Sudan conflict: army says evacuations of diplomats expected to begin

Countries have struggled to bring out citizens amid deadly clashes that have killed more than 400 people

The Sudanese army has said it is coordinating efforts to take diplomats from the UK, the US, China and France out of the country on military planes, as fighting persists in the capital including at its main airport.

The military said army chief General Abdel Fattah Burhan had spoken to leaders of various countries requesting safe evacuations of their citizens and diplomats from Sudan, which has been hit by violence for the past week.

Countries have struggled to bring out their citizens amid deadly clashes that have killed more than 400 people so far.

With Sudan’s main international airport closed, foreign countries have ordered their citizens to shelter in place until they can figure out evacuation plans.


Gen Burhan said diplomats from Saudi Arabia had already been taken out of Port Sudan and airlifted back to the kingdom.

He said Jordan’s diplomats will soon be evacuated in the same way.

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs Micheál Martin said on Friday that Ireland is working closely with European Union and other partners to prepare to evacuate more than 100 Irish citizens caught up in the civil war which has erupted in Sudan.

Mr Martin said Ireland had asked all Irish citizens living and working in Sudan to register with the Irish Embassy in Nairobi in Kenya and, to date, 105 people had registered though this could change given the number of Irish citizens with international aid organisations in Sudan.

Even as questions persisted over how the mass evacuation of foreign citizens would unfold, the Saudi foreign ministry announced on Saturday that it had started arranging the evacuation of Saudi nationals out of the country. Officials did not elaborate on the plans.

Earlier this week, the Pentagon said it was moving additional troops and equipment to a naval base in the tiny Gulf of Aden nation of Djibouti to prepare for the possible evacuation of US Embassy personnel from Sudan.

On Friday, the US said it had no plans for a government-coordinated evacuation of an estimated 16,000 American citizens trapped in Sudan, and continued to urge US nationals to shelter in place. — AP