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In Sudan, despite a truce agreed between the parties, fighting continues between the army and paramilitaries and the situation in the capital is still too dangerous. Like other Western countries, Italy is organizing the evacuation of our compatriots: about 200 are still stranded and military aircraft have already been deployed for them in Djibouti, the small military base-state nestled between Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia on the Gulf of Aden. Meanwhile, during the night the United States reached an agreement with the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and have already evacuated the staff of the embassy in Khartoum. France has also announced that it has started evacuation operations. Waiting to be able to leave also diplomats and citizens of Great Britain and China.
Tajani: “The government is doing whatever it takes”
“The message is that the government is doing whatever it takes” to ensure the safety of Italians in Sudan, Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani assured Sky TG24 last night. “We are in contact with the two factions, to support the truce and to push for a lasting ceasefire. In Djibouti there are already the transport planes of the 46th Air Brigade. Everything that needs to be done has been done. The government is following the situation minute by minute. We have to see how it evolves,” he added. We are therefore working on a repeat of the Afghanistan operation: this time, however, it is dedicated only to Italian citizens. In the past few hours, a meeting was held at Palazzo Chigi to prepare the emergency plan, with Tajani, Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, Undersecretary Alfredo Mantovano, the Chief of Defense Staff Giuseppe Cavo Dragone, General Francesco Paolo Figliuolo, responsible of the Joint Operational Command, and the heads of the Crisis Unit of the Farnesina and of the services. Meanwhile, the nightmare has ended for 19 Italian tourists surprised by the war while on a cruise in the waters of Port Sudan: as Tajani announced, they were able to land in Hurghada in Egypt.
The US embassy in Khartoum has been evacuated
Among the Khartoum embassies that have already been evacuated is the American one. During the night, the paramilitaries of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) announced that they had “coordinated” with the United States for the evacuation of “diplomats and their families”. In the morning, the US announced that it has completed operations with military aircraft and that the US embassy in Sudan is, at least temporarily, closed. Several foreign countries, including Italy, are preparing the evacuation of thousands of their fellow citizens, even if the main airport in Sudan remains closed. France, the Paris government said, has begun a “rapid evacuation operation” of its citizens and diplomatic personnel. European citizens and those of “allied partner countries” have also been taken into care, added the French foreign ministry, without providing other details. The RSF has promised “full cooperation with all diplomatic missions, providing all the necessary means of protection and guaranteeing their safe return to their countries”.
The situation in Sudan
Meanwhile, in Sudan the internet has stopped working in almost the whole country. The fighting between the paramilitary group and the army has entered its second week after a short break: hundreds are dead and thousands are injured, while the survivors are faced with a shortage of electricity and food. The fighting, after a temporary lull, has also resumed in the capital Khartoum. In particular, the Sudanese army led by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and the RFS paramilitaries of Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo are fighting for control of the country – unstable since 2019. The three-day truce agreed on Friday following US pressure to end Ramadan only lasted overnight.