Protesters gather outside homes of comrades killed by security forces in Sudan

Friday's gatherings designed to highlight the use of excessive force used against demonstrators

Sudanese youths beat drums and chant slogans as they tour neighbourhoods in the capital Khartoum in support of the families of protesters killed since last year's military coup. AFP
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Hundreds of antimilitary protesters in Sudan marked a “day for the martyrs” on Friday, gathering outside the Khartoum homes of some of the 73 demonstrators killed by security forces during street rallies that have swept the country since an October military takeover.

Activists and witnesses said the protesters gathered outside the victims’ homes in Khartoum and the Sudanese capital’s twin cities of Umm Dorman and Bahri.

The protesters chanted slogans against the military to the beat of drums and carried banners bearing the images of fallen comrades.

There were no reports of clashes with security forces.

Friday's commemorations were called by pro-democracy groups in a show of solidarity with the bereaved families and to highlight the use of excessive force by the security forces since the coup that derailed the country’s democratic transition.

Besides the 73 dead, at least 2,000 protesters have been wounded in the clashes since the coup led by army chief Gen Abdel Fattah Al Burhan.

Millions of Sudanese have taken to the streets to join anti-coup rallies in Khartoum and in cities across the vast country.

Gen Al Burhan has repeatedly promised to investigate the killing of protesters but consistently failed to specify who will be probing them, when their findings will be announced or how the culprits would be held accountable. He has meanwhile given far-reaching powers of arrest, search and surveillance to security agencies and commended security forces on their handling of the protests.

The military has accused protesters of resorting to violence, a charge categorically denied by the pro-democracy movement that labelled the allegation an attempt to tarnish the image of the protesters and justify the use of excessive force.

Gen Al Burhan this week announced a new Cabinet to run the day-to-day affairs of the country, giving ministerial rank to the top civil servants in every ministry. He did not name a prime minister.

Ayman Sayyed Salim, who was named youth and sports minister, resigned on Friday. He said in his letter of resignation that he was surprised by his “unconstitutional” appointment, AFP reported.

Updated: January 21, 2022, 7:07 PM