Humanitarian situation particularly dire in Khartoum and Darfur as clashes impede aid

People displaced from Khartoum find makeshift shelter in Port Sudan, May 10 (Mohamed Elamin / WFP)


Sudanese and international organisations report an increasingly worsening human tragedy in Sudan due to the war that has entered its seventh week despite a fragile ceasefire, which is due to end today. Especially Khartoum and Darfur are facing dire situations as ongoing fighting prevents aid supplies from reaching residents.

Voluntary agencies said that they are finding it very difficult to deliver humanitarian aid due to the continued fighting.

Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) even warned that “without urgent measures, we may be forced to stop our life-saving operations in many parts of the country,” the director of Humanitarian Operations at the Brussels Operations Centre told Radio Dabanga.

MSF called on the parties to the conflict in Sudan to ensure that humanitarian aid reaches those in need.

Humanitarian aid

The Sudanese Ministry of Health announced that about 690 tonnes of humanitarian aid supplies have arrived in Sudan since the outbreak of the violence, including 367 tonnes of medical supplies.

The Minister of Social Development, Ahmed Bakheet, said in a press statement yesterday that there are no obstacles facing the flow of humanitarian aid supplies to the states of Sudan, except to Khartoum and Darfur where ongoing clashes are taking place.

Bakheet said that the Governor of Darfur, Minni Minawi, is ready to secure the flow of aid to Darfur and stressed the urgent need for aid in the areas of El Geneina and Zalingei specifically.

Zalingei catastrophe

Mustafa Tambour, head of the Sudan Liberation Movement faction SLM-Tambour, told Radio Dabanga said that Zalingei, capital of Central Darfur, will soon witness a humanitarian catastrophe as food reserves are depleted.

Telephone and internet connections have been cut for more than a week.

Tambour explained that the RSF attempted to take control of the military base in the city in the past days, but the army have been able to repel the attacks.

RSF paramilitaries, nevertheless, plundered various institutions and neighbourhoods in the city. “The situation in Zalingei is catastrophic and the people need urgent humanitarian intervention.”

Medical shortages

Medical doctor Ahmed Abdelrahman told radio Dabanga that the humanitarian situation in Khartoum and El Gezira has become extremely dire.

“In Wad Madani [capital of El Gezira] alone, our teams conducted more than a thousand medical consultations within two weeks and the surgical teams performed more than 400 surgical interventions in Khartoum.

He said that a large number of doctors have been displaced due to the situation in Sudan. Many doctors have fled to neighbouring countries, which overburdened the remaining medical staff who worked beyond their capacity.

“We are also in urgent need of medical supplies to reach those in need in the area that are affected most.”

The Sudanese Doctors Union also stated that the Teaching Hospital in the El Obeid, capital of North Kordofan, is threatened with closure again because the army entered the hospital on Friday. They threatened to close the hospital if medics receive or treat any members of the RSF.

The hospital had received two injured paramilitaries on Friday and medical staff performed their duty to treat them.