Warnings of an escalation in Sudan were ignored

Baerbock should work towards an initiative for an end to the fighting

In view of the extremely threatening situation in Sudan – with hundreds of deaths, more than 1,000 injured people, and 200,000 refugees – the Society for Threatened Peoples (STP) made serious accusations against the international community on Friday, stating that warnings from democratic activists and international observers were ignored. According to Sarah Reinke, head of the STP’s human rights department, escalating tensions between the two Sudanese rulers, head of state Abdelfattah al-Burhan and his vice Mohamend Hamdan Dagolo (a.k.a. General Hemedti) had been foreseeable for a long time. “It was known that Hemedti is an extremely dangerous militia leader who commands around 70,000 men,” Reinke explained. “His name is closely connected to the genocide in Darfur. Nobody could be surprised that he would use violence to secure his power.” Further, the STP demanded Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock to work towards a dedicated and sustainable initiative that includes the democratic civil society, as this would be the only possibility to put an end to the fighting and to kick off a lasting peace and democracy process.

“After years of a failed Sudan policy, the international community must not let the suffering civilian population down,” the human rights organization stated in a letter to Baerbock. “Women’s organizations in the Sudanese capital informed us that there are dead bodies on the streets, hospitals were destroyed, and the electricity and water supply has partially collapsed.” The STP emphasized that the Sudanese people have been left at the mercy of brutal military forces too often, for example in the period from 2003 to 2019, when around 200,000 people were killed in the genocide of Darfur. In 2019, huge protests had put an end to the reign of longstanding dictator Omar Al Bashir. “Now, however, the people are living in fear that there will be another nationwide war. The EU and the UN must not leave the people of Sudan to the warlords and the militias again,” the STP demanded.   

We will be happy to establish contact with Ishan Fagiri. The Sudanese doctor and women’s rights activists was honored with the human rights award of the city of Weimar in 2019.