The Sudanese military briefly arrested the chairman of the State of Law and Development Party yesterday, hours after he warned the UAE against interfering in Sudan’s revolution.
Mohamed Ali Al-Jazouli, who also heads the country’s One Nation movement, was detained by the military after a press conference led by the National Front for Change (NFC) in which he slammed any attempted involvement from the Emirati government.
In other statements, he also warned against the exclusion of Islamist parties, stressing that the move would be of detriment to society and prolong the reign of the military.
His arrest prompted the NFC to release a statement calling for his release: “We condemn this behaviour which took place in the post-Ingaz area of repression and suppression of freedoms and opinion,” it said, referring to the military regime that participated in the country’s civil war in the 1990s.
Al-Jazouli was released last night from the presidential palace, having been transferred there from Kobar prison. Whilst he was not charged, his arrest marks the first politically motivated detention since the ousting of Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir.
In a statement after his release, the controversial Islamist leader said that the authorities had apologised to him, acknowledging he was wrongly arrested. However, he went on to reiterate the current political changes in the country were to be determined by the people.
“The Sudanese revolution belongs to the Sudanese people of all intellectual streams and political schools, and not for the transitional military council,” he said on Facebook. “This is a swap for the seats of the unjust and the oppressed, and not for peace and justice; this is not the end of the people’s revolution.”
Al-Jazouli was arrested multiple times during the term of President Al-Bashir, accused of supporting various jihadi groups. Last year he was imprisoned for refusing to nominate Al-Bashir in the 2020 presidential election but was released this month after the autocrat was ousted.
As protests against military rule continue across the country, some demonstrators have held banners rejecting the involvement of foreign nations, specifying the UAE and Saudi Arabia. Fear that the two Gulf states will attempt to influence the political process in the country and seek to install an equivalent to Egypt’s General-turned-President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi.
Last week, a Saudi-Emirati delegation arrived in Khartoum to express support for the country’s Transitional Military Council.
Council President Lieutenant General Abdul Fattah Burhan welcomed the Gulf delegation, with the state news agency reporting that the ministers conveyed “the greetings of the leaders of the two countries and their readiness to support Sudan and its people at this important historic stage.”
Burhan hailed Sudan’s “special relationship” with the two Arab states, with Saudi officials reportedly offering to supply emergency basic commodities such as food and petrol.