In an effort that seems primarily targeted at staving off pro-democracy protests that have beset the entire rest of the Muslim world, Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir has promised that he will not run again for reelection when his term is up in 2015.
Sudan has been some protests over the past month, but so far they have been relatively small compared to the others in the region. The pro-active promise, though likely irrelevant to the 2015 election, appears aimed at tamping down those protests before they get any bigger.
And while it remains to be seen if this will work, the track record is not good. Indeed, when other leaders have pledged not to run for those additional terms in office, Yemen being a notable example, it had no impact on the protests.
Of course, the largest collection of likely protesters against Bashir were already removed from the situation when South Sudan seceded from the nation a few weeks ago. Still, Bashir, as with most of the regional tyrants, has no shortage of enemies from his decades of rule, and the prospect of a new Sudan revolt still seems possible.
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