Chairman of Sudan’s new sovereign council sworn in

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General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the head of Sudan's ruling military council, addresses the crowd in Khartoum's twin city of Omdurman on June 29, 2019. - Burhan, told a rally in Omdurman, the twin city of Khartoum, that the generals were ready to give up power. "We promise you that we will reach an agreement fast with our brothers in the Alliance for Freedom and Change and other political groups," he said. "We are ready to cede power today to an elected government that is acceptable to all the people of Sudan. (Photo by ASHRAF SHAZLY / AFP) (Photo credit should read ASHRAF SHAZLY/AFP/Getty Images)
General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the head of Sudan’s ruling military council, addresses the crowd in Khartoum’s twin city of Omdurman on June 29, 2019. (Photo credit ASHRAF SHAZLY/AFP/Getty Images)

The former head of Sudan’s transitional military council General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan was on Wednesday sworn in as the chairman of the new sovereign council, according to reports by the state news agency SUNA.

General Burhan will be the country’s head of state for 21 months, just more than half of the 39-month transition, after which a civilian is expected to take over for the remainder of the period.

The sovereign council, which replaces the transitional military council, is tasked with overseeing the creation of a government and legislative assembly.

The military council ruled Sudan since April following the removal of former president Omar al-Bashir after months of civilian protests.

10 other members of the council were also expected to be sworn on Wednesday in even as Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok was expected to assume office.

On Saturday, a power-sharing agreement was signed by the military and leaders of the protest movement in Khartoum paving the way for a civilian-led government and elections.

One of the primary goals of the new leadership of Sudan is to revive the country’s faltering economy. The unexpected tripling of the price of bread in December last year led to the start of protests which resulted in Bashir’s ouster.

Another expected goal is the lobbying for its suspension from the African Union to be lifted and also its removal from the United States’ list of state sponsors of terrorism.

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