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Monday, 22 November 2021

Hamdok’s return fails to quell protests in Sudan

Hamdok’s return has so far failed to quell protests in Sudan: Pro-democracy protesters in Khartoum aren’t satisfied with military chief Abdel Fattah Al Burhan’s decision to reinstate ousted Sudanese civilian prime minister Abdalla Hamdok from office. Some have instead returned to the streets demanding an end to military rule after the military seized control last month. Burhan yesterday signed a pact with Hamdok to return the latter to office after a month under house arrest. The story is everywhere from Bloomberg and CNBC to CNN and the AP by way of just about every major global media outlet in between.

Egypt welcomed the agreement, with the Foreign MInistry expressing hope that Hamdok’s return to government would bring a return to stability in Sudan.

A play for the AU? The agreement to bring Hamdok back into the fold was signed on the same day that Burhan made an appeal to the African Union to end its suspension. Burhan made the request in a meeting with DRC foreign minister and AU envoy Christophe Lutundula. The AU has suspended Sudan until the military hands power back to civilian authorities.

Also on the agenda: GERD. Burhan and Lutundula discussed the dispute over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), Asharq reports, citing unnamed sources.

Lutundula is now heading to Egypt to discuss the GERD with President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, Asharq’s sources said. We imagine that the two will also discuss Sudan’s restoration to the AU, which Egypt has reportedly been lobbying for behind the scenes.

MEANWHILE, IN LIBYA-

Libya’s interim prime minister has joined the presidential race: Abdul Hamid Dbeibah yesterday filed his papers to run in Libya’s presidential election next month, complicating further an already fraught process being framed by disputed election rules and divisive candidates. Dbeibah’s fast-and-loose approach to public spending is likely to make him the frontrunner in any ballot, but contested rules passed by the House of Representatives that require a sitting PM to step down three months prior to an election technically ban him from running. The country’s electoral commission and courts will determine which candidates are eligible to stand in the coming weeks. Other candidates to have entered the race include: Colonel Gaddafi’s son Saif, and eastern strongman Khalifa Haftar, who until last year was waging a military offensive against the western half of the country. Reuters and Bloomberg have more.

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