Sudan’s government, on Monday, declined to partake in a regional meeting to settle the crisis in the conflict-wracked nation, accusing Kenya, which chaired the talks, of favoring rival forces.
Approximately 3,000 people have been killed since mid-April when the fighting erupted between Sudan’s rival generals, while nearly three million have been forced to flee their homes.
The East African regional bloc IGAD had invited the foes; Sudan’s army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, commander of the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) to a meeting in Ethiopia’s capital on Monday.
Neither attended the talks personally in Addis Ababa, although the RSF sent a representative to the “quartet” meeting led by Kenya, South Sudan, Djibouti, and Ethiopia.
Sudan’s foreign ministry said on Monday that its delegation would not participate until its request to remove Kenya as chair of the talks was met.
The ministry had asked for “Kenyan President William Ruto (to) be replaced… in particular because of his partiality”, the statement said.
Sudan had earlier alleged that Nairobi “adopted the positions of the RSF militia, sheltered its people, and offered them various forms of support”.
In a communique released after Monday’s meeting, the quartet said it would request the African Union look into possibly deploying the East Africa Standby Force in Sudan “for the protection of civilians and… humanitarian access”.
The Force is usually tasked with election observer missions.