Soldiers arrested after Sudan protest deaths, military council says


Sudanese rebel leader Yasir Arman has said he and two comrades have been forcibly deported from Khartoum, on the second day of a nationwide civil disobedience campaign by protesters.

The protesters are demanding that the TMC, which has been in power since long-time ruler Omar al-Bashir was deposed and arrested in a peaceful military coup in April, hand power to a civilian-led government.

The country's last remaining internet connections were cut around 12pm local time (10am GMT) on Monday, said NetBlocks Group, an independent non-profit that works on digital rights and freedoms.

Military and paramilitary forces had unleashed mayhem on pro-democracy protesters last week, leaving over 100 people dead.

The new disruption has downed Sudan Telecom's Sudani service, along with Canar Telecom and Mobiltel Zain.

Talks between the opposition and the transitional military council broke down last week when security forces moved in to violently disperse the sit-in protest calling for a swift handover to civilian rule. Mobile internet connectivity has been largely offline since June 3, the group said.

Several shops, fuel stations and some branches of private banks were open, however, while public buses were also ferrying passengers and more vehicles and people were seen than the previous day, the correspondent said.

The military on Monday announced the arrest of several members of Sudan's regular security forces linked to the violent assault on the protesters, AFP reported, citing a statement carried by state news agency SUNA.

He will also discuss the situation with the Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, who has been trying to mediate between the military council and the opposition in Sudan, before later travelling to Mozambique and South Africa.

Opposition leaders have put forward a list of demands before they will agree to return to negotiations with the army over the country's political transition.

"The Alliance for Freedom and Change (umbrella protest movement) is fully responsible for recent unfortunate incidents. including blocking roads which is violating worldwide humanitarian laws", Lieutenant General Jamaleddine Omar said on state television late Sunday.

Doctors told The Guardian on Tuesday that they believe 70 incidents of rape took place during the attack on the protest camp.

Arman said on Twitter he had been "deported against my will by a military helicopter from Khartoum to Juba". The Sudanese protesters who succeeded in driving President Omar al-Bashir from power last month say their revolution won't be complete until they have dismantled what many describe as an Islamist-dominated "deep state" that underpinned his 30-year rule.

On Tuesday, an Ethiopian mediator between the two sides, Mahmoud Dirir, said that talks on restoring a civilian administration would begin soon.

African Union has suspended Sudan following the massacre.