“Two weeks after the fighting erupted between the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) – imposing fear, deprivation, trauma and suffering on the civilian population – the human rights situation in Sudan continues to dramatically deteriorate,” said Ravina Shamdasani, spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.
Thousands trapped in residential areas:
In a statement published by the Media Center of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, the UN spokesperson indicated that hundreds of thousands of people have fled their homes in search of safe places, while facing violations on the way, while thousands are still trapped in residential areas where
fighting is taking place, and they are facing air strikes and shelling and the use of heavy weapons, trying to use any period of calm to reach places of relative safety.
” People also continue to be forced from their homes by the RSF and suffer looting, extortion, acute shortages of food, water, electricity, fuel, limited access to healthcare, limited communication and limited cash due to the closure of banks,” Shamdasani added.
Clashes despite the ceasefire:
While a welcome ceasefire meant some reprieve in the fighting, clashes continue to be reported in densely populated areas of Khartoum, Bahri, Omdurman and towns in Darfur and North Kordofan, Shamdasani said.
Violence in Darfur:
Shamdasani expressed her concern about the serious danger of an escalation of violence in West Darfur; Hostilities between the RSF and the Sudanese Armed Forces have led to inter-tribal violence in El Geneina, West Darfur, where deadly ethnic clashes have been reported with an estimated 96 people killed since 24 April.
The UN spokesperson also expressed her fears about the release of prisoners in a number of prisons. This could lead to the possibility of further violence, amid a general climate of impunity.
UN calls for an immediate end to hostilities:
Shamdasani called on the Sudanese parties to immediately end hostilities, and in particular, to stop hostilities in residential areas and stop targeting the civilian population and infrastructure, as the protection of civilians must be a priority in the first place according to international humanitarian law.
The UN spokesperson stressed that after decades of oppression, armed conflict and deprivation, the people of Sudan should not be subjected to further violations of basic human rights, calling on all influential people to use all possible means to calm the situation and stand in solidarity with the Sudanese people in their demands for a peaceful and democratic future.
At the end of her statement, Shamdasani quoted the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Volker Türk, who “underscores the deep yearning and determination for freedom of the Sudanese people – who overthrew a military dictatorship of 30 years and resisted the subsequent military takeover with great courage. It is unfathomable that once again force is being used against them. The guns must be silenced and reason must prevail.”