Sudan in Crisis - Fighting Rages Civilians Flee

Sudan in Crisis – Fighting Rages Civilians Flee

Since April 2023, conflict has broken out across Sudan and its capital city of Khartoum. Armed forces supporting two rival generals are competing for control.

Civilians are paying the ultimate price of this power struggle that neither side appears willing to end. Civilians could face further humanitarian crises as a result.

Why Are Civilians Fleeing?

Sudan, an African nation situated at the intersection of North Africa, Sahel and Horn of Africa, is currently embroiled in civil war as two rival generals are locked in an argument which threatens stability across its region, including in neighboring Chad and South Sudan.

On April 15th, fighting broke out between the military and Rapid Support Forces – a paramilitary group previously aligned in helping topple longtime president Omar al-Bashir in an unprecedented popular revolution earlier in 2019 – over how best to integrate RSF into the army.

Since that time, fighting has left over 400 people dead and transformed large parts of Khartoum into a war zone. Tens of thousands have fled into neighboring countries while millions remain trapped inside Khartoum and its hot spots. Food and fuel prices have spiked astronomically while hospitals have been damaged or closed as result of violent conflict.

What Are the Groups Involved?

Sudanese conflict primarily centers around two main paramilitary forces formed by Omar Bashir to suppress armed resistance movements – Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) and Revolutionary Salvation Front, or RSF.

READ MORE:   Hundreds Evacuated From Sudan As Fighting Continues

RSF was formed in the 1980s to combat Darfur’s rebellion against Sudanese central government, which began when ethnic Arab groups complained they were being denied land and other resources from Khartoum’s central government. Khartoum responded by arming and supporting Arab militias known as Janjaweed that targeted Africans.

Human rights groups and refugees accuse the Janjaweed of killing men, women and children at rates comparable to Rwanda’s 1994 genocide. The UN has classified Darfur’s fighting as ethnic cleansing; calling upon Sudan’s government to cease supporting Janjaweed activities.

What Is the Humanitarian Crisis?

Fighting Rages Civilians Flee

Sudan is experiencing an unprecedented humanitarian crisis that is impacting millions of people. Extreme weather shocks, social unrest and rising food prices are fuelling poverty, hunger and displacement throughout the country.

Nearly 1 million refugees reside in camps, out-of-camp settlements, and urban areas of Sudan and are particularly vulnerable to food insecurity, water shortage, and sanitation problems.

These refugees make up over one quarter of the country’s total population and need assistance from both government agencies and international aid groups.

Sudanese humanitarian situation is compounded by a worsening economic crisis, high inflation rates and shortage of hard currency – factors which make importation of food, fuel, medicines and relief items challenging. Humanitarian partners also face bureaucratic barriers preventing principled access, severely hindering their ability to deliver emergency assistance directly to affected populations.

What is the Solution?

Multiple countries, led by the US and its allies, are working toward securing a ceasefire as part of efforts to establish peace in the region.

READ MORE:   Sudan Military and Paramilitary Forces Engage in Deadly Battle for Control

But this conflict cannot be overcome through any single effort alone; its resolution requires the joint participation of both international and regional communities.

At first, a united diplomatic bloc is necessary. This should include key players like the US, UK, EU and China as well as Egypt, Saudi Arabia and UAE as possible players in making peace more likely.

Second, it must provide a framework that fosters consensus-building between Sudan’s various stakeholders and facilitates an orderly process leading to civilian-led governance. This process should focus on resolving various conflicts while setting conditions necessary for lasting democracy transition.

Finally, the strategy should promote an inclusive and participative process for political change and development that better meets the nation’s diverse social and cultural needs. This should include assistance to address women’s rights issues, judicial reform efforts and civil society.

Scroll to Top