Dozens of bodies have reportedly been pulled from the River Nile in Sudan, bringing the death toll from recent unrest to more than a hundred.
The Sudan Doctors’ Committee, a group aligned with the opposition, said at least 40 bodies had been recovered in the capital Khartoum on Tuesday.
It follows violence on Monday, when Sudanese security forces opened fire on protesters taking part in a sit-in outside the city’s military headquarters.
Protesters have been there since 6 April, amid the toppling of former president Omar al-Bashir in a coup.
They want the military to hand power to a civilian-led government.
Opposition medics initially estimated that 13 people had been killed in the violence, but this figure rose rapidly, passing a hundred by Wednesday.
Activist Amal al Zein said she believed the number of dead could be higher as dozens more bodies had been recovered from various places along the river.
She said: “Some bodies have wounds from bullets, others seemed to have beaten and thrown in the Nile.”
There is so far no official figure of the number of people killed.
Talks between civilian representatives and the military began in May and eventually reached an agreement on a transitional period that would last three years.
But at the start of the week, following the violence, the military council suspended talks and cancelled all agreements.
The deputy head of the military council, General Mohamed Hamdan “Hemedti” Dagalo, said on Wednesday that a “fair and independent” investigation into violence had been opened.
He said anyone found to have “crossed boundaries” would be punished.
The council has now called for talks to resume, but this was rejected by the opposition, which said the transition process had been thrown into jeopardy.
Mohammed Yousef al Mustafa, a spokesperson for the opposition Sudanese Professional Association, said the call to resume talks was “not serious”, and that the military “have killed the Sudanese and are still doing it”.
He added: “Their vehicles patrol the streets firing at people.”
“We will continue in our protests, resistance, strike and total civil disobedience.”
Meanwhile, another opposition group said one of its leaders involved in the transitional talks had been arrested by security forces in Khartoum.
Yasir Arman, the deputy leader of Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North, was reportedly detained at his temporary residence in the city.
The arrest has been described as “outrageous” by British ambassador Irfan Siddiq, who has called for Mr Arman’s release.