Sudan's army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan said in early July that the army is ready to "receive and equip" voluntary fighters.
On September 6, civilians recruited by the Sudanese army took part in a military training and parade in Wadi Hamid, in northern Sudan.
An army spokesperson had previously said that the enlistment would be voluntary. Sudan’s existing armed forces law says, however, that retired soldiers remain as reservists, eligible for compulsory re-enlistment. That does not include those who only did Sudan’s mandatory two-year military service.
The possible recruitment of civilians, which could worsen already deadly violence, has been the subject of debate for weeks.
Since battles began on April 15 between the regular army, led by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) commanded by Burhan's former deputy Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, nearly 7,500 people have been killed, according to a conservative estimate from the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project
Humanitarian organisations are particularly concerned about the plight of children, over 13.6 million of whom are, according to Unicef, in need of humanitarian aid, and 300,000 at risk of starvation.