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NGO: delivering aid into war-stricken Darfur is doable but difficult

People walk past stalls at Sudan's some 350 kilometres north of Sudanese capital Khartoum on August 15, 2023   -  
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Delivering aid into Sudan's war-ravaged region of Darfur is feasible but difficult, a leading humanitarian aid group said on Tuesday.

David Mcdonald, the regional director of CARE International, explained that his organization is only able to provide aid to the area because of the ties they have with local communities.

“It is a challenge to be restocking in South Darfur at this time. We need peaceful routes to be delivering aid and assistance through”, he added.

Sudan was plunged into chaos in April when months of simmering tensions between the military, led by Gen. Abdel Fattah Burhan, and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), commanded by Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo, exploded into open fighting in Khartoum and elsewhere.

In Darfur, the scene of genocidal war in the early 2000s, the fighting has morphed into ethnic violence, with the RSF and allied Arab militias targeting African communities in the western region, U.N. officials said.

“Our concern is that what we are going to see is a much more visible number of displaced people in need of assistance”, Mcdonald warned.

Meanwhile, Sudan's capital, Khartoum, has been reduced to an urban battlefield.

Across the city, RSF forces have commandeered homes and turned them into operational bases, residents and doctors groups say.

The army, in turn, has struck residential areas from the air and ground with artillery fire.

A host of U.N. organizations specializing in health, migration, refugees, human rights and food were among those who joined the call, saying that their two appeals for financial support — for a total of more than $3 billion — are less than 27% funded.

At least 4,000 people are estimated to have been killed, said Liz Throssell, a spokeswoman for the U.N. human rights office.

Activists and doctors on the ground say the death toll is likely far higher.

The war has displaced more than 4.3 million people, including some 3.2 million within the country, said William Spindler, a spokesman for the UNHCR refugee agency.

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