Sudan protesters toughen stand

Saudi Arabia reiterates support for Sudanese people

A man paints the Sudanese flag on a demonstrator's face in Khartoum, Sudan, Tuesday. — Reuters

Khartoum — Sudanese protesters have hardened their stand, demanding a transitional military council be scrapped and immediately replaced with civilian rule as Tuesday they refused to end a days-long sit-in outside army headquarters.

Protest leaders have gradually toughened their approach towards the transitional military council, as policy announcements from its uniformed officers have multiplied.

Amid widespread anger at the number of faces from the old regime, the protesters secured the replacement of its first chairman, a longtime Bashir loyalist after just 24 hours last week.

As weekend talks on the transition failed to make headway, protest leaders who initially demanded a "swift" handover to civilian rule, began demanding first an "immediate" handover then the military council's dissolution.

In Riyadh, the Council of Ministers chaired by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman on Tuesday reiterated the Kingdom’s support for the Sudanese people’s views and actions taken by the Transitional Military Council in the interests of the Sudanese people.

Moscow recognized the new authorities in Sudan, Russia's RIA news agency cited Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov as saying on Tuesday. — Agencies

Demands of protesters

* Dissolving the transitional military council immediately and replacing it with a civilian one with the army also represented.

* An immediate transfer of power to a transitional civilian government to govern for a four-year term, followed by elections.

* The dissolution of Bashir’s National Congress Party, with its top leaders brought to justice -- including the ousted president.

* The confiscation of NCP properties.

* The re-instatement of the country’s 2005 constitution, which the military council suspended shortly after ousting Bashir on April 11.

* The release of all civilians arrested in connection with the protest movement, as well as soldiers and police detained for refusing to shoot at protesters.

* An end to the state of emergency Bashir imposed on Feb. 22.