Sudan: Joint Statement by High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell and Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarčič on the attacks in El Fasher

Human Rights

High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell and Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič, have issued the following statement:

“The intensification of fighting in the outskirts and within El Fasher, Sudan, is aggravating an already catastrophic humanitarian situation and having a dramatic impact on civilians.

We strongly condemn the indiscriminate attacks from both sides, including on the Babiker Nahar Paediatric Hospital. We are extremely concerned about the lack of medical supplies and medicines at Al Fasher South Hospital, which is the only functioning hospital in the entire state. Since April 2023, the parties to the conflict have been blocking the delivery of aid and denying assistance to the more than 800,000 civilians trapped in El Fasher.

We remind the warring parties of their obligation under international humanitarian law to protect civilians. Denying access to food, healthcare and humanitarian assistance is a clear violation of international law, which may constitute war crimes.

We renew our call to the parties to the conflict to allow the immediate, unconditional, and unhindered delivery of humanitarian assistance to the entire territory and population. We are appalled to read from OCHA that so far in 2024, only 39 humanitarian trucks reached El Fasher, limiting drastically the flow of aid and depriving hundreds of people in need from lifesaving assistance.

We urge the belligerents to end the armed conflict across Sudan and de-escalate hostilities around El Fasher. We remain committed to ensure that those who commit atrocities, those in leadership who obstruct the delivery of humanitarian aid and fail in their obligations to protect the civilians will be held accountable for their actions. 

The EU will continue to use its entire toolbox, including targeted sanctions to halt the culture of impunity in the country and to move towards a peaceful resolution of the conflict.”

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