The death toll in Sudan’s anti-government protests has risen to 29 people, the government says.

Sudanese protesters have been taking part in a rally against the Sudanese government of President Omar al-Bashir for weeks. The death toll in the monthlong protests rose to at least 29 people on Thursday in Sudan, states the official statement.

Three people were killed in protests in Sudan on Thursday, bringing the death toll in the monthlong demonstrations to 29.

THE BIG PICTURE: Sudan may be facing the mass protests that had rocked the Arab countries in the 2010s such as Tunisia, Egypt, etc, which were dubbed as “Arab spring“. Anti-government protests that have rocked Sudan since 19 December 2018 have left 29 people dead. Demonstrations that erupted last month after the government tripled the price of bread have escalated into nationwide anti-government protests, with calls for President Omar al-Bashir to step down.

“The total number of people who have died from December 19 until now is 29,” Amer Mohamed Ibrahim, head of the government fact-finding committee told reporters in Khartoum.

The government also confirmed a 24-year-old man was killed during the protests.

While the official death toll stands at 29, rights groups have placed the total at more than 40.

Journalist Zeinab Mohammed Salih told the BBC that Thursday was one of the biggest days of protests since they began.

The UPI reports that the Sudanese Professionals Association, an umbrella group of doctors, engineers, and teachers coordinating the protests said demonstrations have been held in at least 50 places around Sudan.

The BBC reported that riot police have used tear gas to control the crowds in several neighborhoods in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, and to break up large rallies in other areas.

Doctors taking part in the protests have been increasingly targeted by security forces due to their high profiles and the active role some have taken in organizing the demonstrations.

Over time the focus has shifted to removing President Omar al-Bashir from office.

International Union for Muslim Scholars urges Sudan to protect ‘peaceful protests’.

The International Union for Muslim Scholars (IUMS) has called on the Sudanese government to protect the right for peaceful expression and refrain from attacking protesters.

THE BOTTOM LINE: Even if Bashir, who came to power in a military coup backed by Islamists in 1989, has remained defiant amid fears of unrest in the country, protests in the country are gaining momentum, backed by the Muslim World and the West. Rights activists have been calling on the Sudanese government not to use maximum forces against protesters.

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