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As the world turns its back, war rages on in Sudan

For Equaltimes


Violence has been a structurally defining feature of Sudan almost ever since its creation in 1956. Today, the result of this violence, with the outbreak of the latest conflict on 15 April, is thousands more dead and wounded, 1.3 million refugees (mainly in Chad), more than 5 million people forcibly displaced and 25 million dependent on humanitarian aid to survive (out of a total population of 45.6 million). And despite the brutal scale of the tragedy, which places Sudan at the heart of the world’s largest humanitarian crisis, it still receives such limited international attention. It should therefore come as no surprise that, in response to the demand made on 16 November by the authorities in Khartoum, the UN Security Council passed a resolution (with only Russia abstaining) putting an end (as of 3 December) to the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS).

The UN mission began in 2020, a year after the fall of dictator Omar al-Bashir, with the aim of supporting the transition to democracy. It was not long before Abdelfatah al-Burhan staged a coup, in October of the same year, taking advantage of his position as head of the armed forces, and coincided with the end of the United Nations-African Union Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID). This peacekeeping force confined to Darfur, with some 20,000 troops deployed on the ground, gave way to a political mission with barely 250 troops and a mandate to operate throughout the country.

Una misión que arrancó en 2020, un año después de la caída del dictador Omar al Bashir, con el objetivo de apoyar la transición hacia la democracia, y muy poco antes de que, en octubre de aquel mismo año, Abdelfatah al-Burhan diera un golpe de Estado aprovechando su posición como jefe de las fuerzas armadas, al tiempo que UNAMID (United Nations-African Union Hybrid Operation in Darfur) terminaba su mandato. Se pasaba así de una fuerza de mantenimiento de la paz circunscrita a Darfur, con unos 20.000 efectivos desplegados sobre el terreno, a una misión política con apenas 250 efectivos y mandato para operar en todo el país.

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