Sudan Is On The Brink Of A New Catastrophe – Analysis

Sudan Is On The Brink Of A New Catastrophe – Analysis

On Tuesday, December 19, Sudan’s second largest city, Wad Madani, fell to one of the most brutal armed groups worldwide. This made few headlines in a world obsessed with the fighting in Gaza.

The Sudanese war — which erupted in April this year — has pitted the Sudanese Armed Forces against the Rapid Support Forces (RSF). On the surface, it was no more than a quarrel between two generals. However, behind the military men are a range of outside forces. While the army has been the traditional bastion of the state, the RSF grew out of the notorious Janjaweed, a notorious Sudanese Arab militia charged with genocide for its activities in Sudan’s western region of Darfur.

As Kate Ferguson of Protection Approaches wrote:

“The RSF is the Janjaweed rebranded, the “devils on horseback” used by the Sudanese government from 2003 to implement widespread and systematic crimes against non-Arab communities across Darfur. The RSF was, and still is, commanded by Gen Mohamed Hamdan “Hemedti” Dagalo.” 

The war is a tragedy for the Sudanese people. It has forced an estimated 6.7 million people to flee from their homes. According toaid agencies, this is “the largest displacement crisis globally.” Although apparently no more than a regional issue, Sudan’s conflict has the potential to reshape the politics of the region, with implications for the entire Middle East.

That reshaping might come later. At the moment, the humanitarian crisis is dire and can be grasped from two maps. The first map, by theInternational Organisation for Migration, shows where the population has fled.

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