Violent protests continued nationwide for the fifth consecutive day on Sunday, December 23. The Sudanese Armed Forces were deployed into several cities throughout the country, including the capital Khartoum, on Friday, December 21, in response to the protests. Between December 19-23, hundreds of protesters gathered in major urban centers - notably in Atbara (Nile River state), Al-Qadarif (Al-Qadarif state), Port Sudan (Red Sea state), and Khartoum - to demand increased government transparency and the implementation of anti-inflation measures. Police forces reportedly used tear gas and live ammunition to disperse the protesters. Curfews are currently in place in eight cities, including in Kosti and Rabak (White Nile state), Al-Qadarif (Al-Qadarif state), Atbara, Al-Damir, and Berber (all River Nile state) from 18.00 to 06.00 (all times local), as well as in Dongola and Karima (Northern state) from 19.30 to 06.00. Furthermore, doctors plans to launch an indefinite strike from Monday, December 24. Further protests and associated incidents of violence are possible in the coming days and weeks despite the heightened security measures.
Cities throughout Sudan, including Atbara, Khartoum, Kassala, and Port Sudan, have been experiencing bread, fuel, and cash shortages. The current shortages come as the economy continues to suffer from surging inflation, which reached 68.93 percent in November. Various protests have taken place in Sudanese cities since early January due to price hikes, notably in Khartoum, Khartoum North, and Omdurman. The government has begun to implement a number of broad-based economic reforms in line with recommendations from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in an attempt to stabilize the economy and foster growth. For example, on October 7, the government ordered the devaluation of the Sudanese pound compared to the US dollar, the third such devaluation since early 2018; the exchange rate is now SDG 47.6 to USD 1, compared to SDG 6.7 to USD 1 in 2017.
Individuals in Sudan are advised to monitor the situation, obey all instructions issued by the local authorities (including curfew orders), and avoid all protests as a precaution.
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