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Sudan's Bashir ousted by military and placed under arrest

Video Credit: Reuters Studio - Duration: 02:11s - Published < > Embed
Sudan's Bashir ousted by military and placed under arrest

Sudan's Bashir ousted by military and placed under arrest

President Omar al-Bashir, who ruled Sudan with an iron fist for 30 years, was on Thursday overthrown in a coup by the armed forces which announced a two-year period of military rule to be followed by elections.

Mia Womersley reports

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Sudan's Bashir ousted by military and placed under arrest

**EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: THIS EDIT INCLUDES UPDATES TO THE STORY AND FRESH PICTURES** He ruled Sudan with an iron fist for 30 years.

But on Thursday (April 11) Sudan's president was overthrown in a coup by the African nation's armed forces.

They announced a two-year period of military rule, followed by elections.

President Omar al-Bashir has faced months of protests and calls to step down.

In a televised address, the country's Defence Minister said Bashir was under arrest in a "safe place".

And that a military council was now running the country.

Adding that there would be a three-month state of emergency, a nationwide ceasefire and the suspension of the constitution.

He also said Sudan's air space would be closed for 24 hours and border crossings shut until further notice.

Since Saturday, thousands of demonstrators had been camping out outside the Defence Ministry compound in Khartoum which contains Bashir's residence.

Clashes erupted on Tuesday (April 9) between soldiers trying to protect the protesters and intelligence and security personnel trying to disperse them.

At least 11 people died.

President Bashir, a former paratrooper, seized power in a bloodless coup in 1989.

A divisive figure, he withstood attempts by the West to weaken him.

In 1993 the U.S. added Bashir's government to its list of terrorism sponsors for harboring Islamist militants.

Bashir has also been indicted by the International Criminal Court over allegations of genocide in Sudan's Darfur region during an insurgency that began in 2003.

Persistent protests have rocked the country since December, sparked by the government's attempt to raise the price of bread.

And an economic crisis that has led to fuel and cash shortages.

Opposition figures have been calling for the military to help negotiate an end to the President's nearly three decades in power and a transition to democracy.

But the main organiser of the last weeks' protests rejected the 24-month transition under a military council.

The Sudanese Professionals Association called on protesters to carry on with the sit-in outside the country's Defence Ministry.



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