Press Releases Sudan: Statement by the Spokesperson on the Declaration of Commitment to protect civilians

Sudan: Statement by the Spokesperson on the Declaration of Commitment to protect civilians

The European Union welcomes the signature overnight by the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces of a declaration of commitment to protect civilians three weeks into a conflict which has already cost the lives of around 600 civilians, 190 of whom were children. The EU appreciates the determined efforts of Saudi and American negotiators to broker the deal in Jeddah.

While the declaration refers to respect for the Geneva Convention and international humanitarian law, the European Union recalls that the protection of civilians and safe access for humanitarian assistance are already legally binding obligations and have been so since the beginning of the conflict. The value of the declaration will depend entirely on whether it is honoured by the parties and transforms the situation on the ground. The UN Human Rights Council highlighted yesterday the need for accountability and gave the UN High Commissioner’s designated expert on Human Rights in Sudan a mandate to document all allegations of human rights violations and abuses, including those arising directly from the current conflict.

The Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces committed yesterday to scheduling discussions on a permanent cessation of hostilities. While all efforts to stop the fighting are welcome, a sustainable ceasefire, rather than a schedule for it, is an urgent and overdue imperative.

The European Union will continue to work with international and regional partners on a consolidated mediation platform that can deliver a ceasefire and a return to the civilian rule that the people of Sudan have been demanding since the revolution of 2019.

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