After three and a half months of bloody war in Sudan, nearly 4 million people are seeking to flee. According to the UN, over 20 million inhabitants, out of the country’s total population of 48 million, are facing a food crisis.
“Over 20.3 million people, representing more than 42% of the country’s population”, one of the poorest in the world, are facing “acute food insecurity”. This is the alarm raised on Wednesday, August 2nd, by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations.
The number of people who have fled abroad due to the fighting in Sudan reaches around 930,000, while the number of internally displaced people exceeds 3 million, according to the latest report from the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
According to the FAO, the displacement caused by the war between the Sudanese army, led by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhane, and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), led by General Mohamed Hamdane Daglo, contributes to exacerbating the food insecurity.
The war has destroyed infrastructure and brought the agricultural sector to a halt, while before the war, one out of three Sudanese already suffered from hunger. Today, over half of Sudan’s population needs humanitarian assistance to survive, with NGOs and the UN claiming to be denied access.
According to the FAO, “6.3 million Sudanese are already in a situation of emergency (Phase 4) according to the UN’s Classification of Food Security (IPC), while Phase 5, the highest level, corresponds to a famine situation.
The fighting continues in Khartoum
In West Darfur, where violence is most intense and civilians are targeted based on their ethnicity, “over half of the population suffers from acute hunger,” according to the UN agency. In Khartoum, the fighting continues to disrupt the daily lives of several million residents, who are confined to their homes and subjected to severe shortages of water, food, and electricity in stifling heat.
An army spokesperson announced on Wednesday on television that airstrikes had “killed and injured dozens of rebels” in the south of the capital.
In 2021, the two generals together ousted the civilians with whom they shared power since the fall of Islamist dictator Omar al-Bashir in 2019.
However, differences emerged regarding the integration of the paramilitaries into the army, and since the start of the conflict, General Daglo has accused the army of trying to hasten the return of members of the now-banned National Congress party of Bashir.
On Wednesday, the paramilitary group once again accused the army of “conspiring” with the former regime.
The army is “covering up” the activities of officials from the National Congress, some of whom escaped from prison in the early weeks of the conflict to “reclaim power,” the RSF denounced.