Protesters in Leeds
Iain Dalton, Leeds Socialist Party
Chanting “down, down, Al-Burhan”, over 100 people from Leeds’ Sudanese community rallied on 13 November in support of the mass protests taking place on the same day in Sudan. The protest condemned the military coup led by Al-Burhan, right-hand man of the former dictator, Al-Bashir, whose 30-year rule was overthrown in 2018 by mass struggles.
The protesters welcomed the support of a Leeds Labour councillor, Abigail Marshall Katung, to the protest. However, she asked protesters to put their faith in British MPs persuading the military that they should go back on their ‘illegal’ coup, as well as encouraging protesters to keep “peace and reconciliation” as their goal.
I spoke on behalf of the Socialist Party at the demo, pointing out there can be no reconciliation with the tops of the military, who carried out the coup and were ordering the killing of protesters in Sudan as our event was taking place.
To overthrow the coup leaders requires deepening the current resistance to the coup. This includes rebuilding and linking up the Neighbourhood Defence Committees and others, such as those of workers striking against the military regime. An appeal to rank-and-file soldiers, and replacing the coup leaders with a revolutionary government of workers and the poor, is also necessary.
After I spoke, the organisers thanked the Socialist Party for our ongoing support of the protests. Many on the protest took copies of our leaflet outlining the lessons of the 2018-19 movement that brought down Al-Bashir, and a programme to take the struggle forward today.
- Read ‘Sudan – mass protests and general strike against coup’ at socialistparty.org.uk