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‘African leaders need to step in’ — Chadian president asks Buhari to intervene in Sudan crisis

Mahamat Idriss Déby, transitional President of Chad, has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene in the ongoing Sudan crisis.

A violent power struggle between Sudan’s army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), a paramilitary group, has killed nearly 100 people — almost double the casualties from Sunday.

Ongoing tensions had heightened on Saturday after heavy gunfire and explosion were witnessed in Khartoum, Sudan’s capital.

The RSF accused the army of ambushing its forces with heavy weaponry and attacks. The army denied the allegations and said the RSF was trying to seize the military headquarters.

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Mohamed Dagalo, RSF leader, said his troops would keep fighting until all army bases were captured.

In response, Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, Sudan’s military head, ruled out negotiations “until the dissolution of the paramilitary RSF”.

In a statement on Monday, Garba Shehu, presidential spokesperson, said Déby asked Buhari and other African leaders to step into the situation.

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The Chadian leader said steps to contain the conflict were necessary because “if not arrested, it will have serious repercussions on neighbouring countries”.

Déby said his country had closed its borders to Sudan and reinforced security in response to the crisis.

“I have spoken to the leaders of both factions. If everyone tries, it will calm down the situation,” he said.

“African leaders, especially the elders (President Buhari), Macky Sall (Senegal), and AU chairperson Azali Assoumani (Comoros) need to step in. For two days, they have been killing themselves.”

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Buhari described the conflict in Sudan as unfortunate. He said the north African country deserved peace after all that it had gone through in the past.

He commended the Chadian leader for his efforts to see an end to the crisis, adding that relentless efforts from neighbouring countries and the international community to prevail on the warring sides to stop fighting and negotiate would bring the desired calm.

 

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