At least 7 people dead in Sudan protests

The shootings are reportedly the deadliest in the capital since protests erupted in December, in response to the release of jailed opposition leaders.

The latest bloodshed in Khartoum follows at least 18 deaths from gunshots last week during demonstrations calling for President Omar al-Bashir to step down.

Bashir, who has been in power since 1989, was re-elected in 2015 after three decades as prime minister, although he has recently faced mounting pressure to concede to protesters’ demands for him to leave office.

Mohamed Abdallah, director of the hospital where the fatalities were taken, told CNN Sunday that he had “received 10 martyrs” — a legal designation for someone who died during violent clashes with police.

The dead included a 3-year-old boy, Abdallah said.

Pictures on social media showed a baby named Isaac who was shot in the head during the anti-government protests, leading to criticism from rights groups. The child’s death sparked condemnation on Twitter from activists and activists.

Since the demonstrations broke out late last month, the government has responded by arresting several leading figures including Kamal El Aty, a member of the National Umma Party who was widely considered one of the most influential opposition figures in Sudan.

Thousands of people have also been arrested in recent weeks, Human Rights Watch said.

Tens of thousands have demonstrated against President Bashir’s rule and protest leader Minni Minnawi was released from prison last week.

Sudan was on the UN’s list of “state sponsors of terrorism” in 1993, but has long been seen as a key ally of the US.

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