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Macron Announces $2.1 Billion Aid for Sudan as Famine Looms

France to Host Humanitarian Conference for Sudan

French President Emmanuel Macron announced on Monday that world donors are sending about $2.1 billion in humanitarian aid to war-stricken Sudan as the country inches towards a famine.

The aid will be targeted at providing food, water and medicine for the millions of people who have been caught up in the violence, Macron said at the end of a conference arranged to find help for the starving population.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Human Rights (OCHA) says almost 40% of the population are currently facing starvation and about hundreds of thousands of children and pregnant women could die of malnutrition in the coming weeks.

Neither of the warring factions in Sudan sent representatives to the talks.

The meeting also called for a cessation of hostilities to allow access for humanitarian aid, as well as increased international mediation in the yearlong crisis.

“Today, from this mobilisation, all of our presence, it sends a clear message we are sending to the belligerents. We are making a solemn appeal out of respect for international humanitarian rights and for the protection of the civil population,” Macron said at the conference.

The UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres who sent in video message said “it is time to support the Sudanese people. It is time to silence the guns”

Last April, Sudan descended into conflict as tensions escalated between the army and paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, leading to open fighting primarily in the capital Khartoum but has extended to other parts of the country.

Over 14,000 people have been killed and at least 33,000 injured in the conflict.

About 9 million people have been forced to flee their homes to places outside the capital or to neighbouring countries. Much of the country’s infrastructure has been destroyed.

Saudi Arabia and the US had initially led mediation efforts but have since turned their attention the Israel-Hamas war which is also threatening to snowball into a wider war.

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