This article summarizes the UN Report on how the Sudanese militias committed serious humanitarian and human rights violations against the civilians

 

Introduction 

This Report, detailed by Human Rights Watch, highlights severe and ongoing human rights abuses in the country, particularly in the Darfur region. The conflict, which escalated in April 2023, has led to widespread violence, including ethnically targeted killings, sexual violence, and large-scale displacement. Atrocities that have been perpetrated by the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and allied militias of the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF), declared to be primarily responsible for these cruelties, targeting predominantly ethnic Massalit civilians and other non-Arab minorities. 

 

Widespread Violence and Ethnic Cleansing

  • The conflict, primarily between the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), has led to significant violence, particularly targeting the Massalit and other non-Arab communities in El Geneina, the capital of West Darfur. The RSF and allied Arab militias have been accused of carrying out systematic ethnic cleansing, including mass killings, sexual violence, and torture​. 

Data and Humanitarian Crisis

  • Over 300,000 people are displaced and have fled from Darfur to Chad, with many others internally displaced within Sudan. The violence has disrupted access to essential services, including healthcare and humanitarian aid. Numerous attacks on medical facilities and aid workers have further exacerbated the crisis. 

Sexual Violence

  • The Report identifies a significant increase in conflict-related sexual violence, particularly in areas like El Geneina and Khartoum. Survivors face numerous barriers to accessing care due to attacks on healthcare infrastructure and social stigma​. UN in Sudan states that by 15 December 2023, at least 118 people had been subjected to sexual violence, including rape, gang rape, and attempted rape, among them 19 children.  

Lack of Accountability

  • Despite the gravity of the situation, the Report highlights the limited action from the international community. The UN Security Council has been criticized for its inadequate response, and there have been calls for expanded arms embargoes and targeted sanctions against those responsible for the atrocities. The International Criminal Court (ICC) is investigating the recent atrocities as part of its ongoing Darfur investigation​. 

Survivor Accounts

  • Eyewitness accounts describe harrowing experiences of ethnic cleansing in El Geneina, where systematic and coordinated attacks by RSF and SAF targeted Massalit civilians. The violence included executions, mass killings, and the use of heavy weaponry against civilian areas. Many survivors have fled to refugee camps in Chad, where they continue to face harsh conditions​. 

Recommendations for International Action

The report urges the international community to take concrete steps to prevent further atrocities, including deploying additional UN staff for monitoring, imposing sanctions, and ensuring humanitarian aid can reach those in need. The UN Security Council is called upon to provide greater scrutiny and take decisive action to protect civilians and promote accountability​. As the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk said: “The guns must be silenced, and civilians must be protected”.  

For a comprehensive understanding of the situation, full reports from Human Rights Watch and Genocide Watch are accessible online.  

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by Alessia Sartini

Category: Reports