Khartoum streets deserted as defiant protesters continue general strike

FILE - In this April 28, 2019, file photo, protesters chant against military rule and demand the prosecution of former officials, at the Armed Forces Square, in Khartoum, Sudan. The Sudanese protesters who succeeded in driving President Omar al-Bashir from power last month say their revolution won’t be complete until they have dismantled what many describe as an Islamist-dominated “deep state” that underpinned his 30-year rule. (AP Photo/Salih Basheer, File)

FILE – In this April 28, 2019, file photo, protesters chant against military rule and demand the prosecution of former officials, at the Armed Forces Square, in Khartoum, Sudan. The Sudanese protesters who succeeded in driving President Omar al-Bashir from power last month say their revolution won’t be complete until they have dismantled what many describe as an Islamist-dominated “deep state” that underpinned his 30-year rule. (AP Photo/Salih Basheer, File)

The streets of the Sudanese capital Khartoum are eerily quiet and deserted as a general strike called by defiant opposition protesters on Sunday to force the military to hand over power to a civilian authority entered its second day on Monday. Four protesters were reportedly killed during the first day of the strike on Sunday.

The silence contrasts with the bloodshed, violence and mayhem of last week when over a 100 people were killed by the notorious paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) when they attacked a protest sit-in outside military headquarters in Khartoum.

The strike, which was declared on June 3 following the attack, has seen activists step up their campaign on social media, calling for mass mobilisation and civil disobedience by all vital institutions in Sudan, the Sudan Tribune reported.

Due to the continued blocking of the internet by the Sudanese authorities, on Saturday the Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA), which spearheads the protests, sent thousands of text messages outlining the guidelines for escalating peaceful confrontation through disobedience.

By Sunday 900,000 text messages had been sent and the message was simple. “Tasgot Bas”, which in Arabic translates to “just fall, that’s all”.

A continuing general strike could significantly paralyse the country.

Meanwhile, the RSF are deploying at street intersections in the capital as army forces patrol the streets of twin city Omdurman. Police and security personnel are deployed in Khartoum North.

– African News Agency

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