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Global powers condemn Sudan military coup

Global powers have condemned a military coup in Sudan and called on security forces to release those who were detained unlawfully.

On Monday the U.S. State Department released a joint statement cosigned by the UK and Norway.

A department spokesperson added it was pausing $700 million in economic aid to Sudan, after the country’s military seized power from a transitional government earlier in the day.

Clashes broke out Monday between soldiers and street protesters.

A health official said several people were killed by gunfire.

Al-Tayeb Mohamed Ahmed was among a crowd of young people who barricaded streets in protest.

"They fired stun grenades, then they fired live ammunition, two people died, I saw them with my own eyes. Then they came back twice and killed one more, this is the third one I saw."

Sudan had been on edge since a failed coup plot only a month before.

Military and civilian groups have been sharing power following the toppling of autocrat leader Omar al-Bashir two years ago.

The military was meant to hand over power to an elected figure in the coming months.

But on Monday, coup leader General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan dissolved the Sovereign Council, declared a state of emergency and promised to hand over power to an elected body in 2023.

"We’re stressing here that the armed forces intend to complete the democratic transition, until the country’s leadership is handed over to an elected civilian government who can bring these issues to life.”

Sudan's information ministry said on Facebook that the transitional constitution only allows ousted Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok to declare a state of emergency and called the military’s actions a crime.

The ministry says Hamdok was detained in an undisclosed location after refusing to support the takeover.

Troops also arrested civilian members of the Sovereign Council, government officials, and the state TV news director, according to his family.

Diplomats said the UN Security Council was likely to discuss Sudan behind closed doors on Tuesday.

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