Sudan opposition rejects army's offer of talks, death toll hits 108

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On the heels of Monday's brutal and bloody crackdown on protesters in Khartoum, the African Union (AU) has suspended Sudan's membership and threatened its leaders with sanctions for failing to hand over power to a civilian-led government.

The raid, which followed weeks of wrangling between the ruling military council and opposition groups over who should lead Sudan's transition to democracy, marked the worst outbreak of violence since the army ousted President Omar al-Bashir in April after months of protests against his rule.

The opposition said it would accept his mediation if the military council took responsibility for Monday's violence, an global investigation was launched, and political prisoners were freed.

Meeting in Ethiopia's capital, Addis Ababa, the AU's peace and security council invoked its response to interruptions of constitutional rule by suspending Sudan.

They also said "outlaws" have attacked and tried to set fire to police stations in various parts of the country, posing a threat to Sudan's stability.

Members of Sudan's security forces patrol as Muslim worshippers attend Eid al-Fitr prayers.

The Transitional Military Council canceled all agreements it had reached with the opposition immediately after the raid but on Wednesday it rowed back amid mounting global criticism of the violence.

"We will not allow chaos. we must impose the authority of the state through law", Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, deputy chief of the military council, told his forces in a televised address.

France called for the "resumption of dialogue" between the military committee and the opposition so that an "inclusive agreement is quickly found".

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"The United States remains firmly committed to working with the people of Sudan along with our worldwide partners, in pursuit of a peaceful solution in Sudan", she said.

"The death toll rose to 113, including four in Port Sudan and one in Khartoum, due to the bullets of the Cancavit militias and the Transitional Military Council (TMC)", Anadolu Agency quoted the committee as saying.

Earlier on Wednesday, TMC leader Abdel Fattah Burhan said in a televised speech that the military council was "ready for negotiations with the other parties without any conditions".

The young soldier who had stopped and searched his auto on the streets of Khartoum earlier this week suddenly grabbed a shock of his hair, drew a combat knife, and sheared it off. The protesters demanded civilians dominate the council, which the generals resisted.

It urged an "indefinite strike and civil disobedience", warning against calls for violence.

The protests have since spread across the country and resulted in the coup that ended al-Bashir's 30-year-rule and then forced the coup leader Gen Ibn Auf to step down himself. It says Monday's raid was targeting criminals in an area next to the camp but got out of hand. And though the continental bloc may lack powers to punish more, its association with global powers like the UK, US and China, may send a signal to the UN Security Council to further isolate an errant member. The motives for the general's apparent reversal - if honest - were not immediately clear.

He says "this call is not serious" because "Burhan and those under him have killed the Sudanese and are still doing it".

"I think this outbreak of violence has caused them to bring this forward", said Elissa Jobson, head of Africa regional advocacy for the International Crisis Group (ICG) think tank. On Tuesday, the protestors rejected the military's offer for talks and accused it of carrying out a massacre.

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