Omar Al Bashir Image Credit: Reuters

Khartoum. Sudanese President Omar Al Bashir on Friday ordered the release of all women protesters detained during nationwide demonstrations that have rocked the country since December.

Bashir made the announcement during a meeting with a group of people from eastern Sudan at his residence in Khartoum. “I order Salah Ghosh to release all women detainees,” Bashir said at the meeting, referring to the chief of the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS).

The media office at the presidency also confirmed that Bashir had ordered the release of all women detainees held during the demonstrations.

Hundreds of protesters, opposition leaders, activists and journalists have been detained since the rallies erupted on December 19 following a government decision to triple the price of bread.

The protests quickly mushroomed into nationwide demonstrations against Bashir’s rule, with crowds calling on the veteran leader to step down.

Bashir himself has acknowledged that the protests were led by youths, the majority of them women.

Officials say 31 people have died in protest related violence so far, while the Human Rights Watch has put the death toll at at least 51.