The United States Secretary of State, Anthony Blinkenwarned on Monday that the Wagner mercenary group of Russia runs the risk of aggravating the conflict of Sudanand Kenya’s top diplomat also criticized the involvement of Middle Eastern powers.
“We have a deep concern for the commitment of the group Prigozhinthe Wagner group, in Sudan,” Blinken told a news conference, referring to the founder of the Kremlin-linked group, Yevgeny Prigozhin.
Blinken said Wagner, who has been active in Mali and the Central African Republic, as well as in the Russian invasion of Ukraine“it just brings more death and destruction” wherever it is involved.
Kenya’s Foreign Secretary, Alfred Mutual, also pointed the finger at the countries of the Middle East. He did not name them, but Egypt and the United Arab Emirates have been widely reported to have backed Sudan’s warring generals.
“We have been quite concerned about some of our friends in the Middle East,” he said, “as well as about Russia or others who have long been friends with one side or the other.”
“At this particular time, it is not the time to be able to take sides in a war,” Mutua said.
He added that foreign players were “trying to use Sudan as a playing field for whatever reason.” “We call on the outside forces to leave Sudan alone.”
Media reports citing officials have claimed that Wagner has supplied weapons to the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, who have been fighting the Sudanese army for the past 10 days.
Even as Western nations evacuate Sudan, Mutua said Kenya believed a deal was “within reach” between Rapid Support Forces chief Mohamed Hamdan Daglo and his rival, army commander Abdel Fattah al-Burhan.
“The fight continues in Sudan, but we feel that at least we have a ticket. They have not closed their ears to the world, “said Mutua.
He said Kenya was ready “at any time” to mediate, with President William Ruto willing to fly to Sudan if security conditions allowed.
The president of the United States, Joe Bidenordered on Saturday the evacuation of US diplomats Khartoum, a sign of growing concern about deteriorating security, even as he and Blinken push for a diplomatic solution.
Blinken said the United States was still in “very active contact” with the Americans in Sudan, even though most were dual nationals. “I would say a few dozen have expressed interest in leaving,” Blinken said.
“We have been working with allies and partners to do everything we can to enable them to find their way out if that is what they choose to do,” he said.
(With information from EFE)
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