BBC’s Africa Editor on Sudan’s Show and Tell

“It must have seemed like a good idea to somebody, although I cannot imagine why. The plan was to show us how terribly the protesters had behaved. If the world could see what they were really like they would understand that the regime had no choice but to send in the militia. The health ministry minder told us to follow him so that we could see the ransacked laboratory: smashed sample tubes and more scattered files. The spokesman for the ministry, Hassan Abudulla, said this had all been the work of the protesters. They had broken in and destroyed equipment. He seemed to me to be speaking from a pre-prepared script. Our tour moved on to a medical warehouse where rows of medicines were stacked, many marked with the word “Release”. This was to show us that contrary to opposition claims the militia was not preventing the distribution of badly needed medicines. Next stop was Omdurman, across the Nile and past yet more jeeploads of militia bristling with guns and rocket propelled grenades. The RSF looks more like an army of occupation than an internal security force. There was a brief surge of hope when the African Union suspended Sudan last week and Mr Abiy set out on his mediation mission. But the generals have held their nerve. In particular, the commander of the RSF, Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo – known as “Hemeti” – is thought to be pushing a hard line, confident that he has the support of key regional players in Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.”SOURCE: BBC

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