UN Denounce Violence in Sudan
The power struggle between two generals in Sudan and related violence, which intensified on Saturday and Sunday and resulted in at least dozens of civilian and military deaths, have been denounced by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
The senior officials were responding on Saturday morning to the beginning of armed hostilities between the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) in numerous locations both inside and outside the capital, Khartoum.
The RSF reportedly asserted that it had taken over the presidential palace, Merowe Airport, al-Obeid Airport, and the international airport in Khartoum.
The Janjaweed militia, which was historically active in Sudan’s Darfur area, gave rise to the RSF, an independent military force in the country. Since the military takeover in 2021, the organization has been involved in negotiations to replace military control with a civilian government.
In a statement released by his spokesperson Stephane Dujarric, Mr. Guterres demanded that the commanders of the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces “immediately cease hostilities.
The UN chief urged them to regain composure and begin a conversation to end the current situation, and he urged Member States in the area to support their efforts by supporting the way back to the transition to civilian government.
According to Mr. Dujarric, Mr. Guterres had discussions on de-escalating the situation with Moussa Faki Mahamat, the president of the African Union, and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.
He continued by saying that the secretary general had also spoken with the heads of the two competing military factions, the Sudanese Army’s Abdel Fattah Al Burhan and the RSF’s Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo.
One of the topics discussed as part of a UN-backed political deal agreed in February after months of discussions was the incorporation of the RSF into the military forces.
Volker Perthes, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Sudan and Head of the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS), however, warned that tensions between the Sudanese Army and the RSF have increased recently and called for decreasing during a Security Council briefing on March 20.
In his comments on the ongoing fighting, Mr. Perthes made contact with both parties and pleaded with them to put an end to it right away in order to protect the safety of the Sudanese people and prevent future bloodshed.
Similar worries were voiced by Martin Griffiths, the UN’s emergency relief coordinator.
Griffiths stated in a tweet that the situation for the almost 16 million people, or about a third of the population, in need of humanitarian help would only get worse with additional violence.
Volker Türk, the UN’s rights chief, also expressed concern over the developing circumstance in a tweet, saying the Sudanese people “deserve better.”