Avatar photo

By Faizel Patel

Senior Digital Journalist


Sudan: Raging battle sparks mass evacuations by countries

Millions of Sudanese, thousands of foreign diplomats, aid workers and students found themselves in a war zone on April 15


The battle raging in Sudan has sparked multiple evacuation operations as countries around the world race to extract thousands of their citizens from Khartoum.

Millions of Sudanese, thousands of foreign diplomats, aid workers and students found themselves in a war zone on 15 April and have been trying to leave since.

The United States and multiple European, Middle Eastern, African and Asian nations have launched emergency missions to bring to safety their embassy staff and Sudan-based citizens by road, air and sea.

Death toll

Fierce fighting broke out in the north African country’s capital of Khartoum over a week ago between the military and a paramilitary force.

The fighting has not stopped and a series of ceasefires have failed to hold, resulting in the death of more than 420 people.

Extractions

One of the countries that have extracted citizens out of Sudan is the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

“We are pleased to announce the safe arrival of the citizens of the Kingdom who were evacuated from the Republic of Sudan as well as several nationals of other countries, including diplomats and international officials, who arrived in an evacuation operation carried out by the Royal Saudi Naval Forces with the support of various branches of the armed forces,” it said.

“The number of citizens who were evacuated reached 91 citizens, while the number of people who were evacuated from other countries reached approximately 66.”

ALSO READ: ‘The streets are dangerous’: SA calls for calm and peace in Sudan

South Africa

The South African International Relations Department (Dirco) on Monday also confirmed that South Africans are on their way out of Khartoum amid the intensified fighting in Sudan.

“Our nationals and embassy staff are on their way out of Khartoum.  I can’t disclose the security and  logistics of the operation. But they are moving out. We are in constant contact with them,” tweeted International Relations spokesperson Clayson Monyela.

Calls for peace

Meanwhile, the Jamiatul Ulama of South Africa (Jusa) – (Council of Muslim theologians) said while it appreciates the complexity of the factors behind the Sudan conflict, “the long-term consequences of continued violence are not difficult to perceive.”

“Sudan’s progress towards transition to civilian rule, peace and stability will be set back many years. A sustained violent conflict will further immiserate ordinary citizens who have already been subjected to immense suffering in recent years.

“Jusa appeals to the warring factions to cease fighting and work towards a political settlement. Warfare and violence should yield to peace, and give hope for a future of a prosperous Sudan,” it said.

ALSO READ: SA citizens, embassy staff are being evacuated from Sudan’s capital – Dirco