Sisi affirms non-interference in Sudan crisis, urges negotiations

Ahram Online , Monday 17 Apr 2023

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has expressed readiness to mediate and restore calm between battling parties in Sudan, reiterating that the presence of Egyptian forces in Sudan is solely for training purposes and not to support any particular party.

President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi chairing a meeting of the Supreme Council of the Egyptian Armed Forces. (Photo courtesy of Egyptian Presidency)


El-Sisi’s remarks came while chairing a meeting of the Supreme Council of the Egyptian Armed Forces on Monday night, where he emphasised Egypt's efforts to reach a prompt solution to the ongoing Sudanese crisis to prevent more bloodshed in Sudan.

He expressed Egypt's readiness to play a mediating role to restore calm between the Sudanese parties, to achieve security and stability in the country.

The Egyptian president also affirmed that intensive communications are taking place to ensure the safety and security of Egyptian forces in Sudan.

On Saturday, the Egyptian Armed Forces said in a statement that it "is coordinating with the concerned parties in Sudan to ensure securing the Egyptian troops who were conducting joint training with their Sudanese counterparts."

The Egyptian Armed Forces statement was issued shortly after the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), led by Mohamed Hamdan "Hemedti" Dagalo, released a video on its official Twitter account showing several personnel wearing Egyptian military fatigues who were purportedly apprehended at Marawi airbase in northern Sudan.

Late on Saturday, the Head of the Sudanese Rapid Support Forces (RSF) Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, aka Hemedti, apologized for the released videos in remarks to Sky News Arabia, stressing that he was willing to cooperate to return them to Egypt.

On Monday, Adviser to the RSF head Ahmed Abdeen also apologized for any "individual behaviour" towards the soldiers, in remarks to Al-Jazeera.

Late on Monday, Minister of Emigration and Expatriates Affairs Soha Gendy said that there have been no confirmed deaths among the Egyptian community in Sudan.

Internal Affairs and Egypt’s Mediation

President El-Sisi pointed out that what is happening in Sudan is an internal matter that "should never be interfered with so as not to inflame the status quo there."

He emphasized Egypt's stance of not interfering in the internal affairs of other countries, warning of the consequences of interfering in Sudan's internal affairs.

"Egypt is always keen, through its foreign policies, for its position to be balanced and moderate with the issues of the entire region," El-Sisi said.

This, he says, comes as each country has its own specificity in managing its internal affairs, stressing the need for cooperation between countries within the framework of development and construction, away from interference in the internal affairs of countries.

El-Sisi’s call for non-interference in the crisis echoes remarks by Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry’s remarks during his calls earlier on Monday with his French, Djiboutian, Saudi and South Sudanese counterparts, in which Shoukry stressed the need for foreign parties to refrain from any interference in the Sudanese conflict so as not to exacerbate its severity.

Importance of Dialogue

El-Sisi highlighted the importance of negotiations in Sudan to resolve the crisis. He called on Sudanese parties to negotiate and sit down to resolve the current situation in the country, citing some countries currently suffering from instability and insecurity due to their refusal to engage in dialogue and resorting to the use of weapons and violence.

He referred to contacts with the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, to restore calm and sit at the dialogue table with "the brothers in Sudan, whether with the Sudanese Army or the Rapid Support Forces."

The Egyptian president indicated that communications with both Sudanese parties "are continuous" to stop the bloodshed and restore stability.

On Sunday, Egyptian FM Shoukry briefed the Chair of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki on Egypt's efforts to de-escalate the crisis in Sudan ahead of Faki's then-planned visit to Khartoum.

Egypt, which is currently holding consultations with the concerned parties both inside and outside Sudan to defuse the current crises, said the foreign ministry in a separate statement.

At the request of Egypt and Saudi Arabia, the Arab League convened an emergency meeting at the level of permanent representatives, in which it called for the immediate halt of all armed clashes in Sudan to avoid further bloodshed and to protect the lives of the Sudanese people as well as Sudan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

On the same day, Shoukry had a call with Sudan's Foreign Minister Ali Ahmed Karti to discuss de-escalating efforts.


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