The UAE Must Stop Sponsoring the RSF Militia in Sudan

The UAE Must Stop Sponsoring the RSF Militia in Sudan

The UAE Must Stop Sponsoring the RSF Militia in Sudan. The UAE’s support for the RSF militia is a violation of foreign territorial sovereignty, prohibited under international law.

In April 2023, war broke out in Sudan between the Sudanese National Army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), killing thousands and displacing millions. As the fighting has spread, many now fear that the entire country could be plunged into a full-blown war.

This war has its investors and beneficiaries; for years, the UAE has pursued its narrow interests by providing the RSF with a lifeline of money and weapons to carry out its genocide in Darfur. It’s time for the world to put pressure on the UAE to stop perpetuating this vicious cycle of violence.

The UAE Must Stop Sponsoring the RSF Militia in Sudan

The RSF was primarily created in 2013 by restructuring the notorious Janjaweed militia to support the central government’s counterinsurgency operations in Darfur and South Kordofan. In 2017, the Sudanese parliament passed a law legitimizing its activities, even though the militia has reportedly committed countless crimes and atrocities, including the destruction of villages, the killing of protesters, sexual assault and rape, and the unlawful detention of activists.

The UAE’s support for the militia comes in various forms, from direct funding to logistics and military equipment. In December 2019, an investigative report revealed that the militia received vehicles from the UAE that could be easily modified and equipped with machine guns. The report also revealed how UAE-based front companies, such as Tradive, were used to channel the funds to the militia.

Escalated military support

During the ongoing war, and in flagrant violation of the UN arms embargo resolution, the UAE escalated its military support to the militias through Chad, where, under the guise of a humanitarian operation, it established an airport and a hospital to transfer weapons and ammunition to the militias and to treat militia fighters. The national army reportedly destroyed a UAE military shipment to the militia in Nyala, South Darfur.

According to military sources, the shipment included drones, ammunition, advanced rocket launchers, and sophisticated communications systems. At the beginning of the war, the RSF militia received military aid from the Wagner Group through the al-Khadim airbase in eastern Libya, which was controlled by General Haftar, the notorious UAE-backed warlord. According to the U.S. Treasury Department, the Wagner Group also supplied the RSF with surface-to-air missiles.

The UAE is also the hub for the RSF militia’s social media team, which the militia brothers run to disinform the world about their ongoing genocides and violations. Previously, an investigative report revealed that a Dubai-based private equity firm was helping the militia lobby British parliamentarians and influence their opinions about the RSF militia’s crimes in the ongoing war.

The UAE support extends to diplomatic and political support for the militia. For example, the UAE has so far failed to cooperate and implement the sanctions imposed by the U.S. on the companies and leaders of the RSF militia. The UAE is also a safe haven for the militias’ leader. Recently, Dagalo made his first appearance since the outbreak of the war; flight records show that he arrived in Addis Ababa on a royal jet that had flown from Abu Dhabi to Uganda’s Entebbe International Airport.


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