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200,000 Fled Sudan in First Month of Fighting Between Rival Military Factions

HeadlineMay 16, 2023

In Sudan, military forces unleashed airstrikes near a hospital in the capital Khartoum Monday targeting paramilitary rivals as fighting between the warring parties enters a second month. Airstrikes and shelling were reported in other cities in recent days, including intense battles in the western region of Darfur and in the cities of Bahri and Omdurman. The U.N. estimates some 200,000 people have fled Sudan to neighboring countries since the war erupted in April, with the vast majority of those displaced being women and children, many of whom are malnourished. Hundreds of people who’ve escaped the violence in the capital to relatively safe cities like Port Sudan now face shortages of food, water and shelter as extreme heat hits the region.

Akomo Oloj: “People, they don’t like us to be here. And now the way we are here with the children and the mothers, some of them are sick. And there’s no food. People, they can’t eat. So we are suffering.”

Over 600 people have reportedly died since the beginning of the conflict, though the death toll is expected to be much higher. Prominent Sudanese singer Shaden Gardood was killed in crossfire between the Sudanese army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces in Omdurman city Friday, despite an agreement between the two sides to protect civilians. Meanwhile, there’s been multiple reports of women and girls being sexually assaulted by armed groups.

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