9656th Meeting (PM)

Protracted Conflict in Sudan Demands Security Council’s Close Attention, United Action, Delegate Stresses, at Sanctions Committee Briefing

Members Should Re-Double Efforts to Ensure That Parties to Conflict Comply with Arms Embargo, Speaker Says

Parties that violate the arms embargo in Sudan may be subject to targeted sanctions, the senior United Nations official on that file warned, while Sudan’s representative said that the current sanctions regime has disrupted his country’s ability to maintain security by depriving its Armed Forces of equipment while the Rapid Support Forces continuously violate the measure.

Joonkook Hwang (Republic of Korea), Chair of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1591 (2005) concerning Sudan, briefing the 15-member organ on work covering the period from 19 March to today, reported that, on 22 April, the Secretary-General appointed four experts to serve on the Panel of Experts until 12 May 2025 and, on 23 May, appointed the fifth expert.  During the reporting period, the Committee met once in informal consultations and, on 4 June, it heard a briefing by the Sudan Panel of Experts on its work programme for 2024-2025 as well as on the current situation in Darfur. The Coordinator provided the Committee with an overview of the Panel’s intended areas of investigation and monitoring, he said, also highlighting the press release regarding this briefing, issued on 7 June.

In the ensuing discussion, the delegate of the United States said that the conflict in Sudan was a “nightmare” for the people of that country, who bore the brunt of unthinkable violence and the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.  Emphasizing that Council members must respond as they did today — amid the outbreak of violence in El Fasher — she called for an immediate end to the fighting and for imposing pressure so that warring parties cease blocking humanitarian access.  Underscoring that the conflict will not be solved on the battlefield, but at the negotiating table, she added:  “This needs to happen immediately.  And it needs to happen with our support.”

Similarly, the representative of Mozambique, also speaking for Algeria, Guyana and Sierra Leone, stressed that the protracted conflict demands the Council’s close attention and united action.  Pointing to reports from credible sources on external interference fuelling the conflict, and an alarming level of arms transfers in Darfur, he stressed that Council members need to identify a means to monitor the reported facts on foreign interference and take appropriate measures pursuant to the arms embargo.  He also urged Sudan’s neighbours to refrain from supplying arms or related materials to any party to the conflict.

Underscoring the importance of the arms embargo for regional peace and security, he emphasized:  “It is more than ever time for the parties to show restraint and wisdom to preserve innocent lives.”  Focus should be on dialogue, reconciliation and peaceful resolution, he said, reiterating that the Committee’s work remains essential for the Council to monitor the situation on the ground and identify violations of the sanctions regime.  Expressing his support for the Panel of Experts, he added:  “Peace must prevail in Sudan.”

The representative of the Russian Federation, welcoming the new member of the sanctions Committee appointed during the reporting period, said that the Panel of Experts could visit Sudan to meet with authorities and visit problematic regions.  Noting that the situation in Darfur has not been normalized despite 20 years of Council sanctions, she observed:  “Weapons have gone in and will continue to do so.”  Such limitations only postpone the hope of reaching peace, she said, adding that her country also does not support the imposition of unlawful unilateral measures to pressure Sudanese authorities.

Speaking in his national capacity, the representative of the Republic of Korea, Council President for June, recalled that, as the reports of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1591 (2005) are based on the consensus of its members, it is only a procedural and factual description of its work.  He expressed concern that it may give the impression that the Committee and the Council are not sufficiently addressing the situation on the ground.  Pointing to the Panel of Experts’ observations about the supply of a considerable amount of foreign weapons to Darfur on daily basis, he added:  “It is indeed frustrating that the Committee’s ability to respond remains severely restricted.”

While the Panel of Experts faces significant challenges to its work due to security concerns that prevent travel to Darfur, he also noted that the consensus-based nature of the Committee tends to result in the “least common denominator”.  In line with resolution 2726 (2024) on El Fasher, adopted on 13 June, he stressed that Council members should re-double their efforts to ensure that the parties to the conflict comply with the arms embargo.  “All parties that violate the arms embargo may be subject to targeted sanctions,” he added, encouraging Council members to work together to ensure the effective implementation and strengthening of the sanctions regime.

Sudan’s representative, meanwhile, stated that the village of Wad al-Nour was subject to a barbaric attack by the Rapid Support Forces last week, killing 269 people, including 53 children.  This was not an isolated incident, but part of a widespread pattern of systemic crimes perpetrated by militias, he said, also noting that the “dangerous and complex” situation in Darfur threatens a humanitarian disaster.  Calling on the Council to take measures against the Rapid Support Forces’ “ugly crimes”, he welcomed the International Criminal Court’s expected role.  He also urged members to include the United Arab Emirates and Chad in their sanctions, adding that the former is a “sponsor and direct accomplice” in war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sudan.

On the arms embargo, he called on the Council to consider the change of dynamics in Darfur, pointing out that resolution 1591 (2005) and subsequent measures disrupted his country’s ability to maintain security — depriving the Sudanese Armed Forces of the ability to transfer arms and equipment — while the Rapid Support Forces violated the measure.  Underscoring the importance of allowing the unhindered flow of humanitarian aid, he pointed out that transferring relief from a location within the country would be three times less costly when compared to doing so from neighbouring States.  Therefore, the UN could consider purchasing essential goods in local markets to support farmers.

Further, he outlined measures taken by the Sudanese Armed Forces to ensure the protection of civilians — including keeping them away from areas that constitute legitimate military targets — contrary to claims spread by Rapid Support Forces militias that are intended to distract from their atrocious crimes.  He also voiced support for the Jeddah Declaration, while pointing out that the Rapid Support Forces ignored those commitments and used the humanitarian ceasefire to expand the scope of their criminal military actions.

For information media. Not an official record.