‘Crisis of epic proportions’ brewing in Sudan’s El-Fasher

The US envoy to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, who has been slammed for shielding Israel at the world body, has warned of an impending “large-scale massacre” in the Sudanese city of El Fasher, a humanitarian hub in the Darfur region, and urged countries including UAE to abandon support for the country’s warring parties.

The city “is on the precipice of a large-scale massacre. This is not conjecture. This is the grim reality facing millions of people,” Thomas-Greenfield told journalists following a UN Security Council meeting in Sudan on Monday.

“There are already credible reports that the RSF and its allied militias have razed multiple villages west of El Fasher, and as we speak, the RSF is planning an imminent attack on El Fasher,” which “would be a disaster on top of a disaster,” Thomas-Greenfield said.

Thomas-Greenfield, who is often seen raising her hand against UN resolutions that blast Israel’s actions in besieged Gaza, has come under severe criticism for defending Tel Aviv whose war on Gaza has already reached “genocidal proportions”, according to experts.

The city had until recently been relatively unaffected by fighting between the Sudanese Armed Forces [SAF] and the Rapid Support Forces [RSF], but bombardment and clashes have been reported both there and in surrounding villages since mid-April.

The US has also appealed to all countries — including the United Arab Emirates — to stop support for Sudan’s warring parties, the US envoy to the UN said, warning that a “crisis of epic proportions is brewing.”

“We do know that both sides are receiving support – both with weapons and other support – to fuel their efforts to continue to destroy Sudan and yes, we have engaged with the parties on that including with our colleagues from the UAE,” Thomas-Greenfield said.

UAE denies involvement in military support to any of Sudan’s rival parties.

“The United Arab Emirates … is not supplying any arms or ammunition to any faction engaged in the ongoing conflict in Sudan,” UAE Ambassador to the UN Mohamed Abushahab wrote to the Security Council on April 25.

UAE “categorically rejects any insinuation that it has extended financial, logistical, military assistance, or diplomatic support to any armed group in Sudan.”

Russian official meets Sudan military head

The development comes as Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov visited Sudan in a signal of support for the Sudanese army which is locked in a year-long war with the paramilitary RSF.

Bogdanov, also a special representative for the Middle East and Africa, met Sudanese army commander Abdel Fattah al Burhan in the Red Sea City of Port Sudan, a base for the army and government officials since the RSF took over large parts of the capital Khartoum early in the conflict.

There has been uncertainty around Russia’s allegiances in Sudan due to its ties with RSF commander Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, known as Hemedti, who visited Moscow on the eve of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022.

War erupted in Sudan one year ago between the SAF and RSF, creating the world’s largest displacement crisis. The UN has voiced concern in recent days about a possible imminent RSF attack on El Fasher.

The fight for the city a historic centre of power, could grow more protracted, inflame ethnic tensions that surfaced in the region 20 years ago and reach across Sudan’s border with Chad, say residents, aid agencies and analysts.

In the early 2000s the UN estimates some 300,000 people were killed in Darfur when “Janjaweed” militias — from which the RSF formed — helped the army crush a rebellion.

Top UN officials warned the Security Council this month that some 800,000 people in El Fasher were in “extreme and immediate danger”.



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