The fight against the coup will continue whether they fire tear gas or bullets, says prominent opposition figure Khalid Omar Youssef.

Pro-democracy groups say the military should not be part of the government.
Pro-democracy groups say the military should not be part of the government. (Reuters)

Tear gas was fired at thousands of supporters of Sudan's opposition Forces for Freedom and Change Movement who had gathered in the capital Khartoum.

The source of Friday’s tear gas was unclear. Witnesses said there was no sign of police officers at the scene. 

Khalid Omar Youssef, minister of cabinet affairs prior to the coup and prominent opposition figure who was arrested and released after the military took over, was on stage speaking to the crowds when the tear gas was fired.

Youssef tweeted saying, "whether they fire tear gas or bullets on us, they will not silence us…we will defeat the coup and our people will regain their freedom."

Other leading opposition figures were scheduled to speak.

Live footage aired by Sudan's congress party following the tear gas firing showed seats haphazardly scattered.

READ MORE: Hundreds killed in Sudan’s Darfur clashes

Military coup

Mass protests erupted following a military coup in October in which the Sudanese military, led by General Abdel Fattah al Burhan, took control of the government.

Protests continued following a deal announced on November 21 in which the military reinstated Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, who had been under house arrest.

The agreement between Hamdok and the military faces opposition from protesters who denounced it as a betrayal, previously seeing Hamdok as a symbol of resistance to military rule.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Twitter, "Many Sudanese people continue to demand respect for their basic human rights and to voice their enduring aspiration for a democratic Sudan. The US continues to stand with them."

READ MORE: Sudan anti-coup protests back on streets against deal with military

Source: Reuters