Tensions between military and civilian components of government escalate “in unprecedented ways” as security is removed

Yesterday, the crisis between the military and civilian components of the Sudanese transitional government worsened in an unprecedented manner as security forces tasked with protecting the recovered assets and the Sudanese office building. The Empowerment Elimination Committee was ordered to relinquish its posts, leaving the office and assets vulnerable.

The Empowerment Elimination Committee *, also known as the Empowerment Elimination, Anti-Corruption, and Funds Recovery Committee or Committee for Dismantling the June 30 Regime and Recovering Public Funds, explained that the joint forces guarding the recovered real estate and other assets had apparently ordered to retire from their post immediately.

The committee called the step “strange” and called on all revolutionaries to immediately go to the committee office in Khartoum to agree on how to secure the buildings, including the committee office.

In response, hundreds of activists flocked to the committee’s office and said they were ready to fill the security void, while sources reported that police forces returned to guard the sites late Sunday evening.

The Committee held a press conference at its office last night amid loud cheers from activists. Addressing those attending the conference, Transitional Sovereignty Council (CST) member and current Committee head Mohamed El Faki said: “I was sure the people would act when I called for action to protect the transition “.

“We will defend the government and the democratic transition and we will fill the streets if there is a threat to the democratic transition”

He explained that he was not afraid when the guards were removed because he was guarded by “the spirit of comradeship”. He said: “We will defend the government and the democratic transition and we will fill the streets when there is a threat to the democratic transition. No one will scare us, and we will not allow anyone to relapse or dictate. Access to elections will be guarded by these crowds.

He said the committee’s office building would turn into a center of confrontation and resistance if needed. He referred to a scheduled meeting with the leaders of the resistance committees for reflection today.

Military orders

During the press conference, Salah Mannaa, a leading member of the Empowerment Elimination Committee, said that forces had been withdrawn from 22 locations by order of the Sudanese Armed Forces General Staff (SAF ), of which the President of the TSC, Lieutenant General Abdelfattah El Burhan is the Commander-in-Chief.

Mannaa further noted that members of the military component of the TSC did not respond to the committee’s messages. “We asked the governor of Khartoum to send forces because he is also the head of the Khartoum State Security Committee, but he indicated that there was already an order to withdraw the police forces from each site, ”Mannaa said.

He said Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok expressed surprise at the withdrawal of joint forces and police and explained that the police returned to the sites after the prime minister’s appeal. “The sites are now secure and the police are doing their job. “

Cabinet Affairs Minister Khaled Omar said the withdrawal of the guards is part of a series of developments aimed at undermining the transition period. At the joint press conference, he praised the revolutionaries’ willingness to protect the committee office.

He said the people had no problem with the SAF and stressed that they also wanted to eliminate the remnants of the Al Bashir regime and a unified army.

Omar stressed that the transition period will end with democratic elections, that the constitutional document will be implemented as it is and that no party can overthrow it.

Military and civil tensions

Media sources reported that the military component of the Sovereignty Council suspended all meetings with the civilian component. A crisis committee was reportedly set up in the Council of Ministers, which held continuous meetings chaired by Prime Minister Hamdok.

The sources also reported that El Burhan held a meeting with army officers and observed the withdrawal of military guards from a number of civilian members of the Sovereignty Council, leaving them unprotected.

Lt Gen Abdelfattah El Burhan (SUNA)

SAF reaction

In a speech yesterday, the fourth of its kind after Tuesday’s coup attempt, El Burhan reiterated that “the armed forces are the guardians of the people and the homeland”.

” The armed forces will not turn against the December revolution ”

During the opening ceremony of a department of the Sudanese Heart Center in Khartoum, he said: “We will not allow the country to be ruled by small forces that have hijacked the revolution.” He added that “the Sudanese soldier does not defend a party or a group and does not earn dollars from other parties” and that “the armed forces will not turn against the December revolution”.

El Burhan promised to reveal the affiliations of the perpetrators of the attempted coup and said the SAF “will endeavor to reform and restructure the Sudanese military institution, while not allowing any partisan activity within the army ”.

“We will clean up the armed forces and leave no Al Bashir affiliates there,” he said. El Burhan further underlined the determination of the armed forces to complete the democratic transition and hold the elections on time. He also confirmed that the armed forces would return to their barracks after the elections.

A different tone from RSF

TSC Vice President and Rapid Support Forces (RSF) Commander Mohamed Hamdan ‘Hemeti’ Dagalo presented a more confrontational tone and said that “there is no force that can isolate me from my forces. […] Any threat coming from the streets will be faced by streets that support us. “

“The armed forces are not responsible for the insecurity”

During a speech at a funeral in Khartoum on Saturday evening, Hemeti said “the international community cannot threaten us”. “They were civilians [revolutionaries] who blocked the streets, not the military, so the armed forces are not responsible for the insecurity ”.

He further underlined that “the leaders of the indigenous administration and the political forces cannot be dismissed on the pretext that they belong to the old regime”.

Coup attempt

Tensions between the military and civilian components of the transitional government have reached an all-time high since the failed coup attempt last week. After the coup, El Burhan and Hemeti blamed political forces for the crisis in the country. In response, government officials accused the military of stealing the revolution.

After statements by military leaders, Taha Osman Ishag, member of the Sudanese Professional Association’s Anti-Corruption Committee, said El Burhan and Hemeti’s statements “are more dangerous than the coup itself “.

* The Committee was established by the government of Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok late last year with the aim of purging Sudan of the remnants of the Al Bashir regime. Accountability (tamkin) is the term with which the ousted government of Omar Al Bashir has supported its affiliates in state affairs by granting them extensive privileges, including government office and the establishment of various businesses.

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