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APO International

A new report released by the International Rescue Committee (IRC) highlights the world’s failure to address the ever-worsening humanitarian catastrophe in Sudan

todayJune 25, 2024 10

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IRC’s 2024 Emergency Watchlist identified Sudan as the humanitarian crisis most at risk of deteriorating this year. In response to the lack of attention on the crisis, the IRC has released a mid-year Crisis Alert on Sudan. The new report illustrates the trajectory of a country in freefall. Without a shift in the international approach from inertia to action, Sudan risks being torn apart by the conflict, with dire implications for millions of civilians, and regional security. Sudan is already the world’s worst displacement crisis and is rapidly becoming the world’s worst hunger crisis as well.

The alert highlights how military decision makers, regional powers, and the international community have all failed the people of Sudan, resulting in an ever-worsening humanitarian catastrophe that has left more than half the population – nearly 25 million people – in need of humanitarian aid. It analyses why the conflict has continued to escalate and spread, outlines how severe constraints on humanitarian access contribute to a response that is failing to meet needs, and provides recommendations to drive an urgently needed diplomatic and humanitarian course correction. The report pushes for tilting of scales towards peace, not more war, and an overall reset of the humanitarian response.

Civilians in Sudan are already facing  threats to their lives and now the risk of famine is looming. Warring parties continue to block access for data collection meaning famine may never be officially declared. However, people are already dying from hunger and without an immediate halt in fighting and scale-up of humanitarian assistance, the  worst levels of food insecurity (IPC5) are expected in many parts of the country over the coming months. 

Conservative estimates say that at least 15,500 people have already died from the conflict, while some estimates are as high as 150,000, and counting. Over 222,000 children are predicted to die of starvation in the coming months if no quick action is taken. Confirmed deaths in mass killings are much lower than the fatality estimates from the – US described – genocide in 2003-2005. However more people have been displaced, which suggests similar levels of violence. According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), over 10 million people are internally displaced within Sudan, while at least another 2 million have fled to neighbouring countries, including South Sudan, Chad, Egypt, Ethiopia, Uganda and the Central African Republic.

On June 13, the U.N. Security Council passed a resolution calling for an immediate halt to the fighting and de-escalation in and around El Fasher, and for enhanced measures to protect civilians and healthcare from attack. Concerted diplomatic efforts are now needed to ensure warring parties implement these steps. 

Eatizaz Yousif, IRC Country Director for Sudan, said,

“After more than a year of war, the people of Sudan—my people—are experiencing suffering on a massive scale. Millions of lives have been turned upside down, children’s education has all but stopped, basic services like hospitals and banks have ceased to function in many parts of the country, and families are having to make impossible choices to feed their children. The world has chosen to ignore the suffering in Sudan for too long, many civilians have been killed and numerous towns have been destroyed, including the capital Khartoum There has been no adequate interventions to halt the conflict.

The already catastrophic humanitarian situation demands renewed efforts to bring an end to the fighting and to ensure humanitarians can do their jobs. Across Sudan, millions of people are denied the assistance they need due to fighting and delays and barriers to aid delivery, for which warring parties are responsible. 

As the civil war in Sudan escalates and the humanitarian disaster deepens, it continues to spill over into neighbouring countries – like Chad and South Sudan that are already facing their own challenges. Urgent support is also needed to ensure those that have fled the country, and the communities that host them, receive the support they need until they can return home.

The IRC’s mid-year alert sets out clear recommendations for action that, if implemented, would tilt the scales towards peace and drive much needed reforms to the way aid is supported, implemented and funded. We know what needs to change, so there are no excuses for inaction.”

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of International Rescue Committee (IRC) .



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