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Menendez Statement on Sudanese Forces Opening Fire on Protesters in Khartoum

WASHINGTON– U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today issued the following statement in response to violence in Khartoum, Sudan, where security forces stormed a pro-democracy protest on Monday, reportedly killing at least 30 people.

“I strongly condemn the disproportionate use of force by Sudanese security forces in today’s military raid against peaceful protestors.  The disturbing images depicting the chaos in Khartoum show there is no rationale for using live ammunition against fellow citizens peacefully exercising their basic right to advocate in support of a transition to democratic governance.”

“With the African Union deadline for the military council to hand over power quickly approaching, I call upon the leaders of the Transitional Military Council to stop the assault on protesters, ensure security forces exercise restraint, hold accountable those responsible for excessive use of force, and immediately restart negotiations for a handover to civilian rule.”

“The United States must stand firmly behind the Sudanese people’s aspirations for a democratic government that respects political freedoms and human rights for all citizens. There is an urgent need to use all the diplomatic tools at our disposal to support this once in a generation opportunity for democratic change in Sudan, and ensure that our partners with interests in Sudan support these efforts.”