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G7 Joint Statement Strongly Condemns the Fighting in Sudan

This satellite photo from Planet Labs PBC shows damaged aircraft, including one on fire, at Khartoum International Airport in Khartoum, Sudan, April 17, 2023.
This satellite photo from Planet Labs PBC shows damaged aircraft, including one on fire, at Khartoum International Airport in Khartoum, Sudan, April 17, 2023.

The Group of Seven has strongly denounced the ongoing fighting in Sudan between two military factions, urging all parties to “end hostilities immediately without pre-conditions.”

Tuesday, G-7 foreign ministers released a joint communique after meeting two and half days in Karuizawa, Japan.

“We strongly condemn the ongoing fighting between the Sudan Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), which threatens the security and safety of Sudanese civilians and undermines efforts to restore Sudan’s democratic transition,” said the G-7 joint statement.

“We call on all actors to renounce violence, return to negotiations, and take active steps to reduce tensions and ensure the safety of all civilians, including diplomatic and humanitarian personnel.”

The joint statement came amid reports that an armored US embassy vehicle was targeted by forces associated with the RSF fighters during the surge of violence in Khartoum. Monday, the European Union said its envoy to Sudan was assaulted in his own residence.

“I can confirm that yesterday, we had an American diplomatic convoy that was fired on. All of our people are safe and unharmed. But this action was reckless. It was irresponsible. And of course, unsafe,” Blinken told VOA during a news conference upon the conclusion of G7 ministers’ meetings.

Tuesday, Blinken spoke separately with General Abdel Fattah al Burhan, commander of the Sudanese Armed Forces, and General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, known as Hemedti, commander of the Rapid Support Forces, urging them to agree to a 24-hour ceasefire to allow Sudanese to safely reunite with their families and to obtain desperately needed relief supplies.

Blinken said he made it very clear to both Burhan and Hemedti that “any attacks, threats or dangers posed to our diplomats were totally unacceptable.”

The White House has said there are no plans yet for a U.S. government evacuation.

Blinken also said Tuesday that the State Department will continue to “take every responsible measure to make sure that our people are safe and secure,” when asked by VOA if there is an evacuation plan given the latest development on the ground.

Both military factions fighting for control in Sudan's capital, Khartoum, claimed to have made gains, as the death toll from the violence exceeded 180 amid calls from Washington, multiple international bodies and capitals around the world for an immediate cease-fire.

In Washington, U.S. lawmakers also weighed in, condemning the fighting in Sudan between the army and paramilitary forces.

“The Biden Administration must take immediate steps to sanction Generals Burhan and Hemedti, and other senior security officials, push the international community to do the same,” said U.S. Senator Jim Risch, a Republican from Idaho who is ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

“Ultimately, the only way to achieve peace and stability in Sudan is through meaningful political discussion and the return of a civilian-led transition that respects the rights and aspirations of the Sudanese people. Continued fighting risks dragging the country back into civil war and threatens the stability not only of Sudan, but the entire region,” said Democratic Senator from Delaware Chris Coons in a statement.

Katherine Gypson contributed to this report.