Paris Summit Focuses on Aid Mobilization for Sudan: Top Diplomats Gather

Paris Summit Focuses on Aid Mobilization for Sudan
BBC

Paris Summit Focuses on Aid Mobilization for Sudan: Top Diplomats Gather

Sudan, grappling with a protracted conflict spanning over a year, stands on the precipice of famine as diplomats and humanitarian organizations convene in Paris to garner support. The conflict erupted in April last year between military and paramilitary forces, plunging the capital city of Khartoum and the entire nation into turmoil.

The situation is dire, with approximately 24 million Sudanese people in urgent need of assistance. Despite the United Nations’ humanitarian appeal for $2.7 billion, the response has been inadequate, leaving millions vulnerable to hunger and suffering.

Initially, efforts led by the United States and Saudi Arabia aimed to negotiate a resolution to the conflict. However, these efforts faltered, and since October, attention has shifted away from Sudan due to other regional crises, such as the Israel-Hamas conflict in Gaza. This has complicated the already challenging task of finding a peaceful solution to Sudan’s internal strife.

Meanwhile, humanitarian workers on the ground warn of an imminent famine of catastrophic proportions. Food production and distribution networks have been severely disrupted by the conflict, making it difficult for aid agencies to reach the most affected regions. The breakdown of these essential systems has exacerbated the risk of widespread starvation and mass death in the coming months.

The conflict itself has been characterized by numerous reports of atrocities, including killings, displacement, and sexual violence, particularly in and around the capital city and the western region of Darfur. The situation is dire, with an alarming 37% of the population experiencing severe hunger, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). Save the Children has issued a stark warning that approximately 230,000 vulnerable individuals, including children, pregnant women, and newborns, could perish due to malnutrition in the near future if urgent action is not taken.

The humanitarian crisis has also led to a massive displacement crisis, with nearly 9 million people forced to flee their homes either within Sudan or to neighboring countries. The military, led by General Abdel-Fattah Burhan, and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), under the command of General Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo, continue to engage in armed conflict within Khartoum, further exacerbating the suffering of the civilian population. In 2021, Burhan and Dagalo formed an uneasy alliance to overthrow Sudan’s internationally recognized civilian government, derailing the country’s path towards democratic transition.

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