The head of Sudan’s military council has stood down a day after leading a coup that toppled long-time leader Omar al-Bashir amid a wave of protests.
Defence Minister Awad Ibn Auf announced his decision on state TV. He named as his successor Lt Gen Abdel Fattah Abdelrahman Burhan, according to BBC.
Ibn Auf said he was confident Burhan “will steer the ship to safe shores”, and added he was stepping aside to “preserve unity” of the armed forces.
Sudan is another example of dictatorship collapse following Venezuela after its President Omar Hassan al-Bashir was ousted in a coup by the military on Thursday.
The dictator’s downfall followed months of unrest which began in December over the rising cost of living. At least 38 people have died in the protests, BBC reported.
According to the Washington Post, the protests against Bashir have been dominated by women. Day after day on the streets of Khartoum, as many as two-thirds of those who turn out are women. Photos of women — angry, defiant, now celebratory — have become emblems of the uprising.
Why women led the uprising in Sudan? Under the provisions of the public order law (passed in 1992 and amended in 1996), women have been arrested, detained, beaten and imprisoned for wearing what are perceived to be indecent clothes, such as trousers or short skirts, going out with their male friends, or not covering their hair when in public. Especially victimized by this law were women from poor communities who worked, for instance, as tea and food vendors.
Mr Bashir is the subject of two international arrest warrants issued by the International Criminal Court (ICC), which accuses him of organising war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sudan’s Darfur region between 2003 and 2008, allegations he denies.
Bashir may be put on trial inside Sudan, according to the military council set up after the coup. The military council will be in place for a maximum of two years, it says, but could last only a month if the transition to civilian rule is managed smoothly.
The army has said it will oversee a transitional period followed by elections. As part of this, it is imposing a three-month state of emergency, with the constitution suspended.
From what is happening right now in Sudan, Chinese people can draw some experience and have a vision of how China is going to deal with a possible social crisis when the Communist government is overthrown in the near future.
Like today’s coup in Sudan, Chinese military may also play a key role in bringing down that communist dictatorship and in keeping social stability at a regime change. No one with a conscience would like to see China in chaos at times of emergencies.
Lt-Gen Omar Zain al-Abidin, who heads the military council’s political committee, said on Friday: “The solutions will be devised by those in protest. We have no ambition to hold the reins of power. We are here to provide an all-inclusive umbrella.”
The military leader said, “You, the people, will provide the solutions for all economic and political issues. We have come with no ideology, we have come here to maintain order and security to provide the opportunity for the people of Sudan to achieve the change they aspire to.”
“”Our key responsibility is to maintain public order,” he added. “We will have zero tolerance for any misdeed in any corner of the country.”
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang Friday told a news briefing that no matter how the situation in Sudan changes, China will continue to maintain and develop friendly cooperative relations with Sudan.
For several years, President Xi Jinping has referred to Bashir as an old friend. The Sudanese president expressed his firm support for Xi’s the Belt and Road Initiative when they met at the 2018 Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation.
Calling Sudan an influential country in Africa and the Arab world, President Xi said China firmly supports Sudan’s efforts to safeguard sovereignty, security and stability and opposes foreign interference in Sudan’s internal affairs.
According to BBC and local media, from 2000 to 2011, there are approximately 65 Chinese official development finance projects identified in Sudan. These projects include helping construct the presidential palace and railway from Khartoum to Port Sudan, $519 million USD loan for the hydro-mechanical components of the 1,250 MW Merowe hydroelectric dam, and the construction of a 500 MV coal fired power plant in Port Sudan and a 320 MV gas fired power plant in Rabak at the cost of 512 million USD by the Shandong Electric Power Construction Corporation in 2005.
The Chinese spokesman Lu Kang responded to a related question from a reporter, “As to the Chinese investment and other interests in Sudan that you referred to, I’d like to point out that, over the years, the bilateral relations between China and Sudan have enjoyed sound development and carried out some mutually-beneficial cooperation that have brought benefits to both peoples.”
Chinese Communist Party leaders shall shiver with the news of the 30-year-long dictatorship collapse in Sudan. What they most fear is a “color revolution” that will happen at any time within the world’s biggest dictatorship.
Like the Sudanese women who have been recklessly arrested, detained, beaten and imprisoned under Bashir’s cruelty, 99% of the good and hard-working Chinese people feel the same kind of pain under socialist suppression.
In the infant formula scandal, the vaccine scandal, the poisonous food scandal in the Sichuan primary school, and many other tragedies like the 709 lawyers, it is Chinese women, those wives and mothers, who have suffered the most in their daily lives.
As Miles Kwok has said, what he worries most is the suffering of the common Chinese people when western nations start to impose stricter sanctions on the Chinese economy. The world shall never look at China as the danger and threats of humanity, and we must differentiate the Communist Party from China and the Chinese people. We shall not let our brothers and sisters pay the price for the evil and wrong doings of the small radical group of state traitors.
Everything is just beginning.
By Cloudy Seagail