The head of Sudan’s military transitional council has told the BBC the army will not use force against protesters who want it to leave power.
Lt-Gen Abdel Fattah Abdelrahman Burhan spoke as African leaders extended their ultimatum for the military to organise a return to civilian rule.
The army had warned it would remove protesters camped outside its headquarters in the capital, Khartoum.
President Omar al-Bashir was ousted from power on 11 April after 30 years.
Protesters accuse the military of being “remnants” of the ousted long-time ruler.
Leaders of the protest movement have suspended transition talks and co-operation with the military because they doubt its sincerity to hand over power.
A mass sit-in outside the military HQ has been taking place since 6 April. Five days later Mr Bashir was overthrown and replaced by a military council that promised it would relinquish power to civilians within two years, a proposal rejected by protesters.
Lt-Gen Burhan told the BBC HARDTalk programme that the military had taken control to ensure security in the country.
“Protesters have a right to demonstrate anywhere, and we want to reach an agreement [to hand over power], we are not here to stay. The army will go back to the barracks,” he said.
He added that he was willing to hand over power within days if a consensus can be reached with civilian groups.