Sudan crisis risks becoming a nightmare for the world – former PM Hamdok
The former Prime Minister of Sudan warns that conflict in his country may become worse than in Syria and Libya
Abdalla Hamdok has said that the fights will continue to be a nightmare for the entire world if they continue.
The Sudanese army says it is attacking the capital Khartoum from all directions, using heavy artillery.
Nearly two weeks of fighting have left hundreds dead and tens of thousands of people fleeing the country.
The extension of the uneasy ceasefire on Thursday night between rival factions was the result of intensive diplomatic efforts made by the US, UK, and UN, as well as neighboring countries.
The 72-hour extension was not implemented. According to reports, air, tank, and artillery attacks continue in some parts of Khartoum.
At a conference held in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, Mr. Hamdok called on the international community to unite its efforts to convince the Sudanese leader of the military and the head of a rival paramilitary group to engage in peace talks.
“This is a huge country, very diverse … I think it will be a nightmare for the world,” he said.
“This is not a war between an army and a small rebellion. It is almost like two armies – well trained and well armed.”
Mr. Hamdok – who served as prime minister twice between 2019 and 2022 – added that the insecurity could become worse than the civil wars in Syria and Libya. Those wars have led to hundreds of thousands of deaths, created millions of refugees, and caused instability in the wider regions.
The fighting in Sudan broke out on 15 April as the result of a bitter power struggle between the regular army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF).
Army commander Gen Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and RSF chief Gen Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, better known as Hemedti, disagree about the country’s proposed move to civilian rule, and in particular about the timeframe of the 100,000 strong RSF’s inclusion into the army.
Both factions fear losing power in Sudan, partly because on both sides there are men who could end up at the International Criminal Court for war crimes committed in the Darfur region almost 20 years ago.
Millions of people remain trapped in Khartoum, where there are shortages of food, water, and fuel.
Sudan’s army has urged people in Khartoum to remain indoors and stay away from windows, as it deploys tanks and other artillery in an effort to recapture areas held by the RSF.
The RSF says the army is widening the conflict by deploying the Central Reserve police – a unit with a reputation for brutality against civilians.
Violence is also reported to have been particularly bad in El Geneina, a city in Darfur in western Sudan, with claims that militia groups have looted and torched markets.