KHARTOUM, Sudan — As protesters massed at the gates of Sudan’s military headquarters, calling for the ouster of President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, the country’s Air Force chief stepped outside to address them.
Lt. Gen. Salah Abdelkhalig, a hard-bitten veteran of Sudan’s many wars, assured the protesters they had nothing to fear from the military. “This army is your army,” he recalled saying. “We are not going to fight you.”
What few in the crowd knew was that among the faces gathered in front of him was his own son.
“I had to be there,” said the son, Abdelkhalig Salah, 28, a commercial airline pilot whose frustrations with decades of decline under Mr. al-Bashir had prompted him to protest outside his father’s office.