Saudi Arabia, US announce Sudanese parties improve respect for cease-fire deal

KHARTOUM, May 26 (Xinhua) -- Saudi Arabia and the United States on Friday announced that Sudanese warring sides improved compliance with the cease-fire deal.

The two countries said in a joint statement posted by the U.S. Embassy in Sudan on Twitter that the Sudanese Army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) were better adhering to the Agreement on a Short-Term Cease-fire and Humanitarian Arrangements signed on May 20.

Sudanese walk outside Bashir hospital in southern Khartoum on May 26, 2023 as fighting eased in Sudan following a ceasefire. (Photo: AFP)

"Although there was observed use of military aircraft and isolated gunfire in (Sudan's capital) Khartoum, the situation improved from May 24 when the cease-fire monitoring mechanism detected serious breaches of the agreement," it said.

The statement further stated that "the facilitators cautioned the Sudanese parties against further violations," urging them to uphold their commitments under the Declaration of Commitment to Protect the Civilians of Sudan signed on May 11.

On May 20, the Sudanese Army and the RSF signed the Agreement on a Short-Term Cease-fire and Humanitarian Arrangements in the Saudi Arabian port city of Jeddah under Saudi-U.S. patronage.

According to the 7-day deal, which entered into force on May 22, the parties shall guarantee the freedom of movement of civilians throughout the country and protect them from violence, harassment, recruitment, or other abuse, as well as refrain from any violations of international human rights law.

The parties shall also provide security guarantees for safe, unhindered access for humanitarian agencies.

In its latest update on the situation in Sudan on Wednesday, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said that the conflict in Sudan has forced more than 1.36 million people to flee their homes, including nearly 320,000 who have escaped to neighboring countries.

Sudan has been witnessing deadly armed clashes between the Sudanese Army and the RSF in the capital Khartoum and other areas since April 15.