22:40 GMT17 February 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Saudi Arabian Airline Saudia, the kingdom's national flag carrier, announced on Thursday its decision to suspend flights to and from Sudan after the coup in the African state.

    "Due to the closure of two airports in Khartoum and Port Sudan, Saudi Airlines announces the suspension of all flights between the kingdom and Sudan until further notice," the airline said on its Twitter page.

    ​Earlier in the day, Sudanese Defence Minister Awad Mohamed Ahmed Ibn Auf announced the establishment of a military council that would govern the country for two years. The minister added that President Omar Bashir had been detained and that a three-month-long state of emergency had been imposed in the country. The national air space has been closed for 24 hours.

    Sudan has seen months of protests that erupted in the country in December. The rallies were initially triggered by the rise in prices for bread and other consumer goods that greatly increased the vulnerability of Sudanese citizens. The protests then took on a new dimension as Sudanese citizens started calling for the resignation of Bashir, who has been in power for nearly 30 years.


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