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Sudan's Prime Minister survives assassination attempt

SUDANESE Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok survived an assassination attempt today when a bomb went off in the capital Khartoum close to a convoy that he was travelling in.

He was making his way to the Cabinet office at the time, according to state television. Footage showed one badly damaged vehicle and two of the SUVs used by government officials with their windows broken.

Mr Hamdok’s office confirmed that he had not been injured in the attack, adding that he had been taken to “a safe place.”

Officials described the bombing as a “terrorist attack,” although  no-one claimed responsibility. Some people voiced suspicions that supporters of ousted former president Omar al-Bashir were behind it.

The authoritarian Islamist leader was forced to step down last April after months of protest against his rule. He is currently in jail and faces a lengthy sentence on a string of corruption charges and for ordering the killing of demonstrators during last year’s unrest.

Mr Hamdok, who heads a joint military-civilian transitional government, agreed in February to hand over Mr Bashir and other former officials to the International Criminal Court, which wants to prosecute them for war crimes and genocide in connection with the conflict in Sudan’s Darfur region in the 2000s.

A statement from the Forces for the Declaration of Freedom and Change, the movement that led the uprising that ousted Mr Bashir, condemned the “terrorist attack” and called on people to take to the streets to “show our unity and cohesion … and protect the transitional authority.”

Sudanese Congress Party leader Khalid Omar warned of “a new chapter in the conspiracy against the Sudanese revolution.”

The transitional government is due to remain in place for three years to facilitate the establishment of civilian rule.

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