Conflicts & War

US, Saudi Arabia suspend Sudan talks amid failing truce

Khartoum, Jun 1 (EFE).- Saudi Arabia and the United States announced Thursday a pause in the talks they have been mediating between the warring parties in Sudan due to “repeated serious violations” of the current cease-fire by both the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) militia.

The latest truce, agreed on May 29 and set to last five days, did little to diminish the violence and effectively collapsed Wednesday with the military’s withdrawal from the negotiations in the Saudi city of Jeddah.

“This decision comes as a result of repeated serious violations of the ceasefire by the Sudanese army and the RSF,” the US and Saudi Arabia said in a statement.

By impeding the provision of humanitarian aid and the restoration of essential services, those violations undermined the purpose of the truce, Riyadh and Washington said.

The Saudi and US governments reminded that Sudanese army and the RSF that they remain subject to the obligations they assumed in the pact they reached in Jeddah on May 11, requiring both sides to protect civilians.

At least 850 people have been killed and more than 5,500 others wounded since the fighting began on April 15, while upwards of 1.3 million Sudanese citizens have been displaced, according to the United Nations.

Significant number of refugees have fled to neighboring countries.

Sudan’s military and the RSF have been informed of what they need to do in the way of confidence-building measures to make a resumption of negotiations possible, Washington and Riyadh said.

“Saudi Arabia and the United States stand ready to reconvene the Jeddah talks once the parties have taken the necessary steps,” the mediators said.

In a related development, the administration of US President Joe Biden imposed sanctions Thursday on Sudanese companies and visa restrictions affecting individuals connected to the army or the RSF.

The conflict in Sudan pits troops loyal to Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the commander-in-chief of the armed forces, against RSF militiamen led by Mohammed Hamdan Daglo, known as Hemedti.

Hemedti supported Al-Burhan in October 2021 when the general seized control of the Sovereign Council that has governed Sudan since the ouster of dictator Omar al-Bashir in 2019.

But long-standing tensions between the regular army and the RSF paramilitaries erupted into open combat amid discussions about a reorganization of the military to expedite a return to civilian rule.

EFE az-se-cgs/dr

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