In separate statements, Sudan’s state media and a top council official said that the “situation is under control” and that those involved in the coup attempt have been arrested. Although little is still known about the participants, early reports indicate that it involved members of the Armored Corps, and that at least 40 officers have been arrested.
A government spokesman later said on state TV that the coup plotters include ‘remnants’ of the Bashir regime.
Several government sources told AFP that the country’s security agencies received information about the planned coup on Monday 20 September evening, providing sufficient time to thwart the dawn attempt on multiple government institutions including state TV headquarters, and army headquarters.
The failed coup is the most brazen attack on the country’s shaky transitional council, which includes both civilian and military representatives. The council took over after the ousting former president Omar al-Bashir in 2019, but it has struggled to provide solutions to the major problems that finally undid the long-serving dictator’s three-decade reign.
It has also been fighting back pro-Bashir forces. In June, authorities in Khartoum detained more than 200 members of the former ruling party. It said they had been “preparing for acts of destruction”, echoing similar sentiments made by Abdalla Hamdok, Sudan’s Prime Minister, just weeks before.
Likewise, the protests in June against an IMF-brokered debt deal, which would see higher costs of basic goods on the population, saw hundreds take to the streets across Sudan demanding the government resign.
Some analysts believe Bashir’s backers are piggybacking on social discontent to boost his case – his trial is due to restart shortly.
Old school coup
The coup attempt will remind those Sudanese from the older generations of the 1960-1970s era, after soldiers on Monday seized the radio station in Omdurman along with demonstrators blocking key roads around Port Sudan, while life in Khartoum continued largely oblivious to such developments.
More on this story as it develops
Understand Africa's tomorrow... today
We believe that Africa is poorly represented, and badly under-estimated. Beyond the vast opportunity manifest in African markets, we highlight people who make a difference; leaders turning the tide, youth driving change, and an indefatigable business community. That is what we believe will change the continent, and that is what we report on. With hard-hitting investigations, innovative analysis and deep dives into countries and sectors, The Africa Report delivers the insight you need.View subscription options