AFRICA/SUDAN - New agreement for a 7-day truce: the population on the brink of collapse and the capital remains under siege

Monday, 8 May 2023

Jeddah (Agenzia Fides) - There has been no truce for the Sudanese population since armed clashes began on April 15 between the regular army of General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and the paramilitaries of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) of General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo (see Fides, 19/4/2023). According to estimates, since the beginning of the conflict at least 700 people have died. It is recent news that, after several ceasefire agreements (see Fides, 21/4/2023), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of South Sudan has declared that an agreement in principle has been reached on a seven-day truce. The meeting between representatives of the warring military parties was held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, while Arab foreign affairs ministers were in Cairo for an emergency meeting of the Inter-Arab Organization dedicated to the crisis in Sudan. However, despite the new ceasefire, scheduled from 4 to 11 May, military attacks continue and Khartoum remains under siege.
Negotiations in Jeddah continue and, according to the two coup generals, their only purpose is to ensure humanitarian corridors for the evacuation of foreigners and Sudanese civilians stranded on the battlefields and to get international aid. The situation is dramatic, the local press reports daily assaults on homes and businesses and armed men robbing banks.
According to the doctors' committee, all the hospitals in the capital are out of service due to lack of supplies and medicines. Doctors are forced to operate without anesthesia, using water and salt as a disinfectant for wounds. It is feared that a prolongation of the crisis could lead the country to split into many small states, in constant struggle, as in the case of South Sudan. (AP) (Agenzia Fides, 8/5/2023)