Sudan – One of Sudan’s few functioning ministers believes key lawmakers jailed following the military takeover last month will be released soon. Sudan’s finance minister, Gibril Ibrahim, has appealed for continuing international support for the country’s democratic transition.
“Countries’ policy against Sudan should not be attributed solely to Gibril, (Prime Minister Abdalla) Hamdok, (military leader Abdel-Fattah Burhan), or anybody else. It should be more closely tied to policy, and if we are progressing toward democracy, a civilian government, and elections, the international community should continue to support the reform. ” Sudan’s top military leader, General Abdel-Fattah Burhan, dissolved the government and transitional council last month, arresting several political leaders and activists, including Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, who is currently under house arrest.
As part of the Juba Peace Agreement, Ibrahim has kept his position and will be part of the new administration when it is formed. The coup has sparked widespread international condemnation and major protests in Khartoum and other parts of Sudan. At least 23 demonstrators have been killed since October 25, according to the Sudanese Doctors Committee. Many of those jailed would be released soon, “starting with the prime minister,” Ibrahim stated. “I expect all political detainees to be released very soon,” he stated, providing the military keeps its word.
Sudan was in the midst of a tumultuous transition that saw long-time ruler Omar al-Bashir and his Islamist regime deposed. However, the transitional government has been beset by economic problems as it attempts to reform a faltering economy. Long-standing US sanctions have also kept the country out of the global economy.
Last year, sanctions were withdrawn, raising anticipation of an injection of international investment. However, all help has been blocked since the military takeover on October 25. The US has halted direct financial support worth $700 million (618.6 million euros), while the World Bank has halted help worth up to $2 billion (1.8 billion euros). Molly Phee, a prominent US diplomat, is now in Khartoum for mediation efforts. Burhan, on the other hand, has moved forward, introducing a new transitional council last week and promising a technocrat government soon. It’s still unclear whether Hamdok will accept the new administration’s invitation to join.