Sudan's al-Bashir defiant in face of weeks of unrest

Anti-government protesters rally in Khartoum, Sudan, Sunday, Jan. 13, 2019. Hundreds of protesters are marching again in and around Sudan's capitol Kh...

Anti-government protesters rally in Khartoum, Sudan, Sunday, Jan. 13, 2019. Hundreds of protesters are marching again in and around Sudan's capitol Kh...

CAIRO (AP) — Sudan's longtime ruler is defiant in the face of more than three weeks of protests demanding his resignation.

President Omar al-Bashir reiterated to a rally in western Sudan on Monday that a change of leadership can only come through elections.

His ruling Popular Congress Party has nominated him to run for another term in office next year

Police on Monday detained at least 18 journalists, mostly from the independent Khartoum daily al-Jareeda. The arrests were made as the journalists gathered outside the newspaper's offices before heading to the headquarters of the domestic security agency to protest state censorship.

The street protests erupted on Dec. 19, initially sparked by price hikes and shortages but which soon shifted to calling on al-Bashir's ouster. At least 40 have been killed in clashes.