Death toll rises to 60 as Sudanese generals request new talks

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Sudanese protesters walk past burning tyres used to erect a barricade on a street, demanding that the country's Transitional Military Council handover power to civilians, in Khartoum, Sudan June 4, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer
A protester flashes the victory sign in front of burning tires and debris on road 60, near Khartoum’s army headquarters, in Khartoum, Sudan, Monday, June 3, 2019. Sudanese protest leaders say at least 13 people have been killed Monday in the military’s assault on the sit-in outside the military headquarters in the capital, Khartoum. The protesters have announced they are suspending talks with the military regarding the creation of a transitional government. (AP Photo)

Sudan’s military ruler on Wednesday offered to resume a dialogue on a transition to democracy, one day after he scrapped all agreements with an opposition alliance.

The offer by the head of Sudan’s ruling military council, Lieutenant General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, came as the number of people killed since security forces stormed a protest camp in Khartoum on Monday rose to 60, according to a medical group linked to the opposition.

In a message for the Muslim Eid al-Fitr broadcast on state television, Burhan paid homage to the uprising that began in December and culminated with the military overthrow and arrest of President Omar al-Bashir in April. He was still ready to hand over power to an elected government, he said.

In this frame grab from video provided by Sudan TV, Lieutenant General Abdel-Fattah Burhan, head of the Sudanese Transitional Military Council, TMC, makes a broadcast announcement in Khartoum, Sudan, Tuesday, June 4, 2029. The TMC on Tuesday said that they want to stage early elections in the country and that all agreements with protest leaders have been cancelled. The statement came a day after a pro-democracy sit-in outside the army command base in the capital Khartoum was violently overrun by the ruling army. Protest organizers said 35 people died in the carnage Monday. (Sudan TV via AP)

“We in the military council, extend our hands to negotiations without shackles except the interests of the homeland,” Burhan said.

Burhan had previously announced he was skipping any negotiations with protest groups and said he would organise elections within nine months.

His decision came after security forces stormed a protest camp site outside the Defence Ministry in central Khartoum in an operation that resulted in the death of at least 35 people, according to the doctors’ group.

The association said more people had been killed since then throughout Khartoum and its twin city of Omdruman.

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