Sudan’s IDP set to top 10M as famine looms, UN says

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) on Thursday warned that the number of people displaced by conflict inside Sudan could top 10 million in the coming days amid looming famine.

The agency said in a statement that according to the latest weekly data of its Displacement Tracking Matrix, 9.9 million people were internally displaced across all 18 states in Sudan – 2.8 million before the April 2023 war, and 7.1 million after the war.

More than half of all internally displaced persons (IDPs) are women, and over a quarter are children under the age of five, it noted.

“Imagine a city the size of London being displaced. That’s what it’s like, but it’s happening with the constant threat of crossfire, with famine, disease and brutal ethnic and gender-based violence,” IOM Director General Amy Pope said.

Underlining that humanitarian needs in the country are “massive, acute and immediate,” she noted that only 19% of the funds IOM has asked for have been delivered.

“Unified international efforts are required to avoid a looming famine,” she urged.

In total, the agency said, some 12 million have been forced to flee their homes in Sudan, with more than 2 million crossing borders into neighboring countries, principally Chad, South Sudan, and Egypt.

Last week, the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC), the highest-level humanitarian coordination forum of the UN system, issued a stark warning that the situation in Sudan had reached catastrophic levels.

According to the UN, the conflict in Sudan that started in April 2023 has resulted in over 16,000 deaths, displaced nearly 10 million people, and left over 25 million people in need of humanitarian assistance, making it one of the world’s largest displacement and hunger crises.

Sudan has been mired by fighting between the army, led by Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, who is the head of the ruling Sovereign Council, and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

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