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Sun, 09 Jun 2019 13:00 - Updated Sun, 09 Jun 2019 13:00

Two Sudan rebel leaders arrested after meeting Ethiopia PM -sources

KHARTOUM - Two Sudanese rebel leaders were arrested early on Saturday, opposition sources said, shortly after meeting visiting Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who is trying to mediate in a crisis threatening a transition to democracy.

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Abiy had on Friday urged Sudan’s military rulers and civilian opposition to exercise “bravery” in trying to agree steps towards democracy after the worst bloodshed since the overthrow in April of President Omar al-Bashir.

The Ethiopian premier visited days after Sudanese forces stormed a protest camp outside the Defence Ministry in Khartoum where demonstrators were demanding civilian rule. Dozens of people have been killed since Monday.

While no breakthrough was announced at the end of Abiy’s one-day visit, an aide to the Ethiopian prime minister said the talks went well and that Abiy would be returning to Sudan soon.

The ruling Transitional Military Council thanked Ethiopia on Saturday for its mediation efforts, state news agency SUNA said.

The TMC expressed its “openness and keenness to negotiate to reach satisfactory understandings that will lead to a national consensus..., leading to the establishment of a democratic transition,” SUNA said.

ARRESTS

However, two opposition figures who were at Friday’s meeting with Abiy said Ismail Jallab, secretary general of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N), and the armed group’s spokesman Mubarak Ardol were detained a few hours later.

Abiy offered to mediate after the opposition Declaration of Freedom and Change Forces (DFCF) alliance’s talks with the TMC over who will lead a transition period before elections had ground to a halt, then collapsed altogether after the raid on the protest camp. Reuters

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