Conflicts & War

Al-Bashir’s trial over 1989 coup begins

By Al Nur al Zaki

Khartoum, Oct 6 (efe-epa).- The trial of former Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir over a 1989 coup that led him to take power began on Tuesday with the public prosecutor reading the charges against 28 defendants and several of their lawyers leaving the court.

The trial started with the indictment being read in full by Sudanese attorney general Taj al Sir al Hibr and with al-Bashir himself in the first line of the dock.

Sir al Hibr said there are “evidence, documents, confessions and video recordings of civilian and military leaders on the planning and implementation of the coup”.

He also referred to the circumstances of the 1989 coup by saying “the Islamic Front infiltrated the armed forces, ended a democratic system and blocked the peaceful transfer of power”.

His remarks angered the defense attorneys, some of whom left the courtroom and the trial was postponed to 20 October.

Since the legal process against al-Bashir began on 21 July, five sessions have been suspended over procedural incidents and defense objections from the ex-dictator to find an “adequate and ample place” amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The session was held at the Forensic Evidence room of Khartoum’s Police Training Center.

The 28 defendants, including al-Bashir, arrived at the court’s headquarters by two buses, under heavy guard.

Twenty cars carrying dozens of military police escorted the buses, with guns attached to three of them.

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