KHARTOUM - Sudan’s ruling military council on Tuesday warned protesters against any further “chaos” as organizers call for mass rallies later this week.
Gen. Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, the deputy head of the military council, said council members “are committed to negotiate, but no chaos after today.” He reiterated the military’s demand that protesters clear roads and railways, saying seven provinces were running low on food, water and fuel.
The military overthrew long-ruling President Omar al-Bashir earlier this month amid four months of mass protests. The protesters have remained in the streets, demanding an immediate transfer to civilian rule and calling for mass rallies on Thursday.
Opposition leaders in Sudan are discussing who will sit on a joint civilian-military council expected to run the country for the next two years.
The two sides are negotiating the formation of a new transitional government but are divided over the role of the military, which is dominated by al-Bashir appointees.
Dagalo said at least 12 security forces have been killed in clashes with protesters across the country since al-Bashir’s April 11 ouster, without providing further details.
Sudan’s military rulers and opposition agreed in principle Saturday to the formation of a joint body to lead a transition from 30 years of autocratic rule by Omar al-Bashir, but not on the new council’s makeup, two sources said.
The two sides were holding their first formal discussions as opposition groups and protesters push for a rapid handover to civilian rule following Bashir’s fall earlier this month.
Sudan’s Transitional Military Council (TMC), which ousted and arrested Bashir after months of protests, has said it will rule for up to two years ahead of elections.
The protesters at the main sit-in outside the military headquarters in Khartoum remained defiant, accusing the military leadership of trying to preserve al-Bashir’s regime.
“Our message is clear: all these people won’t go back for any reason,” said Mohammed Adam, one of the protesters. “We are ready to die, because this is a message to the previous regime. We want to build a new country.”
Another protester, Muhanad Ali Jumaa, said the sit-ins must continue if the revolution is to succeed.
“For a revolution, if you don’t block the roads then we won’t be putting pressure on these people,” he said.