Saudi Arabia and the United States have mediated a seven-day cease-fire between the warring factions in Sudan. Representatives from both Army Chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and his former deputy Mohamed Hamdan Daglo signed the ceasefire agreement in Jeddah, where they also promised not to seek any military advantage before it begins at 21:45 local time on Monday night.
“It will be automatically renewed until we reach a permanent cease-fire through mechanisms we will discuss in the coming days to achieve confidence between the parties and for more humanitarian services for the Sudanese citizens,” said Ali Jafar, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Sudan.
There have been a number of declared ceasefires since the conflict started five weeks ago, but both sides have quickly ignored them. And even after the most recent truce was established, air strikes and artillery exchanges jolted Khartoum on Saturday, and armed men ransacked the Qatari embassy.
“This Sudanese blood is precious to you more than anyone else, and you know the importance of saving it,” said Prince Faisal bin Farhan, the foreign minister of Saudi Arabia, after the deal was completed on Saturday. “I hope this agreement will be a hope for the Sudanese people, especially the people of Khartoum,” he continued, “in which they can finish their humanitarian services in the seven days, and hopefully, it will be more.”
More than a million people have been forced from their homes as a result of the violence, which has resulted in the deaths of hundreds of individuals, the vast majority of whom were innocent civilians. The humanitarian crisis is getting worse in Sudan, which is the third-largest country in Africa. Before the fighting broke out, one in every three people in the country was already dependent on help. However, now that the war has started, this number has increased.
The announcement of a truce on Saturday comes two weeks after representatives of the warring generals met in Jeddah for the first time to discuss the conflict. As of the 11th of May, they had signed a promise to observe humanitarian values and permit the entry of aid that was desperately needed.
However, UN assistance head Martin Griffiths told AFP on Thursday that there had been “important and egregious” violations of that deal, which fell short of being a ceasefire.