January 3, 2011 (KHARTOUM) – Sudan’s intelligence chief has divulged details of an alleged coordination between some opposition and rebel groups to overthrow the government through a merger of armed and civil strife, accusing the Islamist leader Hassan Al-Turabi of being its figurehead.
Speaking at a meeting with political parties allied with the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) in the capital Khartoum on Tuesday, the intelligence chief, Mohamed Atta, claimed that the security apparatus had laid their hand on evidences linking opposition groups, particularly Al-Turabi’s Popular Congress Party (PCP), to the Sudanese Revolutionary Forces (SRF), an alliance of armed rebels fighting to overthrow the government.
Atta said that scenarios written by Al-Turabi himself on ways of toppling the government were caught in the possession of his senior aide, Ibrahim al-Sanousi, who was arrested in December upon his return from a visit to the Republic of South Sudan and Uganda, where most SRF leaders are based.
The top security official alleged that in his written scenarios, Al-Turabi proposed two possibilities for toppling the government, the first being a military coup but he inserted a caveat saying that such a move would face obstacles because it is widely unacceptable. The second option Al-Turabi proposed, according to Atta, is a popular uprising but the opposition figure warned that such revolt might not occur in the short run.
Sudanese authorities arrested Al-Turabi in June last year after he warned in an interview that Sudan is likely to experience a revolt modeled on the Arab Spring should the government continues to resist reforms. He was released three months later without charges.
In his address, Atta accused the opposition coalition National Consensus Forces (NCF), which includes the PCP, of having contacts with the SRF, which includes the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N), two factions of Darfur group, the Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM).
These contacts were conducted through the NCF’s chairman Farouq Abu Isa, said Atta.
Atta went on to accuse opposition groups of hypocrisy, saying that they claim to be patriotic but they have no qualms about executing foreign agendas in the pursuit of taking power.
The SRF, whose factions are fighting the Sudanese government in the country’s peripheries, on Sunday called on opposition groups to complement its armed struggle with a popular uprising in the center.
This call, which was made in the form of an open letter, is likely to draw the ire of the NCP which propagates claims that the SRF is a proxy group supported by South Sudan.
Atta said that the opposition’s chances of creating an Arab Spring in Sudan were now more minimal than ever after the formation of the broad-base government in which the NCP managed to include the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and the son of Al-Sadiq al-Mahdi, leader of the opposition National Umma Party (NUP).