On this day three years ago, hundreds of thousands of Sudanese people embarked on a peaceful sit-in, demanding the opportunity to shape their country’s destiny. The sit-in included Sudanese from all walks of life and all parts of the country: doctors and farmers, women and youth, people hailing from different backgrounds and speaking different languages. Sudan’s peaceful protesters inspired the world with their courage and sacrifice. The United States shared their joy as Sudan began the difficult process of transitioning to democracy. We later came to share their disappointment and sorrow when the Sudanese military disrupted that transition last October.
The ongoing Sudanese-led political process – facilitated by the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission for Sudan, the African Union, and Intergovernmental Authority for Development and supported by Sudan’s friends – offers the best opportunity to restore a path to democracy. What that democracy looks like is for the Sudanese people to determine, but they have been clear in its core tenets: it must be civilian-led and provide justice, prosperity, and peace. The United States stand ready to resume paused assistance once a credible civilian-led government is in place.
Pro-democracy protests continue to this day, as the Sudanese people have yet to realize their goal. Peaceful protests must be allowed to continue without fear of violence. We reiterate our condemnation of the use of any violence against peaceful protesters and call on the security services to keep their word and hold accountable those responsible for abuses.
The United States remains steadfast in its support for the Sudanese people and their quest for democracy. We will continue to add our voice to bolster theirs and take action to assist them in creating a peaceful, democratic Sudan.