Civil society groups on Friday accused authorities of arresting at least nine opposition leaders, ahead of fresh anti-government protests expected after weekly Muslim prayers.
A committee of professional organisations involved in the protests said in a statement that authorities had raided a meeting of opposition leaders in Khartoum. They detained a total of nine people, including Siddiq Youssef, a senior leader of Sudan’s Communist Party, as well as leaders from the pan-Arab Ba’ath and Nasserist parties, the statement said.
The raid came after a coalition of opposition groups called for more protests after the weekly noon prayers on Friday.
The head of the media office at the National Intelligence and Security Service denied any knowledge of the arrests.
Fourteen leaders of one of Sudan’s two main opposition groupings were detained last Saturday and then released some nine hours later.
Sudan doubles down on social media amid protests
A digital rights group is reporting that Sudanese authorities have clamped down on access to social media in the wake of spreading anti-government protests.
Access Now and the #KeepItOn coalition – a group that fights internet shutdowns – have thus called on network operators in the country to push back from state pressure and keep people online.
The coalition said on Thursday that it was demanding that: “operators like MTN Sudan and Zain Sudan to more transparently notify the public of restrictions and push back against government requests that could violate human rights.”
Government has officially denied any such move even though social media has been a hot spot for the organization of protesters in what started out as a protest against hikes in bread and fuel prices.
The death toll so far is another area of contention with the latest government figures pegged at below twenty whiles Amnesty said days ago that it was up to thirty-seven.