Sudan's former president Omar al-Bashir charged with corruption in first appearance since removal from power

Prosecutors accuse him of ‘accepting gifts in an unofficial manner’

Adam Forrest
Sunday 16 June 2019 19:35 BST
Omar al-Bashir leaves anti-corruption prosecutor's office in Khartoum
Omar al-Bashir leaves anti-corruption prosecutor's office in Khartoum (Reuters)

Sudan’s former president Omar al-Bashir was charged with corruption-related offences on Sunday, as he appeared in public for the first time since he was overthrown in April.

Looking much the same as prior to his removal, Mr Bashir was taken to the prosecutor’s office in the capital Khartoum, smiling and speaking with the guards escorting him.

Minutes later he walked out scowling after prosecutors read out the charges he faces.

Prosecutor Alaa al-Din Abdallah told reporters the former leader was “accused of possession of foreign currency, accepting gifts in an unofficial manner”.

He also said Mr Bashir had been given a chance to respond to the charges. The former president’s lawyers declined to answer reporters’ questions.

The military overthrew and detained Mr Bashir on 11 April after 16 weeks of street protests against his 30-year rule. He was being held in prison in Khartoum North, across the Blue Nile from the capital’s centre.

After his removal the military and protest leaders attempted to negotiate the make-up of a transitional council meant to run the country for the next three years, prior to fresh elections.

Yet negotiations completely collapsed following the deadly raids on a protest camp outside the military headquarters in Khartoum on 3 June.

The military announced it would unilaterally form an interim government and hold elections within just nine months.

Last Sunday the opposition organised a general strike in protest at the crackdown by security forces.

Additional reporting by Reuters

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