Sep 21, 2021 - World

Sudanese government says it put down coup attempt

Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok (L) and Sovereign Council Chief Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan. Photo: Ashraf Shazly/AFP via Getty

The Sudanese government announced on Tuesday morning that its military and security services had foiled an attempted coup from within the country’s armed forces.

Why it matters: The apparent coup attempt comes with Sudan’s transitional government — in which power is shared between civilians and generals — facing crises on several fronts two years after dictator Omar al-Bashir was toppled in a popular uprising.

Driving the news: According to the Sudanese military, the coup attempt began at 3am local time on Tuesday, with several military units trying to take control of the national radio and television stations and other strategic locations in Khartoum.

  • The perpetrators reportedly came mainly from armored units of the Sudanese military and patrolled the capital with dozens of tanks.
  • Several hours after the alleged coup started, the Sudanese government called for the public to go out to the streets to defend the gains of the revolution. But soon after that, the government announced the coup was foiled.
  • Sudanese officials said around 50 senior military officers and civilians were arrested for their alleged roles in the coup. Sudanese military officials told several Arab media outlets that the perpetrators were supporters of the Bashir regime and were affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood.

The latest: The government announced that the situation was under control and that the cabinet had convened to discuss next steps.

  • Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdook said during the cabinet meeting, which was aired live on Sudanese TV, that the government would take steps to reform the military and security services and dismantle the last elements of the Bashir regime. 

The big picture: Even before the alleged coup attempt, the Sudanese government had been contending with internal divisions, extreme economic difficulties, security challenges tied to disputes with neighboring Ethiopia and rising public discontent.

What next: Bashir is expected to be extradited soon to the International Criminal Court to stand trial for war crimes.

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