Sudan's junta allows Russia 'Victory Day' celebrations despite crackdown on protesters
Sudanese and Russian expatriates rallied outside Moscow's embassy in Sudan's capital last week to celebrate Russian Victory Day, despite authorities' violent crackdown on pro-democracy protesters in the country.
Dozens on Friday marched through Khartoum to mark Russia's victory over Nazi Germany, the first time the event has been celebrated in Sudan.
It comes amid international outrage over Russia's unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, which has led to sanctions on Moscow by dozens of countries, including the US.
Sudanese activists circulated videos showing the march with people carrying Russian flags on Friday, as the African country continues its crackdown on civil rights protesters.
روسيا يا أخت بلادي ولا شنو 😂 pic.twitter.com/mKlY9XWWqp— الربييـع ڪِنان • ™FPL (@Rabei_kanan_FPL) May 6, 2022
The Russian embassy in Sudan said this is the first time Sudan commemorates Russian Victory Day.
Sudan has witnessed a new rapprochement with Russia since the visit of Vice-President of the Sovereign Council Mohamed Hamdan Hemedti to Russia last February. He was accompanied by a delegation that included the ministers of finance, energy and oil, where they met a number of Russian officials including Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
However, at home in Sudan, there has been a surge in violence against protesters with dozens killed in brutal crackdowns.
On 25 October, the Sudanese military - led by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan - dissolved the country’s transitional government and placed former Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok under house arrest.
Since then, thousands have been injured as part of an ongoing crackdown on anti-coup demonstrations across the country.
The UN said in December that it found reports of sexual assault and rape of anti-coup protesters by Sudan's military "deeply disturbing", and urged that they be investigated.