KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) — Sudanese protest organizers say they will announce a civilian transitional council on Sunday in a bid to "exert more pressure" on the military to hand over power following the overthrow of long-ruling President Omar al-Bashir earlier this month.
The Sudanese Professionals Association led four months of protests that eventually ended al-Bashir's 30-year reign, which was marred by multiple armed conflicts and widespread corruption. The umbrella group of unions says more than 100 people were killed by security forces since December, when the protests were sparked by a hike in the prices of basic goods.
The Sudanese military overthrew and arrested al-Bashir on April 11, and appointed a military council that has said it will rule for up to two years while elections are organized. The military has arrested senior officials from al-Bashir's government and sacked top judges and prosecutors.
The protesters nevertheless fear the military will cling to power, and have demanded an immediate transition to a civilian body that would govern for four years.
Mohammed al-Asam, a senior member of the SPA, told The Associated Press late Saturday that "we are ready with a clear plan for a transition with qualified names."
The association said it will announce the names at a press conference later Sunday outside the military's headquarters in Khartoum, where thousands of protesters have kept up a sit-in since April 6.
"We want a civil council immediately with a military representation. This is our demand," said al-Asam, who was detained for more than three months before being released after al-Bashir's ouster. He was held in the Koper prison in the capital, where al-Bashir himself is now imprisoned.
The 28-year-old doctor urged the international community to press the military to hand over power to civilians. He said the military council is becoming more powerful every day and that "this is dangerous to the revolution."
The military meanwhile told the chairman of the African Union Commission that it is working to "create an environment so political forces can rule in a peaceful and democratic way," according to the state-run SUNA news agency.
SUNA said Lt. Gen. Omer Zain-al-Abdin, head of the political committee of the military council, met with AU commission chairman Moussa Faki in Khartoum on Saturday.
The African Union on Monday gave Sudan's military 15 days to hand over power to a "civilian-led political authority" or face suspension from AU activities. The AU said a civilian authority should hold elections "as quickly as possible."
Magdy reported from Cairo.