June 5, 2019 / 1:02 PM / 13 days ago

UPDATE 1-Saudi Arabia says it is watching Sudan with concern, urges renewed dialogue

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DUBAI, June 5 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia said on Wednesday it is watching developments in Sudan with great concern and it supports continued dialogue between the ruling military council and the opposition.

Saudi Arabia has close ties to the council, which has taken control of Sudan since the overthrow of President Omar al-Bashir in April.

Talks between the military and the opposition, which seeks a leading civilian role in a transition to democracy, have broken down. About 60 people have been killed in a crackdown on protestors by security forces since Monday, the oppostion says.

“The Kingdom hopes that all parties in Sudan will choose wisdom and constructive dialogue to preserve security and stability in Sudan, protect the people of Sudan from all harm, while maintaining Sudan’s interests and unity,” a statement on the official Saudi Press Agency said on Wednesday.

“The Kingdom affirms the importance of resuming the dialogue between the various parties in Sudan to fulfill the aspirations of the brotherly Sudanese people.”

Sudan’s opposition Democratic Alliance of Lawyers on Tuesday urged “some Arab countries” not to interfere in Sudanese affairs and to drop their support for the military council - comments apparently aimed at Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt.

Transitional Military Council Head Abdel Lieutenant General Fattah al-Burhan and his deputy Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo have ties to the two Gulf states through the participation of Sudanese troops in the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen’s civil war. (Reporting by Maher Chmaytelli; editing by Angus MacSwan)

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