Sudan orders release of protesters arrested during ongoing protests

FILE PHOTO: Sudanese demonstrators run from teargas lobbed to disperse them as they march along the street during anti-government protests in Khartoum, Sudan December 25, 2018. REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah/File Photo

Authorities in Sudan have ordered the release of all detainees held during weeks of anti-government protests.

The release was ordered by Sudan’s intelligence and security chief, Salah Ghosh, the information ministry said in a statement. No reason was given.

More than 1,000 people are reported to have been detained in the protests, which began in December.

The demonstrations started over cuts to bread and fuel subsidies, but later developed into anger at the president’s 30-year rule.

According to Rights groups more than 40 people have been killed in clashes with security forces.

“The chief of the National Intelligence and Security Service issued an order to release all detainees held in the ongoing incidents,” Tuesday’s statement said.

This even as riot police in the capital Khartoum used tear gas to disperse dozens of demonstrators in the Burri district on Tuesday, witnesses said.

Cognisant of the problems facing the country,President Omar al-Bashir blames the unrest on “foreign agents” and rebel groups in the Darfur region, as well as exaggeration by the media