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IGAD to Send Three Presidents to Mediate Crisis in Sudan

Smoke rises from the tarmac of Khartoum International Airport as a fire burns, in Khartoum
Smoke rises from the tarmac of Khartoum International Airport as a fire burns, in Khartoum

As Sudan was rocked by fighting for the third day in a row, IGAD – the Intergovernmental Authority on Development – said Kenyan President William Ruto, South Sudanese President Salva Kiir and Djibouti’s President Omar Guelleh will go to Khartoum in an effort to broker an immediate ceasefire.

“President Salva Kirr has already been in touch with both General Burhan and General Hemedti to convey the message of the summit yesterday // so now preparations are on the way to undertake this mission,” Nuur Mohamud Sheekh, a spokesperson for IGAD’s executive secretary, told VOA.

This comes after IGAD called for an immediate and unconditional cessation of hostilities between the warring parties in Sudan during an emergency virtual session of heads of states and government on Sunday, Sheekh said.

“They must stop fighting in civilian inhabited areas and open humanitarian corridors. So they [IGAD] constituted a committee of three heads of states who are highly experienced and knowledgeable on the Sudan situation to undertake a mission to visit Khartoum and reach out to all Sudanese stakeholders to make sure there’s cessation of hostilities and the parties return to dialogue.”

Sheekh said the conflict undermines the peace progress achieved over the last four months.

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He added that East African countries are closely linked, so any outbreak of violence in one country has security, economic, social, and humanitarian implications for its neighbors.

Fighting broke out on Saturday in the Sudanese capital Khartoum between the Sudan Armed Forces unit led by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, head of Sudan's transitional governing Sovereign Council, and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, led by General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, also known as Hemedti, who is deputy head of the council.

The clashes have so far left nearly 100 people dead and 600 hundreds injured according to The International Rescue Committee, which has since stopped its operations in most parts of the country.