Sudan: Police fire tear gas as thousands protest military rule
Police fired tear gas at protesters in Sudan as thousands took to the streets to commemorate the beginning of sit-ins that eventually saw the removal of former ruler Omar al-Bashir in 2019.
Demonstrators called for a return to civilian rule in the wake of a 25 October military coup led by army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan that has plunged the country's democratic transition into chaos.
'We just want to bring down the coup and end the prospect of any future coups'
- Badwi Bashir, protestor
The independent Central Committee of Sudan Doctors said security services had "stormed Al-Jawda hospital and fired tear gas inside, scaring patients and health workers and causing suffocation among some of them".
Protests took place in the capital Khartoum and in other cities across the country, including a number of locations in the restive regions of Darfur and North Kordofan, as well as the Red Sea city of Port Sudan and Wad Madani to the south of the capital.
Chants of "No to military rule" and "Away with the government of hunger" could be heard from the protesters.
6 April also marks the day in 1985 when another former ruler, president Jaafar Nimeiri, was driven from office by popular protests.
"It is an important day... so we expect many to take to the streets despite the heat and Ramadan," said one Khartoum protester, Badwi Bashir, speaking to AFP
"We just want to bring down the coup and end the prospect of any future coups."
Sudan has had tens of billions of dollars of debt relief and an aid programme frozen by the World Bank, the United States and other western governments in response to the 25 October coup.
The US has also recently sanctioned Sudan’s Central Reserve Police for "serious human rights abuses committed during protests calling for democracy".
Russia's invasion of Ukraine has also contributed to an increasingly dire economic situation, with the Sudanese pound plummeting against the dollar as prices of food, fuel and basic commodities soar.
Both Russia and Ukraine are major exporters of wheat to African countries.