Though the countrywide demonstrations entered its sixth day on Monday, the army pledged to stand by President Omar Bashir.

In this Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018 handout image provided by a Sudanese activist, people chant slogans during a protest in Kordofan, Sudan.
In this Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018 handout image provided by a Sudanese activist, people chant slogans during a protest in Kordofan, Sudan. (AP)

The protests erupted on December 19 in the city of Atbara, in Nile River state in northeastern Sudan.

The demonstrations broke out over an increase in the price of bread to 3 pounds from 1 pound because of the lack of subsidised flour in the state.

At least 12 demonstrators are already dead and several dozen have been injured in police firing, according official and witnesses.

However, leading Sudanese opposition figure Sadiq al-Mahdi claims the death toll has reached to 22.

Here is a quick recap on what happened in the country last week. 

23 December

Sudan’s military pledged to stand by President Omar Bashir, according to a tweet by the country’s state news agency, a timely show of support as the embattled leader faces ongoing street protests decrying worsening economic conditions and demanding that he step down.

“The armed forces assert that it stands behind its leadership and its keen interest in safeguarding the people’s achievements and the nation’s security, safety along with its blood, honor and assets,” said the tweet, quoting a military statement.

Sudan's doctors will go on an indefinite strike in the first of a series of work stoppages amid protests calling on the country's long-time leader, President Omar al Bashir, to step down, an umbrella coalition of professional unions said on Sunday.

In a statement, it said the doctors will continue to deal with emergencies during the strike, which begins Monday and aims to "paralyse" the government and deny it much-needed revenues. 

The coalition also called on citizens to continue their street protests, which entered their fifth day Sunday, according to activists, with demonstrations in several cities.

22 December

Sudanese authorities arrested 14 leaders of an opposition coalition on Saturday, a spokesman for the grouping said.

Farouk Abu Issa, the 85-year-old head of the National Consensus Forces, one of the country's two main opposition parties, was among those detained after an opposition meeting in the capital Khartoum, said spokesman Sadiq Youssef.

"We demand their immediate release, and their arrest is an attempt by the regime to stop the street movements," Youssef said, adding that Abu Issa was in poor health and had been transferred to hospital after his detention

21 December

Some of the demonstrators chanted: “The people want the fall of the regime”- a slogan used in the “Arab Spring” protests.

As the number of Sudanese protesters are swelling with each passing day, filling up the streets of several towns and cities, including the capital Khartoum, the anger on the ground refuses of subside with people using social media to keep the momentum going. 

Eight demonstrators are already dead and several dozen have been injured in police firing, according official statement by the government spokesperson.

There were some claims about Sudanese secret service, the Mukhabarat, targeting the protestors.

People on the ground tweeted about shutting down of mobile internet in the country on Friday.The government has made several attempts to shut down Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, together with messaging application Whatsapp.

States of emergency and curfews were announced in more states on Friday.

20 December

Sudan demonstrations have spread to the capital city Khartoum, while the police shot dead eight demonstrators and injured dozens more in the eastern city of Gadarif.

Dozens protested against price increases in the cities of Dongola and al Gadarif on Thursday, eyewitnesses said.

The toll included a university student whose death during demonstrations in Al Qadarif had been reported earlier in the day.

Protesters have vandalised several public properties as part of a series of demonstrations.

19 December

Prime Minister Motazz Moussa said Sudan's 2019 budget included 66 billion Sudanese pounds ($1.39 billion) in subsidies, 53 billion of which is for fuel and bread on earlier Wednesday.

Hundreds of people torched the ruling party's headquarters in Atbara city to protest against the rise in bread prices.

While small rallies have broken out in other cities, the demonstrations were larger in Atbara, which is historically a hotbed for anti-government protests.

Port Sudan, the capital of Red Sea state, reportedly also saw limited protests.

The Sudanese government declared a state of emergency and curfew, between 6:00 pm to 6:00 am, on Wednesday in Atbara city, which is a five-hour long drive from the capital city of Khartoum. 

"The state’s security committee held a meeting on the events and announced a state of emergency and imposed a curfew in the city of Atbara until further notice," Ibrahim Mukhtar, a spokesman for the state government, told the local Ashorooq TV channel.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies