Sudan's ruling military council and a coalition of opposition and protest leaders reached an agreement on Friday July 5th to share power, until elections are held, in a breakthrough accord aimed at ending the country's months-long political crisis, since the ousting of longtime ruler Omar Al-Bashir in April, Reuters has reported.
They also agreed to rotate control of the sovereign council, the top tier of the country’s power, for at least three years, according to the BBC.
The landmark agreement was reached after two days of negotiations with the mediation of Ethiopian and African Union envoys, after the previous round of talks in May over who should rule the country, as opposition leaders and the military had reached a deadlock.
"The two sides agreed on establishing a sovereign council with a rotating military and civilian presidency for a period of three years or slightly more," African Union mediator, Mohamed El Hassan Lebatt told reporters.
Lebatt did not specify, however, the exact structure of the new ruling body, but prominent protest leader, Ahmed al-Rabie told AFP that it would be made up of six civilians, including five from the protest movement, and five members of the military.
The two sides also agreed to form an independent government, and to investigate the deadly violence against protesters in recent weeks, in a transparent, independent manner. They also agreed to postpone the establishment of a legislative council.
Following the announcement of the agreement, crowds of jubilant Sudanese took to the streets of Khartoum chanting "civilian rule."
“Today we can say that our revolution has embarked on the right path in achieving our goals," said north Khartoum resident, Somaiya Hassan.
Sudan has been torn by a political crisis since widespread waves of protests led to the ousting of long-time leader, president Al-Bashir in April, following a popular uprising against rising prices, but with the generals who took power resisting demonstrators' demands to hand government over to civilians.
One of the opposition’s key demands was for a transition period, as they had argued against immediate elections, and said they needed at least three years to prepare voter registration lists and to be able to restore the democratic institutions rendered powerless by decades of rule under Bashir.