On Wednesday, the United Nations estimated that the number of people in need of humanitarian aid in Sudan is about 25 million, and about $3.03 billion the volume of emergency aid necessary for the country and those fleeing the war to neighboring countries, whose number is expected to exceed one million this year.
Humanitarian needs have worsened since a bloody conflict broke out in Sudan on April 15, according to the United Nations, which has revised its plan to respond to the crisis.
“Today, 25 million people – more than half of Sudan’s population – need humanitarian assistance and protection,” Ramesh Rajasingham, director of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Geneva, told reporters, explaining that this number is “the largest number” of people in need of humanitarian aid recorded by the UN agency in this country. Absolutely.
And the United Nations stated that it expects to need 2.56 billion dollars to provide aid inside Sudanese territory, compared to 1.75 billion dollars, according to estimates at the end of last year.
The battles that have been going on for more than a month in Sudan have left nearly a thousand dead, about 840,000 displaced, and 220,000 refugees.
The money will allow relief agencies to reach the 18 million most vulnerable people in the country, according to Rajasingham.
On Wednesday, the neighborhoods of Khartoum seemed deserted, and columns of smoke rose from the battles.
For the first time, the official Sudanese agency published footage showing the army commander, Lieutenant General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, surrounded by soldiers, as he inspected a charred building belonging to the army’s general command in Khartoum.
Battles broke out in the middle of last month between Al-Burhan and the commander of the Rapid Support Forces, Lieutenant General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo.
About a thousand people were killed, most of them in and around Khartoum and in West Darfur state, according to medical sources.
More than five thousand people have been injured, while millions are still stuck in their homes and unable to access basic services and health care, according to Rajasingham.
The UN official also alerted to “disturbing reports of an increase in sexual violence,” warning that “children are particularly vulnerable in this unfolding chaos.”
The fighting has deepened the humanitarian crisis in Sudan, where even before the war, one in three people depended on humanitarian assistance.
1.1 million fled
Rajasingham expressed his regret that humanitarian workers were subjected to several attacks, including those killed, while offices and stocks were looted.
He expressed his hope that the warring parties would abide by the humanitarian rules they reached last week regarding evacuating civilians from combat zones and providing safe passages for the transport of humanitarian aid.
He pointed out that the fighters withdrew from some health facilities that were previously occupied, indicating an increase in aid deliveries, but he stressed, however, that “more is needed.”
“The crisis in Sudan is rapidly turning into a regional crisis,” he said.
At the same time, the UN agency indicated that it needs an additional $470.4 million to help people who have fled the country, adding that it is currently preparing to secure the needs of up to 1.1 million people who are expected to flee Sudan during the current year alone.
Just two weeks ago, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said it would need $445 million through October to meet the needs of up to 860,000 people who may flee the country.
“So far, the crisis that began just a month ago has led to a massive influx into neighboring countries of some 220,000 refugees and returnees seeking safety in Chad, South Sudan, Egypt, Central African Republic and Ethiopia,” Assistant High Commissioner for Operations Rauf Mazou told reporters.
In addition, more than 700,000 people have been displaced within Sudan as a result of the fighting.
The United Nations expects that among the more than one million people expected to flee Sudan, about 640 thousand Sudanese and 204 thousand people who were refugees in Sudan may return to their homeland, perhaps mainly South Sudan.
Some 1.1 million refugees were living in Sudan before the conflict began.
Diplomatic efforts in all directions
In Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, the two Sudanese sides are still holding talks about a “humanitarian” ceasefire to allow civilians out and aid to enter.
“The need for humanitarian workers to be given access and given the resources and security guarantees to provide effective support to those who depend on them,” said Michael Dunford, WFP’s Regional Director for East Africa.
Also in the Saudi city, which is hosting an Arab summit on Friday, Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan discussed with the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States Ahmed Aboul Gheit the issue of the conflict in Sudan.
Doctors Without Borders announced that “armed men entered its warehouse in Khartoum on Tuesday and looted” at least “two cars full of foodstuffs.”
On Wednesday, Kenya’s President William Ruto called on the two generals to “stop this absurdity.”
Diplomatic efforts are increasing in all directions – and they are clearly parallel – in light of the fact that no one has yet succeeded in forcing the two generals to stop the fighting, amid fears in Sudan’s neighboring countries of the contagion of the conflict.