Kenyan President William Ruto gave a speech during Kenya's 59th Jamhuri Day (Independence Day) celebration at Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, on Dec. 12, 2022. (Photo by Fred Mutune/Xinhua)
Kenyan President William Ruto has appealed to the international community to step up efforts to end the unrest in Sudan that erupted last Saturday.
NAIROBI, April 20 (Xinhua) -- Kenyan President William Ruto on Wednesday appealed to the international community to step up efforts to end the unrest in Sudan that erupted last Saturday.
Ruto said there is a real danger that the escalation of hostilities in Sudan could degenerate into a security and humanitarian crisis on a devastating scale.
"It is therefore critical for an international coalition of all the actors that have been involved in supporting the restoration of civilian rule in Sudan to act with urgency," Ruto said in a televised news conference in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya.
He said the United Nations, African Union, Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), and QUAD for Sudan (Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, the U.S., and Britain) should lead a process that extends beyond the mere cessation of hostilities towards the restoration of sustainable peace, security, and stability in the country.
"The deteriorating situation in Sudan is of great concern to our region and the continent. In the last five days, fighting has led to the loss of hundreds of lives, massive destruction of property, and the displacement of civilians," Ruto said.
This photo taken on April 15, 2023 shows smoke rising in Khartoum, capital of Sudan as heavy gunfire was heard. (Photo by Mohamed Khidir/Xinhua)
Some 270 people have been killed and over 2,600 injured in the ongoing military clashes between the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), according to the World Health Organization (WHO) which cited Sudan's Ministry of Health Emergency Operations Center.
Ruto said Kenya is deeply alarmed that a misunderstanding over a single outstanding item in the Political Framework Agreement, namely the time frame for integrating the RSF into the SAF, has degenerated into violent conflict.
He said the indiscriminate deployment of lethal weapons and air power by both RSF and SAF has targeted military and non-military targets, causing devastating damage to property as well as strategic public infrastructure, including roads, bridges, and airports.
"We are also deeply concerned that members of the diplomatic community have been targeted and civilians in general have been caught in the crossfire," the Kenyan leader said.
He said a pattern of systematic violation of established norms and principles of international humanitarian laws is clearly emerging and this situation is evolving into a threat to regional and international peace and security.
Kenya implored the leadership of the two parties to ensure full compliance with the resolution of the IGAD Heads of State Summit held on April 16, including an immediate cessation of hostilities, allowing unrestricted access to humanitarian aid, and extending full cooperation to the IGAD Heads of State mission when it visits Khartoum.
Ruto said the outcome of these engagements and evidence of cooperation from the two parties will be crucial to the resumption and conclusion of negotiations on the Political Framework Agreement.
Clashes that erupted on April 15 have spread in many parts of Sudan's capital city Khartoum and other areas outside the capital. ■