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Sudan's Transition in the Balance


The once-in-a-generation opportunity that Sudan’s popular revolution created faced strong headwinds from the beginning. These included obstacles from within and without: a significant part of the Transitional Government hailed from the former regime and powerful regional countries opposed the democratic change the liberal forces promised. The challenge for the revolution is to consolidate the protest movement’s power into an organised political force that can shape the transition against these two headwinds with a view to ensuring that the elections marking the end of the transition are the true arbiter of Sudan’s next government. In other words, ensuring elections are free and fair and that all political trends stand on equal footing rather than the elections being dominated by the better resourced military affiliated forces or the better organised former regime political cadres. While embracing the promise of a liberal, democratic Sudan, Europe has faced difficulty in translating this into effective support: creating space vis-à-vis the powerful regional countries and in evolving an approach towards the liberal actors that strengthens their development into a mature political force.

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