By Theodore Jones –
A senior Sudanese police officer was killed Thursday during protests in the Sudanese capital, an official statement said, as security forces fired tear gas at thousands who kept up rallies against an October military coup.
Brigadier General Ali Bareema Hamad, “fell martyr while doing his duties and securing protests” in the capital, Khartoum, the police statement said on Facebook, without giving details of how he was killed.
His was the first fatality announced among security forces since protests calling for a return to civilian rule began more than two months ago.
A security crackdown on protests has left at least 63 people dead and hundreds wounded, according to medics, who said many of the protesters were killed by live rounds.
Thursday’s rallies converged from several parts of Khartoum and came after a United Nations bid to facilitate talks between rival Sudanese factions received tepid support.
The UN push aimed at resolving the crisis since the October 25 military coup led by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, and the resignation of the civilian prime minister Abdalla Hamdok earlier this month.
Sudan has no government, foreign aid has been suspended, and regular demonstrations against the coup — attended by up to tens of thousands — are routinely met by a violent crackdown.
Demonstrators also took to the streets in the capital’s twin city of Omdurman as well as in Port Sudan in the country’s east, according to witnesses.