saleh from the office of El Baath newspaper, the mouthpiece of the opposition El Baath party. The newspaper's print-run of Sunday was confiscated at the printing press.

Vigils

Large street protests were also witnessed in various districts in Khartoum state, in El Deim, Arkaweet, El Shajara, El Hamadab, El Abbasiya, Wad Nubawi, Beit El Mal, El Mulazimin, El Sawra, El Amara, and El Sheikh Hajo.

Several other Sudanese states also witnessed peaceful demonstrations "against the Khartoum regime", in conjunction with the Omdurman march in support of the women detainees. In addition, doctors, pharmacists, and teachers held a number of vigils.

A number of teachers protested in front of the Kassala state Ministry of Education in eastern Sudan. In Wad Madani, capital of El Gezira in central Sudan, members of the state's Pharmacists Committee took to the streets demanding "the overthrow of the regime".

In El Obeid, capital of North Kordofan, dozens of interns, GPs and specialists working in El Obeid Teaching Hospital, carried out a vigil in the hospital campus, denouncing government policies.

Witnesses told this station that the doctors raised signs protesting the excessive violence used against peaceful demonstrators, and calling for freedom of expression, and a better work environment. Security forces cordoned off the hospital until the end of the vigil.

In Khartoum, medical staff of the Khartoum Teaching Hospital held a sit-in inside the hospital expressing their support of the nationwide revolt. Participants reported to Radio Dabanga that NISS officers detained medics Ashraf El Mutasim, Hadi Abdelrahim, Walid Fadlallah, El Tuhami Seif and Amin El Tayeb.

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