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Tom's Take

April 7th, 2010
12:11 PM ET
Sr. Writer for Amanpour, Tom Evans, works on scripts  with Christiane

Sr. Writer for Amanpour, Tom Evans, works on scripts with Christiane

On AMANPOUR. today, we ask what the upcoming presidential elections in Sudan will mean for the 2005 breakthrough agreement that ended a civil war that brought a measure of peace between north and south after the deaths of two million people.  If President Omar al-Bashir ends up back in power, will he try to stop a referendum on independence for the south from taking place next year?  Will these elections be free and fair, and what’s at stake for the international community and the people of Sudan?  Sudan is just one of the stories making headlines today. Here are some perspectives.

– Tom Evans; Sr. Writer, AMANPOUR.

SUDAN – Is the credibility of the first multi-party elections in more than two decades now in question?

–    Ex-rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement extends its boycott of next week’s elections, saying it is pulling out of parliamentary and local races in the country’s northern provinces. SPLM accusing government of rigging poll
–    SPLM decision follows its announcement last week that it’s also withdrawing its candidate from the national presidential race
–    Elections are a crucial step in the north-south peace deal that ended a 21-year-old civil war between north and south, and paved the way for a referendum on whether the south should secede from Sudan

QUESTION: Should the elections be delayed to allow Sudan’s political rivals to work out their differences before a vote?

KYRGYZSTAN – Is the Central Asian nation on the brink of revolution?

–    Police in Kyrgyzstan crack down on protesters trying to seize country’s main government building in the capital Bishkek. Reports say at least two people were killed
–    Opposition increasingly vocal in its protests against authoritarian President Kurmanbek Bakiyev and the rising cost of living
–    Instability a major concern for both Russia and America. The country hosts a military base that supports U.S. military operations in Afghanistan

QUESTION: Will Kyrgyzstan government unleash a violent response to the protesters – or seek a compromise with the opposition?

THAILAND – Is the Thai government in danger of falling after weeks of opposition protests?

–    Anti-government protesters break into Thailand’s parliament for a short time, forcing lawmakers to flee by climbing walls. Some were rescued by a helicopter
–    So-called “red shirt” protesters are intensifying their 4-week-old protests in an attempt to force Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva to dissolve parliament and call elections
–    Protesters say Prime Minister was not democratically elected. PM says anti-government rallies violate the nation’s constitution and declares a state of emergency

QUESTION: Who will blink first in this increasingly tense showdown between the Thai government and its political enemies?

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