(Adds details and background)
KHARTOUM May 5 Riot police fired tear gas at
dozens of Sudanese students protesting against President Omar
Hassan al-Bashir on Monday, witnesses said.
The protest outside the University of Khartoum was prompted
by clashes between student supporters and opponents of Bashir.
One student died in March during a similar protest at which the
police used tear gas and batons.
Islamist leader Bashir has stayed in power for over two
decades despite armed rebellions, U.S. trade sanctions, an
economic crisis, an attempted coup and an indictment from the
International Criminal Court on charges of masterminding war
crimes in the troubled region of Darfur.
The students chanted "our university will always be free,"
and "no, no to the merchants of religion," during their
demonstration, which was dispersed within minutes by the
The protest was one of several organised by the Khartoum
University students since March. It was the first since the
university's resumption two weeks ago of classes which were
suspended after the March protests.
Bashir's regime faces a deteriorating economy with a sharp
drop in oil revenues, the main source of government income, and
rising inflation after losing most of his active oilfields with
the secession of South Sudan in 2011.
His government's decision to cut subsidies and take other
austerity measures last September prompted the worst wave of
street protests in years, leaving dozens dead and hundreds
(Reporting by Khalid Abdel Aziz; Writing by Yasmine Saleh;
Editing by Andrew Roche)