Home Politics Sudanese businesses remain closed as strike enters third day

Sudanese businesses remain closed as strike enters third day

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Sudanese protesters use burning tyres to erect a barricade on a street Photograph: STRINGER

A nationwide civil disobedience campaign aimed at putting pressure on military rulers entered its third day, forcing residents to remain indoors, while shops and businesses stayed closed for the day in the Sudanese capital.

The protest action started on Sunday after almost a week following the killings by security forces of dozens of people who were holding a sit-in outside the army headquarters in Khartoum to demand civilian rule.  

The second day of the protests saw the internet lines from the main provider Sudatel not working, which left the country in an internet blackout for a couple of hours.

In some parts of the capital buses were used to transport people, but in Khartoum commercial districts and main businesses remained closed.

Several vehicles loaded with machine guns of the Rapid Support Forces, which are paramilitaries accused by witnesses and protectors have largely been behind the crackdown, patrolled the streets of a couple of districts of the city.

A lot less people were spotted on the streets.

Ibrahim Omar, an employee at a tour operator said travel agencies have been hit the hardest due to the internet blackout on Monday; “In the last three days we have lost a lot of money.”

“We cannot do anything. We are not doing any international flight bookings. I hope it does not continue like this,” Omar said.

However, protesters who have been campaigning for civil disobedience say the agitation has been successful so far.

“This shows clearly what we can do, and also in a peaceful way,” said protester Ishraga Mohamed.

“Such a campaign does not lead to killing people and at the same time puts pressure on the military council. We will continue with it until our goal is achieved,” Mohamed added.

The civil disobedience campaign was called after men in military fatigues carried out a brutal crackdown on protesters at the weeks-long sit-in outside the army complex on June 3.

According to doctors linked to the campaign, 118 people have been killed in the overall unrest. The health ministry has indicated that 61 people died nationwide on June 3, including 49 by “live ammunition” in Khartoum.

The generals took power after ousting longtime ruler Omar al-Bashir on April 11, after months-long protests against his iron-fisted, three-decade rule.

Protest leaders have consistently called on the ruling generals to make way for civilian rule.

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