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Sudan security forces fire teargas, arrest dozens of anti-coup protesters

Sudan’s security forces have dispersed demonstrators and rounded up more than 100 people in the capital of Khartoum, in the latest crackdown on pro-democracy protesters after last month’s military coup.

Teachers and education workers protested the coup on Sunday outside the Education Ministry in Khartoum’s district of Bahri, according to the Sudanese Professionals’ Association, which led the uprising against longtime autocrat Omar al Bashir.

Security forces used tear gas to disperse the protesters and arrested at least 113 people, mostly teachers, said lawyer Moez Hadra.

There were sporadic protests elsewhere in Khartoum, he said.

Local authorities announced the resumption of school classes in the capital for the first time since the coup.

Nationwide strikes

Sunday was the first of two days of nationwide strikes called by the SPA, which vowed to continue protesting until a full civilian government is established to lead the transition.

Several shops and businesses in Khartoum were seen open, according to a video journalist with The Associated Press.

The fresh crackdown has also come as mediation efforts between the military and civilian leaders have stumbled, according to a military official with knowledge of the ongoing efforts.

International criticism

The Sudanese military seized power on October 25, dissolving the transitional government and arresting dozens of officials and politicians.

The coup has drawn international criticism and massive protests in the streets of Khartoum and elsewhere in the country.

The takeover has upended the country’s fragile planned transition to democratic rule, more than two years after a popular uprising forced the removal Bashir and his government.

Mediators, including the United Nations envoy in Sudan, were still working to soften the stand of each side, as both are still stick to their pre-conditions before engaging in “meaningful, possibly direct talks,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to brief the media.

The deposed Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, who is still under house arrest in his residence in Khartoum, insists on releasing government officials and politicians detained in connection with the coup.

He also wants “guarantees” that military would return to the pre-coup power-sharing arrangements, the of ficial said.

The military, on the other hand, insists that the October 25 events did not amount to a “coup,” and that it stepped in to “correct the course” of the transitional period, the official said.

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