Sudan releases dozens arrested over bread protests

Sudan Protests [File-Photo]
Sudan has seen a wave of unrest over soaring living costs. Image courtesy: TesfaNews

Activists say Sudanese authorities have released dozens of people arrested for taking part in last month’s protests against rising bread prices.

The move was ordered on Sunday by President Omar al-Bashir, his aide said.

Two protesters, Imtenan Ali el-Radi and Amal Habany, say they were released Tuesday from Kober prison, north of the capital, Khartoum. They say several families were waiting for their loved ones in front of the prison.

Protests erupted in Khartoum and other parts of the country last month after the government slashed subsidies and devalued the local currency, measures aimed at strengthening the battered economy. Hundreds of people were detained.

According to media reports, among those released were several high-ranking members of the National Umma Party – one of the most prominent opposition parties in Sudan – including the movement’s vice president and secretary-general. Amal Habani, a women’s rights defender, was also freed.


The development comes several days after the American embassy in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, said it was “deeply concerned” by the arrest campaign against “hundreds of political leaders, activists and ordinary citizens, many of whom are being held in inhumane and degrading conditions, and without access to lawyers or family”.

The country witnessed widespread demonstrations, called “bread protests”, at the start of 2018, when the government decided to cut subsidies and stop importing wheat from overseas.

The opposition says more than 300 people were arrested in the wave of protests. Several people participating in the rallies were killed when the government responded with force.

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