CAIRO (AP) — Sudan’s prime minister said he survived an assassination attempt Monday after an explosion went off near his convoy in the capital of Khartoum.
Abdalla Hamdok, a longtime economist, tweeted he was “safe and in good shape” following the explosion. Sudanese state TV said Hamdok had been heading to his office when the attack took place.
Hamdok also tweeted a photo of himself smiling and seated at his desk, while a TV behind him showed news coverage reporting he’d survived.
The attack highlighted the fragility of Sudan’s transition to civilian rule, almost a year after pro-democracy protesters forced the military to remove autocratic President Omar al-Bashir from power and replace him with a joint military-civilian government, which has promised to hold elections in three years.
However, the military generals remain the de facto rulers of the country and have shown little willingness to hand over power to civilians.
Hamdok, in his brief statement on Twitter, said, “Rest assured that what happened today will not stand in the way of our transition, instead it is an additional push to the wheel of change in Sudan.”
No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack.
Faisal Saleh, Sudan’s information minister and interim government spokesman, said the attack was carried out using both explosives and firearms, and that a security officer was lightly wounded.
Footage posted online showed two white, Japanese-made SUVs vehicles typically used by Sudan’s top officials parked on a street, damaged with its widows broken. Another vehicle was badly damaged in the blast. Several dozen people were seen in the site of the attack, chanting: “With our blood and soul, we redeem you, Hamdok.”
The protest movement that led the uprising against al-Bashir called the blast a “terrorist attack.” The statement by the Forces for the Declaration of Freedom and Change called on people to take to the streets to “show our unity and cohesion … and protect the transitional authority.”