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Sudan's president: 'We are not afraid'

  |   Feb. 14, 2011 at 3:05 PM
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KHARTOUM, Sudan, Feb. 14 (UPI) -- Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir says he doesn't fear being deposed like Tunisian and Egyptian leaders who were ousted by uprisings in their countries.

Bashir and other Sudanese officials have downplayed suggestions that the country could face similar unrest, the Sudan Tribune reported Sunday.

"We are not afraid, we do not prevent the people from expressing their opinions, but we listen to them and we want to hear their demands and their legitimate aspirations," Bashir told supporters in the country's Northern state.

"We are with freedom for everybody ... whoever stood with us or stood against us," he said.

His National Congress Party got "full authorization" from the people in last year's elections, Bashir said.

One political analyst in Khartoum said Bashir's statement reflected a growing concern about being ousted in a similar manner to his counterparts in Tunisia and Egypt.

"The deteriorating economic conditions of people in Sudan is making Bashir and the NCP wary that one [day] they wake up and find themselves thrown out," the analyst, who asked not to be named for fear of retaliation, told the Tribune.

"The recent events [in Tunisia and Egypt] proved that these things could materialize in matter of days," he said.

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