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UN Relocates Staff Out of Sudan

The UN Secretary-General on Monday welcomed the temporary relocation of hundreds of staff members and their families from the Sudanese capital Khartoum, amid the continuing intense fighting between rival military factions which has now entered its second week.

Speaking in the UN Security Council, Antonio Guterres said: “Let me be clear: the United Nations is not leaving Sudan. Our commitment is to the Sudanese people, in support of their wishes for a peaceful and secure future. We stand with them, at this terrible time.”

In a statement issued earlier, Guterres said the relocation exercise had been carried out “without incident”, adding that he appreciated the cooperation shown by Sudanese army personnel and paramilitaries from the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), allowing safe passage to Port Sudan, on the Red Sea.

“The Secretary-General reiterates his call on the parties to immediately cease hostilities and allow all civilians to evacuate from areas affected by the fighting.”

Mr. Guterres affirmed “the continued dedication” of the whole UN system, “to stand with, and work for, the Sudanese people, in support of their wishes for a peaceful, secure future and a return to the democratic transition.”

The warring factions had worked together since the ousting of long-term ruler Omar al-Bashir, four years ago, carrying out a military coup in a joint operation in 2021 which ended a military-civilian power sharing agreement. In recent months as negotiations over a return to civilian rule advanced, the two factions failed to agree an integration plan, on the road to the formation of a civilian government.

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