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World Food Programme Sudan External Situation Report #03: 21 May 2023 – Sudan


May 26, 2023



  • A seven-day ceasefire was agreed to take effect between the two parties at 21:45 local time (GMT+2) on 22 May, on the heels of General Abdel Fattah al Burhan issuing a decree for immediate removal of General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo from his Vice Presidency of the Sovereign Council.

  • Concerns around detention and issuance of importation clearances of commodities, authorizations for interstate crossing and staff arrivals in-country, and issuance of landing permits to Ethiopia and Eritrea threatens operations nationwide. Lootings and attacks on WFP facilities and transport in White Nile, and Central Darfur reported at the turn of the week.

  • WFP reached nearly 458,000 individuals with in-kind and nutrition support, almost half of the initially targeted 991,000, with South Darfur among the newly reached; access to Blue Nile, Central Darfur and Northern Darfur in the works. This marks the first instance for WFP Sudan to provide unconditional assistance in Wadi Halfa at the Egyptian-Sudanese border, with plans for Port Sudan and Khartoum under consideration.

  • 33,870MTs of sorghum from USAID Bureau of Humanitarian Assistance arrived. Over 169,000MTs of assorted commodities can be secured from local suppliers, and more than 191,000MTs can be sourced from the Global Commodity Management Facility, pending availability of financial resources.

  • United Nations launched a joint appeal of USD 3 billion for the revised Humanitarian Response Plan and the Sudan Regional Refugee Response Plan. Meanwhile, over USD 730 million needed by WFP Sudan to resume and scale-up operations in these six months alone; UN Humanitarian Air Services requires a minimum of USD 77 million until end-year while the Emergency Telecommunications Cluster requires USD 6.3 million.

Situation update

While the fighting in the capital intensified, negotiations between the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) and Rapid Support Forces (RSF) resumed in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on 14 May towards reaching a permanent cessation of hostilities. On 20 May, the warring factions agreed on a seven-day ceasefire that comes into effect at 21:45 local time (GMT+2) today, overseen by a United States, Saudi and international-support monitoring mechanism. This agreement calls for distributing humanitarian assistance, restoring essential services and withdrawing forces from medical and other public facilities.

Against this backdrop, multiple changes to leadership were executed within the SAF, General Intelligence Services (GIS) and Sudanese Police Force. On 19 May, General Abdel Fattah al Burhan, issued a decree firing General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo with immediate effect. As part of this exercise, the Governor of the Central Bank of Sudan was sacked, and four generals were temporarily moved to the paramilitary forces. Amid revived tribal political tensions, notably in Geneina and Zalingei, the Regional Governor of Darfur announced the establishment of a joint force composed of representatives from the signatories of the Juba Peace Agreement, seeking to protect civilians and main connective roads and facilitate delivery of assistance.

An inter-agency Access Working Group held its first meeting on 15 May, seeking to develop access guidelines and an engagement framework. A Civil-Military Coordination Working Group was also established the day after, with the objective of initiating and maintaining an appropriate relationship between humanitarian and military actors.

Security incidents, barriers to security-related clearances for travel and entry of security equipment have been rife. On 16 May, an airstrike hit the road in front of WFP Sudan premises in Khartoum, causing damage to the external prefab, with RSF observed to maintain its presence outside of the compound. On 17 May, a group of Beja tribesmen held a demonstration in front of the Wali’s office and Coral Hotel in Port Sudan. Simultaneously, instances of detention of commodities, delays in authorizations for interstate crossing, remains a major concern.

Meanwhile, on 15 May, six trucks transporting food were partially looted on the western part of White Nile, with amounts to yet be verified. Further, on 18-19 May, unidentified armed perpetrators on motorbikes (and local community members thereafter) attacked and looted the WFP office and guesthouse in Zalingei, Central Darfur.
The current estimated value of losses incurred by WFP Sudan to such incidents since the beginning of the civil unrest is over USD 56 million, with calculations on the impact of the recent incidents still underway.

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