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Elham AbolFateh

Middle East

UN Chief condemns killing of protesters by Sudanese security forces

Monday 03/June/2019 - 11:00 PM
Antonio Guterres
Antonio Guterres
Edited by: Mohamed Emad

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has condemned a Monday attack by Sudanese security forces that broke up a protest site in Khartoum and killed or wounded dozens of people، according to Voice of America.

"He condemns the use of force to disperse the protesters at the sit-in site، and he is alarmed by reports that security forces have opened fire inside medical facilities،" said a spokesman for Guterres at the United Nations in New York. "The Secretary-General reminds [Sudan's] Transitional Military Council of its responsibility for the safety and security of the citizens of Sudan. He urges all parties to act with utmost restraint."

Explosions and heavy machine gunfire were heard as security forces stormed a site outside the Defense Ministry where demonstrators had maintained a protest for the past eight weeks، demanding the military hand power over to a civilian authority.

Witnesses say that by mid-afternoon، the area had been cleared.
The Central Committee of Sudan Doctors، which is close to Sudan's protest movement، now says the death toll stands at 30 with many more injured.

In remarks from the spokesman، Guterres also called for unimpeded access for first responders at the sit-in site and in hospitals where the wounded are treated، and called on Sudanese authorities to conduct an independent investigation and hold people accountable for the deaths.

U.N. human rights chief Michelle Bachelet also condemned the attack and urged the security forces to stop immediately.

"Those exercising their rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and expression must be protected، not targeted or detained،" Bachelet said in a statement. "This is a fundamental tenet of international human rights law."

The U.S. embassy in Khartoum tweeted that the attacks on protesters "must stop."

The British embassy condemned the attack and called it an "outrageous step that will only lead to more polarization and violence."


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