Sudan protest leaders to unveil civilian ruling body

The Sudanese Professionals Association spearheaded the demonstrations that ousted Omar al-Bashir. (File/AFP)
Updated 21 April 2019
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Sudan protest leaders to unveil civilian ruling body

  • The Sudanese Professionals Association called on its supporters, foreign diplomats and journalists to be present at the announcement
  • Thousands have kept up protests since Bashir’s ouster demanding civilian rule

KHARTOUM: Sudan’s protest movement said it will unveil a civilian ruling body on Sunday, piling pressure on the military council which seized power after toppling president Omar Al-Bashir last week.
The Sudanese Professionals Association called on its supporters, foreign diplomats and journalists to be present on Sunday outside army headquarters where thousands have kept up protests since Bashir’s ouster demanding civilian rule.
“This press conference at 7:00 p.m. on Sunday will announce the names of a civilian council,” the SPA said in the Friday statement.
The SPA, which organized the four months of nationwide protests that led up to Bashir’s overthrow, has toughened its stand against the military council, demanding its immediate dissolution and replacement.
“We are demanding that this civilian council, which will have representatives of the army, replace the military council,” an SPA leader, Ahmed Al-Rabia, told AFP.


US sanctions target Iranians’ access to food, medicine: foreign minister

Updated 5 min 55 sec ago

US sanctions target Iranians’ access to food, medicine: foreign minister

  • The United States on Friday imposed a new round of sanctions on Iran
  • Unconfirmed reports on social media said a number of Iranian websites were under a cyberattack

DUBAI: Iran’s foreign minister on Saturday denounced renewed US sanctions against its central bank as an attempt to deny ordinary Iranians access to food and medicine, and said the move was a sign of US desperation.
The United States on Friday imposed a new round of sanctions on Iran, some aimed at its central bank and sovereign wealth fund, following attacks on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia that Riyadh and US officials have blamed on Iran.
Iran denies involvement in the attacks, which initially halved oil output from Saudi Arabia. Responsibility was claimed by Yemen’s Houthi movement, an Iranian-aligned group fighting a Saudi-led alliance in Yemen’s civil war.
“This is a sign of US desperation ... When they repeatedly sanction the same institution, this means their attempt at bringing the Iranian nation to its knees under ‘maximum pressure’ has failed,” Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif told reporters in remarks shown on state television.
“But this is dangerous and unacceptable as an attempt at blocking ... the Iranian people’s access to food and medicine,” Zarif said, speaking after arriving in New York for the annual UN General Assembly next week.
Meanwhile, unconfirmed reports on social media said a number of Iranian websites — including those of some petrochemical firms — were under a cyberattack. There was no immediate official comment, and the websites of the main state oil company NIOC appeared to be functioning normally. Residents said their Internet access was not affected.
The fresh sanctions target the Central Bank of Iran, which was already under other US sanctions, the National Development Fund of Iran — the country’s sovereign wealth fund — and an Iranian company that US officials say is used to conceal financial transfers for Iranian military purchases.
Zarif said he would meet on Wednesday with foreign ministers of the remaining signatories to the 2015 nuclear accord, which was agreed with Britain, France, Germany China and Russia as well as the United States.
“As we have said before, the United States can only attend if it returns to the (nuclear accord) ... and ends its economic war against Iran,” Zarif said.
The United States withdrew from the accord last year and re-imposed unilateral sanctions on Iran.
“I hope the US government realizes that they are no longer the only economic superpower in the world and that there are many countries that want to benefit from the Iranian market,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said, according to state media.