Sudan’s Warring Parties Urged to Agree to New Ceasefire

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Sudan’s warring parties have been strongly encouraged to reach an agreement and “effectively implement” a new ceasefire as the nation experiences renewed violence.

The troubled north-eastern African country descended into chaos when clashes erupted in mid-April between the military, led by General Abdel-Fattah Burhan, and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), commanded by General Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo.

In recent weeks, Saudi Arabia and the United States have been engaging in mediation efforts between the conflicting factions.

On May 21, these countries successfully brokered a temporary ceasefire to facilitate the delivery of vital humanitarian aid to Sudan.

However, their efforts suffered a setback when the military announced its withdrawal from the ceasefire talks held in the Saudi coastal city of Jeddah on Wednesday.

Following this development, the US and Saudi Arabia declared the suspension of the talks “as a result of repeated serious violations of the short-term ceasefire.”

In response, the Biden administration imposed sanctions on key Sudanese defence companies associated with the military and RSF, as well as individuals involved in perpetuating violence in Sudan.

In a joint statement, Washington and Riyadh called upon the warring sides in Sudan to agree to and uphold a new ceasefire, subsequent to the expiration of the previous one late on Saturday.

The ongoing conflict has transformed Khartoum, the capital, and other urban areas into battlegrounds, displacing over 1.65 million people who have sought refuge in safer regions within Sudan and neighboring countries.

Residents have reported intensified fighting over the past two days in Khartoum, as well as in the adjacent cities of Omdurman and Bahri.

Early Sunday, the sounds of heavy shelling and gunfire reverberated through parts of Omdurman, accompanied by the presence of military aircraft flying over the capital.

Additionally, clashes have been documented in the northern area of the Darfur region, which has witnessed some of the most severe battles since the conflict erupted on April 15.