Sudan's Bashir says protests will not lead to change in government

KHARTOUM, Jan 14 (Reuters) - Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir reiterated on Monday that he would not step down after weeks of violent protests and calls for him to quit over a worsening economic crisis.

Protests have rippled across Sudan since Dec. 19 in the most sustained challenge yet to Bashir’s close to 30-year rule. Security forces have used live ammunition to disperse demonstrations. The official death toll stands at 24. Amnesty International has said that at least 40 people have been killed.

“The government does not change through demonstrations,” Bashir said, speaking to supporters in Nyala, the main city in South Darfur, a day after protesters demonstrated there for the first time.

“We said we have an economic problem and it is not solved via vandalism,” he said. (Reporting by Khalid Abdelaziz Writing by Lena Masri Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky)