Flogging sentence dropped for female protesters

BBC World Service

People chanting and shouting during a protest calling for the resignation of the Sudanese president in the capital, Khartoum.
Sudan's wave of protests began in December last year

A court in Sudan has overturned flogging sentences for nine women accused of taking part in protests against President Omar al-Bashir.

The women were arrested on Thursday, then on Saturday they were sentenced to a month in jail and 20 lashes each.

The appeals court ordered their immediate release, saying they had been in prison long enough.

On Monday, parliament halved a year-long state of emergency imposed by President Bashir.

There have been weeks of protests, originally against the rising cost of living but now also focused on removing the president from power.

More about Sudan:

Sudan MPs shorten state of emergency

Mary Harper

Africa editor, BBC World Service

Sudanese protesters wave their national flag and chant slogans during an anti-government demonstration in the capital Khartoum's twin city of Omdurman
Sudanese protesters wave their national flag and chant slogans during an anti-government demonstration in the capital Khartoum's twin city of Omdurman

Parliament in Sudan has voted to shorten to six months a state of emergency declared by President Omar al-Bashir in February.

It was initially imposed for one year, following widespread protests over the cost of living.

The deputy speaker of parliament Ahmed Attijani said some MPs opposed the measure because it limited people's freedoms.

Protesters have called for Mr Bashir to stand down.

Activists say more than 800 people have been tried in emergency courts recently set up in Sudan.

Sudan protesters released as women march

Will Ross

Africa editor, BBC World Service

A court in Sudan has overturned prison sentences handed down last week to eight protesters and has ordered their release.

The eight demonstrators had been given jail terms of up to five years by new emergency courts set up in an effort to end protests calling for President Omar al-Bashir to step down.

An emergency appeals court cancelled the jail terms and ordered them to pay fines.

Meanwhile dozens of women have been arrested while demonstrating on the streets of Khartoum.

Some tweeted before the march, which was organised in support of women on the eve of International Women's Day:

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

Hundreds of people have been detained since the protests began last December.

Sudan's president hands over the running of the country's ruling party to his deputy

The opposition's Mubarak al-Fadil says this won't appease protesters in Sudan.
Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir has handed over the running the ruling National Congress Party to his deputy and key supporter, Ahmed Haroun. Mr al-Bashir will retain his presidential powers. The move came shortly after protests in several parts of the country, in defiance of a state of emergency and a ban on protests. The protesters, who have been on the streets since December, want him to stand down. Newsday's James Copnall spoke to opposition leader, Mubarak al-Fadil, who until recently was a minister in a unity government. Why does he think Mr al-Bashir took this decision? 

Photo: President Omar al-Bashir in the Sudanese capital Khartoum Credit: Ashraf Shazly/ AFP/Getty Images.

Protesters defy ban in Sudan

Anti-government protests have taken place in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, as well as other parts of the country, despite a nationwide ban on demonstrations.

This footage of Thursday's demonstrations on Zalat street in Khartoum has been shared by the organisers, Sudanese Professionals Association:

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Police fired tear gas to disperse some of the protesters who are focused on ending President Omar al-Bashir's three decades in office.

Last week, he dissolved the government and declared a state of emergency, giving the armed forces more power.

Dozens of people have been shot dead since the protests began in December.

More on Sudan:

What's it like being a female protester in Sudan?

Three women tell of beatings they've witnessed and their belief women are being targeted
Sudan's President Omar Hassan al-Bashir has declared a state of emergency in an attempt to end a 10-week uprising that has threatened to bring an end to his 30 years in power.

Samar, Sara and Dallia have all been taking part in the protests against the Sudanese government. 

But they say women protesters are treated particularly harshly; and they believe they are more likely to be targeted. 

They tell us stories of seeing women being violently beaten. But they add they are determined to keep protesting.  

The government denies using disproportionate force against protesters.

(Photo: Sudanese protesters, February 14, 2019.  Credit: Getty Images)