Khartoum — Scores of protesters rallied in the Sudanese capital on Thursday as President Omar al-Bashir swore in a new cabinet to tackle an economic crisis that has triggered months of protests against his rule.
Chanting their movement’s catch-cry “Freedom, peace, justice”, protesters took to the streets in areas of Khartoum and its twin city of Omdurman, witnesses said. But security forces swiftly confronted them with tear gas, they said.
“How long will you remain silent?” chanted some protesters, urging residents to join the demonstrations.
Bashir on Thursday swore in a new cabinet tasked with tackling the economic crisis, the key factor behind the protests. The new cabinet led by Prime Minister Mohamed Tahir Eila is Sudan’s third government in less than two years, with the previous two sacked by Bashir for failing to revive the economy.
“We recognise the main issues, the issues of bread and oil, that need to be solved,” Eila told reporters on Wednesday. “The economic issues need to be solved immediately as it impacts inflation and our exchange rate.”
Sudan has for years been grappling with soaring inflation and an acute shortage of foreign currency, especially since the secession of south in 2011 that took away the bulk of oil earnings.