EU suspends migration cooperation with Sudan
EU money contributed to the rise of militia chief Hemeti (Press Release)
The Society for Threatened Peoples (STP) has accused the European Union (EU) of having promoted the rise of a mass murderer through its migration cooperation with Sudan. The commander of the infamous Rapid Support Forces (RSF) Mohamed Hamdan Dagolo, known as Hemeti, has become one of the most significant representatives of the security forces in the East African country. "This pact has not prevented refugees from fleeing East Africa to Libya and Europe. In Sudan, however, it has significantly increased Hemeti's influence in the Sudanese power apparatus – although his RSF militia is responsible for rape, pillaging, looting, massacres, and other crimes against humanity," stated STP Director Ulrich Delius in Göttingen on Monday. With this policy, the EU has done a disservice to democratisation and human rights in Sudan.
The human rights organisation is therefore calling for the permanent revocation of the migration pact, which had so far only been suspended for further examination. "Instead of promoting democracy and human rights in Sudan, the EU indirectly cooperated with a genocidal perpetrator, a serious burden for the democratic development of the country," Delius said. According to Delius, the EU failed to act in time. By now, Hemeti's influence can hardly be limited by a termination of the migration pact.
Even before the signing of the migration pact in 2015, the STP had warned against the strengthening of Hemeti and his RSF militia. Again and again, we informed the EU about attacks by the RSF on refugees in the course of patrolling the border to Libya; a task that was transferred to the RSF by the EU within the framework of the pact. But the EU did not react, and the accusations against the RSF were ignored.
"The decision to terminate the cooperation after four years – now that the RSF are also accused of purposefully killing innocent unarmed demonstrators of the democracy movement – was made much too late," Delius emphasized. For years, Hemeti was able to make his mark in Sudan by helping the Europe to fend off further refugees. Even though he did not receive money directly from the EU, the EU knew that the Sudanese government had entrusted the notorious RSF militia with central tasks in the scope of the migration pact.
Header image: Wiktor Dabkowski via Flickr