The Muslim Brotherhood in the Sudan War and the Maneuver for Return

Three decades spent by the Muslim Brotherhood in governing Sudan have left behind a nightmare of violence and massacres that many fear could be replicated as the organization seeks a return to power

A regime that does not believe in the principle of peaceful power rotation clung to its reins until it was overthrown by a popular revolution in 2019.

During that period, the regime was accused of excessive violence against opponents and committing massacres in various parts of the country, especially in the Darfur region, while international courts continue to pursue leaders of the former regime and its head Omar al-Bashir for those charges. Politicians fear that the return of the Muslim Brotherhood to Sudan could be a step towards their return to power later.

Power Obsession 

Sudanese journalist and political analyst Mohamed al-Asbat believes that the current crisis constitutes the organization’s latest “card” maneuvering to return to power, especially after all their attempts in the years following the December 2019 revolution.

Al-Asbat states that the Brotherhood sees this war as “the only solution and the only bridge that brings them back to power.”

He added that all Brotherhood member, “from all their factions, whether in the National Congress Party, the People’s Congress Party, or those who withdrew from political action over the past four years, or the last years of the ousted President Omar al-Bashir‘s rule, all of these are advocates of war and decisive military action.”

The expert emphasized that there is not a single Brotherhood member “talking about peaceful solutions or negotiation, even though all wars in the world end up at the negotiation table.”

Alert and Fears 

Mobilization by the army and Rapid Support Forces continues as battles persist since mid-April, laden with fears and proceeding in a dark tunnel where signs of breakthrough are absent.

Mobilization and counter-mobilization terrify many, especially the Forces for Freedom and Change, the leading bloc of civil opposition in Sudan.

This was expressed by the spokesperson for the Forces for Freedom and Change (the former ruling coalition) Jafar Hassan, warning of the country’s division if the war between the Sudanese army and the Rapid Support Forces continues for several more months.

Hassan said, “If the war continues for several more months, Sudan could disintegrate, and the country is now on the verge of dissolution.”

He added: “We have heard speeches from the Kizan (the Muslim Brotherhood) indicating the formation of a government in Port Sudan, and Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo (commander of the Rapid Support Forces) responded by forming another government in Khartoum, which means the beginning of the split, and this will not be the last split, as it will be followed by other splits, so the continuation of the war means the disintegration of Sudan.”

Brotherhood‘s Interest 

The head of the Executive Office of the Sudanese Union Party, a member of the Forces for Freedom and Change, Babiker Faisal, also considers that the war in his country serves the interests of the Muslim Brotherhood.

In an interview, Faisal regarded the dissolved National Congress Party (the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood) and its supporters as the only political party calling for the continuation of the war.

He stated that the conflicting parties acknowledge that this war is “futile” and “the victor in it is defeated,” according to the terms of the army’s leaders Abdul Fattah al-Burhan and the Rapid Support Forces Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo.

The battles are taking place in key areas of the capital Khartoum and have extended to other regions, notably Darfur, which has also been the scene of a bitter civil war.

The leader of the Forces for Freedom and Change explained that the front as a civilian party only has political and popular pressure tools, adding, “In this context, we continue to work among the masses to mobilize them in favor of calling for an end to the war, and we have continued our efforts with regional and international communities to pressure the conflicting parties to sit for negotiations.”

As the intensity of the battles escalates, most Sudanese find themselves with few options, especially as many of them are now displaced and struggling to make ends meet, in a war that seems to be long-lasting.

In a report, the British BBC examined today, Tuesday, the identity of volunteer fighters alongside the army. What are they doing? And why are many apprehensive about their appearance?

Among them is Shadli Atta, a Sudanese from the state of Kassala in the east of the country.

Atta is a member of the Sudanese Islamic Movement (Muslim Brotherhood) and volunteered to join the army to confront the Rapid Support Forces, where fighting broke out between the two parties in mid-April last year.

As soon as the fighting broke out, the army declared a state of alert. The Brotherhood came to its aid, and leaders of the ousted regime of President Omar al-Bashir intensified their efforts to mobilize what they call “mujahideen.”

For a long time, the army has denied accusations from its enemies in the Rapid Support Forces that it relies on supporters of al-Bashir who have lost their credibility.

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