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Sudan: the putsch "failed", says paramilitary general Hemedti

Sudan: the putsch "failed", says paramilitary general Hemedti
General Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo, better known as Hemedti   -  
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Sudan's number two military commander, Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, also known as "Hemedti", says the October putsch had "failed", suggesting that he would intervene if "Sudan is heading for the abyss".

He said he had failed to bring about change in the country, and that he would do so if "Sudan is heading towards the abyss".

"And the situation is only getting worse, of course, there are positive points, but there are also negative points," he continued, citing, in particular, the cessation of international aid - two billion dollars a year - and the demonstrators killed - at least 116 shot dead by the security forces since the putsch, according to pro-democracy doctors.

Asked about a possible candidacy in the general elections promised by the new government headed by army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Burhane in July 2023, General Hemedti refused to say, as General Burhane did, that he would not run.

"I have no ambition to run (...) but if we see that Sudan is heading towards the abyss, we will be there, we are part of the Sudanese people," he said, while experts often point to the competition between the army and the paramilitary and especially between their respective leaders within the military power.

Composed of Janjaweed militiamen accused of atrocities during the long and deadly war in Darfur (west), the RSF was also accused of being involved in the repression of the revolt of 2019 that ended 30 years of the military-Islamist dictatorship of Omar al-Bashir and launched a transition led hand in hand by civilians and military.

But since the generals brutally dismissed their civilian partners at dawn on 25 October 2021, Sudan has been sinking deeper into political and economic stagnation.

The value of the Sudanese pound has been divided by eight since the fall of Bashir, Sudan is once again a member of the international community after having been granted a lifting of US sanctions, inflation is running at 200% and according to the World Food Programme (WFP) the price of the average food basket has risen by 57.8% since the beginning of the year.

At the beginning of July, General Burhane said he would step aside in favour of a civilian government, without convincing the demonstrators who continue to shout "Down with Burhane" in their thousands. The political parties remain divided over the attitude to adopt towards the army, which has been in charge of Sudan almost since independence.

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