June 5, 2019 / 12:02 PM / 11 days ago

Sudan rebel leader Yasir Arman detained - spokesman

FILE PHOTO: Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) north's secretary general Yasir Arman speaks during a joint news conference with Malik Agar, head of the northern branch of SPLM, in Khartoum, July 3, 2011, about the situation in Southern Kordofan and the Blue Nile state. REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah

Khartoum (Reuters) - A Sudanese rebel leader who returned from exile after the overthrow of president Omar al-Bashir was arrested on Wednesday, his organisation said.

Yasir Arman, the deputy head of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) group, came back last month and joined other opposition groups meeting the military leaders who ousted Bashir, according to local media reports.

But those talks ground to a halt, then fell apart all together after security forces raided a protest camp in central Khartoum on Monday.

Arman was detained by security services at his house in Khartoum, a spokesman for his group said, without giving any details on the reasons.

No one was immediately available to comment from the security services.

Arman had been sentenced to death in absentia for his part in a rebellion against Bashir’s government that started in the Sudanese state of Blue Nile in 2011.

SPLM-N includes many fighters who sided with South Sudanese rebels in decades of civil war fuelled by ethnicity, oil and ideology that ended in a 2005 peace deal.

But they were left inside Sudan when that agreement paved the way to the secession of South Sudan in 2011.

Reporting by Khalid Abdelaziz; writing by Lena Masri; editing by Andrew Heavens

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