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Sudan Leader Faces Crisis After Generals Refuse to Back Him

From Reuters

The nation’s leaders held emergency meetings Wednesday after army generals rejected the prime minister’s pleas for support, apparently leaving him little choice but to resign.

With troops on alert throughout the country, members of Sudan’s five-member collective presidency--the Supreme Council--were meeting with political leaders to solve the crisis, sources said.

On Monday, Prime Minister Sadek Mahdi had threatened to resign next Sunday unless the army allowed him to form a broad-based government and assured him it would continue to respect the constitution.

The day after his statement, the generals insisted that their demand for reforms, given to Mahdi nine days ago, be carried out in full.

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In their earlier ultimatum, the officers told Mahdi that he should either spend more money on defense or accept a pact drawn up between rebels and the Democratic Unionist Party to end the five-year-old civil war in the south.

Mahdi has also asked trade unions, whose frequent work stoppages have plagued his 33 months in office, to freeze strikes so long as the war with the rebels continued.

But 37 trade unions and political parties have rejected Mahdi’s request.


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