Sudan freezes membership in IGAD regional bloc

Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the Sudan army chief and chairman of the Transitional Sovereign Counc

The beleaguered government of war-torn Sudan has suspended its membership in the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the East African regional bloc that has tried to broker talks between the country’s belligerent foes.

The Sudanese foreign ministry which is allied to army chief and de facto leader, Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, made the announcement in Port Sudan on Saturday.

The Government of Sudan accused IGAD of ‘violating’ Sudan’s sovereignty by inviting the leader of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), Gen. Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo (Hemeti) to an extraordinary assembly in Uganda on Thursday.

The Sudanese army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) paramilitary group have been fighting for nine months in a war that has killed thousands of people and displaced more than seven million.

The government had announced earlier in the week that it was freezing its relations with IGAD ahead of a meeting of the bloc in Uganda on Thursday after it invited RSF head Dagalo.

It accused the bloc of “violating Sudan’s sovereignty” and setting a “dangerous precedent”.

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