Statement by the Special Representative of the Secretary General for Sudan on violence in El Geneina
The Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Sudan and Head of the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS), Mr. Volker Perthes, welcomes the 72-hour ceasefire between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces brokered by the United States on 24 April, although noting that it is not being fully respected by the parties to the conflict. He calls on both sides to fully adhere to the ceasefire and facilitate humanitarian access.
SRSG Perthes is deeply concerned by recent reports of violence in El Geneina (West Darfur), which increasingly appears to also be taking on inter-communal dimensions with attacks on civilians and looting and distribution of weapons among local communities. The attacks have also resulted in other mass looting, including of UN premises.
The parties to the conflict must bring an end to this conflict immediately before the situation further escalates.
The SRSG urges all parties to uphold their obligations under international humanitarian law and ensure the protection of civilians and civilian infrastructure. He also calls for the protection of UN and humanitarian personnel, premises and assets.
Mr. Volker Perthes further recalls that it is crucial for civilians to be able to safely leave areas of active hostilities and to have access to essential supplies.
He welcomes ongoing efforts by local authorities in the region to de-escalate tensions, and calls for these efforts to be urgently strengthened.
The Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Sudan will continue to use his good offices to work with all parties towards a sustained ceasefire with a monitoring mechanism, political negotiations, and to alleviate human suffering.