EU Ambassador to Sudan assaulted amid violent power struggle

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The European Union’s ambassador to Sudan, Aidan O’Hara from Ireland, was assaulted “in his own residency” on Monday amidst a violent power struggle between rival military factions in the country.

EU’s top diplomat, Josep Borrell, condemned the attack, saying that it “constitutes a gross violation of the Vienna Convention.”

Borrell also urged Sudanese authorities to take responsibility for the safety of diplomatic premises and staff. A spokesperson for the European External Action Service confirmed that the ambassador is “OK” and “continuing his duties.”

The violent clashes erupted over the weekend between army units loyal to General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, head of Sudan’s transitional governing Sovereign Council, and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), led by General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo. Disagreements between the two sides escalated over the integration of the RSF into the armed forces under an internationally backed transition plan.

The violence has led to over 180 deaths and 1,800 injuries since Saturday, according to UN envoy Volker Perthes.

Borrell has called for a ceasefire and urged both sides to engage in dialogue. He said that “civilians in Sudan urgently need a ceasefire in order to be safe and allow space for mediation. The EU is working to persuade each side to consider a humanitarian pause and to encourage dialogue.”