Kenyans stranded as diplomatic mission in Sudan closes
Kenyan citizens stranded in war-torn Sudan are facing an uncertain future after the closure of the Kenyan diplomatic mission on Sunday.
The closure, announced by Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Korir Sing’Oei, was attributed to the resurgence of fighting in Sudan, specifically targeting diplomatic missions.
“The safety of our diplomatic officials is paramount, and we have been receiving disturbing reports of armed groups targeting diplomatic personnel in Khartoum, Sudan. As a result, the Kenya Mission in Khartoum, which had previously remained open to facilitate the evacuation of Kenyans, is now closed,” stated Sing’Oei.
Previously, in April, Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary (CS) Alfred Mutua had assured the nation that arrangements were in place to evacuate Kenyans if the situation in Sudan deteriorated. Over 3,000 Kenyans were estimated to be residing in Sudan at the time.
In collaboration with national airlines, the government evacuated over 900 Kenyans from Sudan.
However, with the closure of the diplomatic mission, the fate of the remaining Kenyans still in Sudan remains uncertain. The government has yet to provide a statement regarding the number of Kenyans left in the war-torn country and the plans for their evacuation.
The conflict in Sudan shows no signs of abating. Just days ago, a market in Khartoum was struck by rockets, resulting in the loss of 18 lives and leaving more than 100 injured.
The ongoing clashes between rival military forces have disrupted peace dialogues and humanitarian efforts mediated by the US and Saudi Arabia.
Neighborhood organizations, which have been providing essential supplies such as food and medicine to the affected residents of Khartoum, described the situation as catastrophic and made a plea for doctors and blood donations to address the urgent humanitarian crisis.
According to the United Nations, the nation is currently facing a severe humanitarian crisis, resulting in over 1,800 casualties and the displacement of at least 1.6 million individuals either within the country or across its borders.
Many affected individuals have sought refuge in neighboring countries such as Egypt, Chad, and South Sudan.