NAIROBI, Kenya-After three decades in power, Sudan's President Hassan Omar al-Bashir was overthrown by a military coup amidst widespread protests that started past year.
Sudan's defense minister, Awad Mohamed Ahmed Ibn Auf, said the "regime" had been removed and its head arrested, as he announced the coup in a televised statement.
Mr Ibn Auf said Sudan's airspace would be shut for 24 hours, while border crossings would be closed indefinitely.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Thursday expressed his hope that Sudan can overcome its upheaval peacefully through "national consensus" and urged it to try to operate "a normal democratic process", after the country's longtime President Omar al-Bashir who was overthrown and arrested by the military.
In 2005, al-Bashir's government managed to put an end to the Second Sudanese Civil War, which broke out in 1983 between the central government in Khartoum and the Sudan People's Liberation Army.
The protests have intensified since April 6 as thousands of demonstrators joined a sit-in outside army headquarters in Khartoum, which also houses al-Bashir's residence, calling for the president to step down.
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Opposition figures have called for the military to help negotiate an end to Bashir's almost three decades in power and a transition to democracy. He is wanted on charges of genocide and war crimes by the International Criminal Court.
As pressure mounted on al-Bashir to leave power, almost 50 people were killed in a series of protests that erupted in December, according to media reports.
Sudanese activists behind months-long protests against al-Bashir say hundreds who were detained over the demonstrations have already been freed.
- June 30, 1989: As brigade commander and with the backing of hardliners, he seizes power in a coup against the democratically elected government.
Tens of thousands of people danced and chanted anti-Bashir slogans in the streets of Khartoum, a sharp contrast to the past, when he fired up crowds with anti-Western rhetoric, sometimes breaking into impromptu dances.
Protest organizers in Sudan denounced the army's takeover and vowed to continue rallies until a civilian transitional government is formed.
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Sudan's powerful intelligence service announced on Thursday it was freeing all the country's political detainees, state media said.
Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir came to power in a 1989 coup.
The protests were initially fueled by anger over the deteriorating economy but quickly turned to demands for the president's ouster, and gained momentum last week after Bouteflika's resignation in Algeria.
Sudanese radio is playing military marches ahead of the announcement.
Mr Bashir is the subject of an worldwide arrest warrant issued by the global Criminal Court (ICC), which accuses him of organising war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sudan's western Darfur region.
Word of al-Bashir's removal first emerged in the morning. Al-Bashir banned unauthorized public gatherings and granted sweeping powers to the police since imposing a state of emergency in February.
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A son of Sadiq al-Mahdi, the head of the country's main opposition Umma Party, told al-Hadath TV that the ousted leader was being held with "a number of leaders of the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood group".