Members of Sudan’s transitional government and civilian leaders have been arrested on Monday amid reports of a military coup, according to media reports.
Pro-democracy protesters have taken to the streets of the capital, Khartoum.
Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok is also detained and moved to an undisclosed location after refusing to issue a statement in support of the coup, said the information ministry, still apparently under the control of Hamdok’s supporters.
the Ministry also said tens of thousands of people opposed to the coup had taken to the streets and had faced gunfire near the military’s headquarters in the capital Khartoum.
There was no immediate comment from the military.
Video footage showed protesters manning lit barricades and entering the area near the military’s headquarters. Gunfires were also reported.
No-one in the military has commented so far and it remains unclear who was behind the pre-dawn arrests.
The US, UN, EU, UK and Arab League have expressed deep concern.
Witnesses told the BBC that the internet is down and that army and paramilitary troops have been deployed across the city. Khartoum airport is now closed, and international flights are suspended.
Sudan’s main pro-democracy group has called on its supporters to resist any military coup.
Sudan has been on edge since a failed coup plot last month unleashed recriminations between military and civilian groups, who have been sharing power following the toppling of long-serving ruler Omar al-Bashir two years ago.
The political transition, which was agreed after Bashir was brought down by street protests, has seen Sudan emerge from international isolation under Bashir’s nearly three-decade rule.
Elections were to be held by the end of 2023.
But the deal has always been fractious, with a large number of rival political groups – and divisions within the military too.
Tensions grew further after a coup attempt attributed to followers of Mr Bashir was foiled in September.
Sudan has been unable to find a workable political system since independence in 1956 and has seen numerous coups and coup attempts.
Featured Image caption: Demonstrators block roads in the capital, Khartoum, in protest at the arrests (Photo AFP)