UK urges Sudanese warring rivals to protect aid workers

UK urges Sudanese warring rivals to protect aid workers

The United Kingdom’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Simon Manly, called on the Sudanese warring parties to secure the humanitarian workers in the country.

According to the Sudan Tribune, Manly, in a statement to the United Nations Human Rights Council on Tuesday, urged the warring parties to hold their personnel accountable when they go against these principles.

At least 44 UN countries signed the Joint Statement on Sudan Humanitarian Access on behalf of the Troika—the USA, Norway and the United Kingdom.

The signatories welcomed the organisation of a humanitarian conference for Sudan and neighbouring countries next month in Paris, saying the ongoing conflict has had catastrophic humanitarian consequences for the people of Sudan.

Nearly 18 million people are suffering from crisis-level food insecurity. Humanitarian workers are blocked from reaching the people in need.  The longer this conflict lasts, and the further fighting spreads, the greater that need will become.

“We call on all parties to accept a Ramadan ceasefire, in line with Security Council Resolution 2724,” the statement read in part.

The statement said the Sudanese Armed Forces’ (SAF) withdrawal of permission for aid deliveries through the major crossing points from Chad into Darfur is indefensible, and has exacerbated the suffering in Darfur, where civilians are already in dire need after suffering relentless atrocities by the Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

“We call on the SAF to fully uphold their commitments to facilitate cross-line and cross-border operations, re-open fully the vital Ader crossing point, and refrain from any measures that prevent life-saving aid reaching those in need,” it stated.

According to the joint statement, the vital work of local responders, UN agencies, and international partners must be allowed to proceed without any interference.

“We call on all parties to comply with their obligations under international humanitarian law and the Jeddah Declaration, and to allow full, rapid, safe, and unhindered cross-border and cross-line humanitarian access, so that we can, collectively, protect Sudan’s people from even more suffering and death,” it stressed.

Concerns have been raised about the likely increase in the levels of food security in Sudan if humanitarian assistance is prevented from reaching the needy.