Sudan Says Spy Agency Mutiny Quelled After Intense Gunfire

(Bloomberg) --

Sudan’s government said it contained a violent mutiny over pay by members of the intelligence services, the latest challenge for the North African country trying to overcome decades of dictatorship.

Gunfire early Tuesday afternoon rocked parts of the capital, Khartoum, that are home to buildings used by the powerful security apparatus. Soldiers and allied militiamen quickly deployed and closed off major streets, while flights from the city’s main airport were suspended until 8 p.m.

The army said early Wednesday two soldiers were killed and four others were wounded during the operation to eliminate the rebellion, according to al-Arabiya.

The uprising was staged by intelligence staff objecting to the restructuring of the service and their financial compensation, Information Minister Faisal Mohamed Saleh said on state TV. He described mutinies in greater Khartoum’s Riyadh, Suba and Bahri districts, as well as al-Obeid, a regional capital about 370 kilometers (230 miles) to the southwest.

‘Under Control’

Sudan, whose longtime ruler Omar al-Bashir was ousted in April amid mass protests, is being governed by a transitional administration that brings together civilians and the army. Later Tuesday, Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok declared “the incidents which took place today are under control.”

“They will not stop us and our mission nor will they be a reason for us to retreat from the goals of this revolution,” the former United Nations economist said on his Twitter account.

Flights were suspended from 3 p.m. to protect passengers, the spokesman of the civil aviation authority, Abdul Hafiz Abdul Rahman, said by phone, without elaborating. Khartoum International Airport is close to the city’s Riyadh district.

Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the head of Sudan’s sovereign council, said in a statement that armed forces had gained control of all military headquarters and Khartoum airport had resumed operations, al-Arabiya reported early Wednesday.

What happened Tuesday was an attempt to abort the revolution, al-Burhan said. “The armed forces will remain cohesive to protect the transitional period,” he said.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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