Sudanese Political, Civil Society Groups Meet In Egypt

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In a bid to end the war in Sudan, political and civil society groups met over the weekend in Egypt to discuss ways to end the war engulfing the country.

The warring parties, however, didn’t take part in the Egypt-sponsored conference.

Sudan descended into chaos in April last year when simmering tensions between the country’s military and a notorious paramilitary group, the Rapid Support Forces, exploded into open fighting in the capital, Khartoum and elsewhere in the country.

The devastating conflict has killed more than 14,000 people and wounded 33,000 others, according to the United Nations, but rights activists say the toll could be much higher.

The war in Sudan has created the world’s largest displacement crisis with over 11 million people forced to flee their homes.

International experts warned last month that 755,000 people are facing famine in the coming months and that 8.5 million people are facing extreme food shortages.

Saturday’s gathering was the latest effort to end the war in Sudan.

It has been hosted by the Egyptian government in the New Administrative Capital, a mega city east of Cairo.

Previous efforts, including US-Saudi-mediated talks between the military and the RSF, failed to end the fighting.

“Any real political solution to the crisis in Sudan must be based on a purely Sudanese vision emanating from the Sudanese themselves,” Egyptian Foreign Minister Badr Abdelatty said in his opening speech.

Many Sudanese groups attended the conference including an alliance of pro-democracy political parties and groups led by former Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok.

Also attended were some leaders of Sudanese rebel groups, including Malik Agar of the Sudan Revolutionary Front and Gibril Ibrahim of the Justice and Equality Movement.

Representatives of the Arab League, African Union, United Nations and European Union as well as other countries also attended.