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SUDAN - 13 Sep 2023

UN’s Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan horrified by Khartoum killings

Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan, Clementine Nkweta-Salami. (UN photo)
Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan, Clementine Nkweta-Salami. (UN photo)

The United Nation’s (UN) Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan, Clementine Nkweta-Salami, in a statement on Wednesday, said she is appalled by the killing of dozens of civilians in an attack on a crowded market in southern Khartoum on Sunday, 10 September 2023.

According to Sudanese activists and a medical group, at least 43 people were killed on Sunday during an aerial attack on an open market south of the capital, Khartoum, More than 55 others were wounded in the attack in Khartoum’s May neighborhood, where the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) who are battling the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) were heavily deployed.

“Scores more were injured, many of them critically,” the UN’s Nkweta-Salami said. “This incident is just the latest example of the daily horrors that civilians in Sudan continue to face, especially in highly populated areas.”

The UN statement said that four months ago, the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) signed the Jeddah Declaration of Commitment to Protect the Civilians of Sudan. The very first commitment outlined in that document reads: “We agree that the interests and well-being of the Sudanese people are our top priority and affirm our commitment to ensure that civilians are protected at all times.”

“The ongoing killing of civilians in Khartoum, Nyala, Al Fasher, and other areas underscores the fact that the parties to this conflict are not honoring the pledges they signed up to on 11 May or the fundamental rules of international law underpinning them,” the statement read. “This includes the obligation to take all feasible precautions to avoid and minimize civilian harm and refrain from any disproportionate attack.”

“I call on the SAF, RSF, and all armed actors participating in the armed conflict to respect international humanitarian law and take immediate steps to safeguard civilians,” Nkweta-Salami said. “The people of Sudan have suffered far too much already.”