Sudan's main protest group called yesterday for a general strike, saying two late-night negotiation sessions with the army had failed to reach a deal on how to lead the country after the overthrow of former president Omar al-Bashir.
An alliance of protest and opposition organizations is demanding civilians head a new Sovereign Council which is meant to oversee a three-year transition towards democracy. But the Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA) protest group said the army was still insisting on directing the transition and keeping a military majority on the council. "Civilian power means that the structure is fully civilian with a civilian majority in all its parts," the SPA said in a statement. It said members should mobilize for a strike, without giving a date.
The impasse has hit hopes of a quick recovery from the political turmoil that climaxed in the end of Bashir's three-decade rule on April 11. The army ousted the former general after months of protests against soaring prices, cash shortages and other economic hardships. It set up a Transitional Military Council (TMC) to rule the country and promised to hand over after elections. However, Sudanese protesters have sought guarantees of civilian control.
The two sides launched what had been billed as a final round of talks on the transition late on Sunday. The military council has been pushing for its chairman General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan to head the new sovereign council but protest leaders want a civilian.