AU suspends Sudan, demands end of military rule

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The African Union (AU) has announced that it has suspended Sudan from membership until power is transferred to a civilian-led authority, reports Al-Jazeera News Network and monitored by Zambian Eye.

The bloc had previously urged a smooth transition of power, but was accused of dragging its heels on a suspension in the wake of a bloody crackdown against protesters by the Sudanese military.

Handing down the suspension, the AU’s Peace and Security Council said the transfer of power to a civilian-led authority was the only way to allow the Sudan to exit the current crisis.

Security forces killed scores of protesters on Monday, in the deadliest day of violence in the country since longtime ruler President Omar al-Bashir was forced from power in April.

The AU’s Peace and Security Department said in a post on Twitter on Thursday, June 6 that Sudan’s participation in all AU activities would be suspended with immediate effect – “until the effective establishment of a civilian-led transitional authority,” which it described as the only way to “exit from the current crisis.”

The announcement followed an emergency meeting by the AU in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, after the violent dispersal of a protest camp in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, began on Monday.

At least 108 people have been killed and more than 500 wounded, according to the Central Committee of Sudanese Doctors (CCSD), while a health ministry official was quoted as saying the death toll stood at 61.

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