July 21, 2024

U.S. Condemns Horrific Atrocities Unleashed in Sudan’s Darfur Region

President Joe Biden delivers remarks on his economic agenda, Wednesday, April 19, 2023, at Operating Engineers Local 77, a union training facility in Accokeek, Maryland. (Official White House Photo by Adam Schultz)

The United States government has strongly condemned the continuing human rights violations, atrocities, and widespread violence in Sudan’s Darfur region.

In a statement on Thursday, Matthew Miller, spokesperson for the US State Department, said, “The United States condemns in the strongest terms the ongoing human rights violations and abuses and horrific violence in Sudan, especially reports of widespread sexual violence and killings based on ethnicity in West Darfur by the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and allied militias.”

According to local groups, the death toll in El Geneina alone has reached up to an estimated 1,100 civilians, with over 273,000 people displaced in West Darfur state, as reported by the United Nations. Disturbing satellite imagery has revealed the extent of the destruction, providing evidence of widespread devastation in settlements across West, South, and North Darfur states.

Miller cited the disproportionate impact on women, saying, “Women are bearing the brunt of this violence, and victims and human rights groups have credibly accused soldiers of the RSF and allied militias of rape and other forms of conflict-related sexual violence.”

“The atrocities occurring today in West Darfur and other areas are an ominous reminder of the horrific events that led the United States to determine in 2004 that genocide had been committed in Darfur,” he added.

Drawing attention to recent incidents, Miller explicitly condemned the killings, asserting, “We specifically condemn the killing of West Darfur Governor Khamis Abbakar on June 14 after he accused the RSF and other forces of perpetrating genocide. We also express our concern over reports that the brother of the sultan of the Masalit tribe and 16 others were killed in El Geneina on June 12.”

While acknowledging the primary responsibility of the RSF and affiliated militias, the spokesperson stressed that both sides have been involved in grave abuses. Miller noted, “In Darfur, the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) has failed to protect civilians and has reportedly stoked conflict by encouraging mobilization of tribes. SAF attacks by military aircraft or drones have also impeded humanitarian efforts.”

Calling for immediate action, Miller urged, “Both sides must cease fighting in the area, control their forces, and hold accountable those responsible for violence or abuses, and enable the delivery of desperately needed humanitarian assistance.”

The international community closely observes the worsening situation in Darfur, increasing pressure on all stakeholders to promptly address the crisis. The urgent need to halt the atrocities, ensure justice for the victims, and provide essential support and protection to the affected population remains paramount. The United States, along with other concerned nations, continues to express solidarity and call for immediate action to alleviate the suffering in Sudan’s beleaguered region.

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