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Sudan: The Country of a Million Crises - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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It does not matter who is trying to ignite the Sudanese robe by relighting the match; what’s more important than all of this is that Sudan in its entirety today is under threat. Some might say that this threat hanging over Sudan is not new, and this is the [real] crisis, for the crises in Sudan have given rise to successive crises.

Going into the details of the demands of the Sudanese opposition or parties, whether they are in the north or the south, will not add or take anything away from the facts on the ground. The most important thing that happened in Sudan recently was everybody – internally and externally – united against the Sudanese government. This is something that demonstrates the difficulties that will be seen in Sudan in the coming days, and is evidence of the mismanagement of the Sudanese crisis by the regime.

Externally, there is the international tribunal, and just days ago [ICC prosecutor] Luis-Moreno Ocampo vowed to prosecute Darfur war criminals and those that cover up for them, while the northern and southern Sudanese held demonstrations that the regime described as illegal, as they had not been authorized. It is strange that this regime calls for the licensing of demonstrations today when it previously said that the days of demonstrations that swept Sudan following the International Criminal Court’s decision to prosecute the Sudanese President were spontaneous!

This talk, of course, is not in support of the demonstrations that took place on Monday, or support for what was said about arranging a demonstration with a million participants, as the demonstrators’ demand, which was described as the memorandum of the banned rally, is an impossible issue now, even if it is legitimate, because such demands mean a new Sudanese agreement.

Unfortunately what we see today in Sudan is nothing more than [the regime] clinging onto power, and the fear that the temple will collapse upon those inside it. The south is on the path to secession, and there are those who say that secession has already taken place and has not been announced. There is also the crisis in Darfur, and the external implications that this has on the Sudanese regime, not to mention the suffering of the innocent. There is also the conflict between yesterday’s allies within the ruling regime itself, and of course the victim of all of this is Sudan and its people.

Therefore we say that the crises in Sudan have begun to give birth to other crises, and the reason for this is poor management by the Sudanese regime, and its clinging onto power even if this results in the division of the country, the breakup of its cohesion, and its exposure to overwhelming risk. Therefore even if the [Sudanese] opposition – in all its forms – was successful at overthrowing the ruling regime in Sudan, which according to some of the regime’s supporters was the true purpose behind these demonstrations whose demands were not the implementation of what has been agreed upon so much as the overthrowing of the ruling regime, this still will not lead to the improvement of conditions for Sudan; coups and overthrowing presidents or regimes will not bring anything new to Sudan, and will only increase the complexity of the situation there.

The upshot of this is that Sudan is more important than the ruling regime and Sudan’s stability and security is more important than those who have ambitions to rule. Unfortunately the competitors today in Sudan are competing for the leftovers of the state, and not a strong coherent [united] state. Therefore the language of reason and putting the interests of the country has failed, especially at the hands of the al-Bashir regime, and so we are waiting for another Arab crisis in a country that previously was considered to be the breadbasket of the Arab world.

Tariq Alhomayed

Tariq Alhomayed

Tariq Alhomayed is the former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat. Mr. Alhomyed has been a guest analyst and commentator on numerous news and current affair programs, and during his distinguished career has held numerous positions at Asharq Al-Awsat, amongst other newspapers. Notably, he was the first journalist to interview Osama Bin Ladin's mother. Mr. Alhomayed holds a bachelor's degree in media studies from King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah. He is based in London.

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