Officials say military officers and civilians linked to ousted regime of longtime president Omar al Bashir tried to unseat PM Abdalla Hamdok in a failed coup against the transitional government.

Sudan's PM Abdalla Hamdok is the first civilian in decades to run the government.
Sudan's PM Abdalla Hamdok is the first civilian in decades to run the government. (AP)

Sudan's fragile transitional government has said it foiled an attempted coup involving military officers and civilians linked to the ousted regime of longtime president Omar al Bashir. 

Information Minister Hamza Baloul said the coup attempt early on Tuesday was thwarted and those behind it "brought under control".

"We assure the Sudanese people that order has been restored and the leaders of the attempted coup, both military and civilian, have been arrested and are being investigated," he said in a televised address.

"Authorities are pursuing supporters of the defunct regime who participated in the coup attempt."

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'Coup laboratory'

The plotters had attempted to take over the state media building but "failed" and the officers involved were "immediately suspended," government officials said. 

Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok has said the coup was organised by elements inside and outside the military establishment. 

The failed attempt was preceded by attempts to sow insecurity, especially in the east of Sudan, but had failed to undermine the country's democratic transition, he said. 

The development underscored the fragility of Sudan's path to democracy, more than two years after the military's overthrow of longtime autocrat Bashir amid a public uprising against his three-decade rule.

Sudan often referred to as a "coup laboratory" has faced 15 attempts to overthrow the government since its independence in 1956. 

State television broadcast patriotic songs as it announced the coup attempt and urged "the people to confront it". 

The cabinet said, "all those involved in the attempt have been detained". 

Traffic appeared to be flowing smoothly in central Khartoum, AFP news agency reported, including around army headquarters, where protesters staged a months-long sit-in that eventually led to Bashir's overthrow in a palace coup by the army in 2019.

Security forces did however close the main bridge across the White Nile connecting Khartoum to its twin city Omdurman.

A well-planned move

PM Hamdok said the coup attempt was the "latest manifestation of the national crisis". 

The plotters "made extensive preparations, which were showcased in the security breakdown in cities ... blocking of national roads, closure of ports, and persistent instigation against the civilian government," he said in a televised speech.

Demonstrators have since Friday blocked key roads as well as the country's main trade hub, Port Sudan, to protest a peace deal the transitional government signed with rebel groups last year. 

There have been previous coup attempts since Bashir's ouster which officials have blamed on supporters of the former president and members of his now-defunct ruling party. 

Since his ouster, the ex-president has been kept in Khartoum's high-security Kober prison and is facing trial over the coup which brought him to power.

He is also wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide for his prosecution of a deadly scorched-earth campaign against ethnic minority rebels in Darfur. 

In an address to troops on Tuesday, powerful paramilitary commander Mohamed Hamdan Daglo said: "We will not allow a coup to take place.

"We want real democratic transition through free and fair elections, not like in the past," said the commander, widely known as Hemeti.

Under an August 2019 power-sharing deal, Sudan is ruled by a transitional government composed of both civilian and military representatives and tasked with overseeing a return to full civilian rule.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies