Sudan's Bashir charged on corruption in first public appearance since removal

Omar al-Bashir

Omar al-Bashir

Bashir, wearing traditional white robes and turban, was driven in a Toyota Land Cruiser to the prosecutor's office in Khartoum, a Reuters witness said.

Al-Bashir, who has led the country for 30 years, is wanted by the global war crimes tribunal for atrocities in Darfur.

Bashir, who was toppled on 11 April following months of protests and is now being held in the capital's Kober prison, swept to power in an Islamist-backed coup in 1989.

Mr Bashir is also wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC), accused of organising war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sudan's Darfur region - charges he denies.

When he imposed the state of emergency on 22 February in a bid to quell protests that erupted in December, Bashir issued a decree making it illegal to possess more than 5,000 dollars in foreign currency.

It was gathered that al-Bashir was guided heavily by fully armed men.

He said the probe partly related to millions of dollars worth of cash in United States dollars, euros and Sudanese pounds that were found in al-Bashir's home a week after his ouster.

Demonstrators and USA officials have called for an independent probe into the crackdown.

Massive South American blackout leaves 44 million without power
A vendor waits for customers during a nationwide blackout, in Buenos Aires, Argentina , on Sunday, June 16, 2019. Work is under way to restore power, though the outage may last hours, according to the statement.

The sit-in began on April 6, days before al-Bashir's toppling and continued as protesters stuck to demands for civilian rule. But as talks over the composition of an interim body faltered, soldiers opened fire on the sit-in.

Doctors linked to the protest movement say about 120 people have been killed in Khartoum since the crackdown, while the health ministry says 61 people died nationwide on 3 June. "Those who were responsible for the deaths of the protesters at the sit-in must be held accountable, the military council should name those who gave the orders, that's what we should focus on now". Al-Waleed Mahmoud's comments came two days after military council spokesman Gen. Shams Eddin Kabashi said the council had discussed dispersing the protesters with top judicial officials.

He acknowledged that "violations happened" without elaborating.

"Events were moving forward in such a favorable direction after 35 years of tragedy for Sudan".

"The whole process is not independent and is not credible", he said. Minutes later he walked out scowling after prosecutors read out the charges he faces.

His trial will be a test of how serious the country's transitional military council is about trying to erase the legacy of his autocratic 30-year rule, marked by widespread violence, economic collapse and the secession of South Sudan.

"We have a mandate from the Sudanese people to form a government from technocrats", he told a press conference in Khartoum. "But our problem is that the parliament will not be an elected one", he told supporters in Khartoum.

Hemeti promised the death penalty for those involved in the attacks.

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