Ali Saadi Abdul Zahra – University of Al-Nahrain – College of Law


Since the beginning of the Sudanese crisis, there have been various regional and international initiatives to resolve the issue. However, most of these initiatives have failed to achieve their intended results due to the intransigence of the conflicting parties (the army and the Rapid Support Forces) and their reliance on military solutions. The crisis in Sudan has reached a critical turning point, exacerbating humanitarian and security conditions, economic deterioration, tribal violence, and refugee influxes, posing serious repercussions on neighboring countries. Consequently, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) has attempted to settle the crisis between the warring parties and find a comprehensive solution, calling for the disarmament of Khartoum and the establishment of humanitarian corridors. However, the African Union has also made efforts towards a peaceful resolution, but despite its initiatives and calls for a ceasefire and a peaceful transition of power to civilians, it has faced challenges. The Cairo Summit of Sudan’s neighboring countries resulted in a positive response from the conflicting parties, accepting the initiative that called for an immediate and sustainable cessation of hostilities, the importance of a political solution, and the launch of an inclusive dialogue among Sudanese parties, respecting Sudan’s sovereignty, unity, and territorial integrity, and refraining from interfering in its internal affairs while preserving the Sudanese state and its institutions.

First: IGAD’s Initiative in Resolving the Sudanese Crisis:

Since the overthrow of Omar al-Bashir’s regime in 2019, IGAD has been working to bridge the gap between different parties in Sudan and settle the power-sharing crisis between the military and civilians, ultimately aiming for civilian rule in the country. On April 26, 2023, IGAD proposed an initiative to facilitate dialogue between all parties to find a comprehensive solution to the Sudanese crisis. The initiative included a 72-hour ceasefire and sent representatives of the armed forces and Rapid Support Forces to Juba, the capital of South Sudan. On June 12, Kenyan President William Ruto announced IGAD’s initiative, which involved a meeting between the head of the Sudanese Sovereign Council, Abdul Fattah al-Burhan, and the leaders of South Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Djibouti. The initiative aimed to open humanitarian corridors with the conflicting parties in Sudan and facilitate a national dialogue among Sudanese civilian forces to seek an end to the current crisis. Malik Agar, the Deputy Chairman of the Sudanese Sovereign Council, stated at the IGAD Summit, “We want to end the war and stop the fighting, and we demand the safe delivery of humanitarian aid.”

On July 10, 2023, the heads of state and government of the Quadripartite IGAD Group met in Addis Ababa to discuss the implementation of IGAD’s peace roadmap for the Republic of Sudan. The meeting was chaired by Kenyan President William Ruto and attended by Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and representatives from member countries, as well as the African Union Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace, and Security. Representatives from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the European Union, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, the United States, and the United Kingdom also participated. Youssef Aziz, representing the Rapid Support Forces, attended the meeting. The gathering expressed concern about the impact of the ongoing war in Sudan, which has claimed thousands of lives and displaced nearly 3 million people, including 2.2 million internally displaced persons and around 615,000 refugees who have crossed the borders into neighboring countries. The summit also addressed the escalation of conflict and repeated violations of various ceasefire agreements, as well as the spread of violence beyond Khartoum to other parts of Sudan, especially in Darfur and Kordofan, where the conflict has taken on ethnic and religious dimensions, threatening to deepen polarization in the country.