Tens of thousands displaced by increasing fighting in southeast Sudan — Global Issues

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“People are facing multiple protection risks and have reported widespread looting of homes and personal belongings,” the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said (OCHA) said in a flash update issued late Thursday evening.

Humanitarian partners hosting displaced people from Sennar State in southeastern Sudan are scaling up their aid efforts to meet their needs, the report said.

The towns of Sennar, Sinja and Ad Dinder were already home to some 286,000 displaced people before the fighting escalated in late June.

This indicates that the recently displaced people from Sennar may have been displaced at least once before.

Homes, shops as targets

They face numerous security risks, with reports of widespread looting of their homes, vehicles and personal belongings, reportedly by members of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

Local shops and markets have also been targeted, depriving civilians of essential resources and increasing insecurity.

The war between rival armies, the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the RSF, began in April last year amid growing tensions over the transition to civilian rule.

Broader situation

OCHA further reported that the displaced people in Sennar have arrived from the neighbouring states of Gedaref, Kassala and Blue Nile.

Some 26,000 people – including 6,800 children – are believed to have reached Gedaref, gathering at a local market in urgent need of food, water and shelter, an OCHA team in the area said.

On Wednesday, another 1,000 people from Sennar arrived at the reception centre in Kassala state.

In addition, more than 30,000 people have arrived in Blue Nile State, most of whom are being hosted in school buildings that were already housing other displaced communities.

UN Response

To cope with the influx, UN humanitarian teams have distributed ready-to-eat meals and drinking water to families.

They also provide basic health care through a mobile clinic and support a community kitchen that can feed approximately 15,000 people.

But while humanitarian partners are scaling up their assistance in response to increased displacement, more aid is needed to meet the growing needs, OCHA said.

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