FM sends working group to Sudan; first batch of Chinese personnel safely evacuated to neighboring country
Published: Apr 24, 2023 10:07 PM
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning

Chinese Foreign Ministry has dispatched a working group to Sudan and the first batch of Chinese personnel have been safely evacuated to Sudan's neighboring country, spokesperson Mao Ning said on Monday, as the conflict continues to escalate in capital Khartoum.

"Since abrupt changes took place in the situation in Sudan, the safety of our overseas compatriots has been in the thoughts of the CPC Central Committee. The Chinese Foreign Ministry immediately activated the consular emergency response mechanism and has been in close communication and coordination with other government departments, local governments and Chinese embassies and consulates in Sudan and its neighboring countries," Mao said. 

We are doing our utmost to protect the safety of our compatriots in Sudan and come up with a plan for evacuation and transfer, Mao noted. 

Our Ministry and Embassy in Sudan once again remind Chinese nationals in Sudan to closely follow the notices and alerts from the Embassy, register their personal information with the Embassy as soon as possible and make sure they can be reached through the phone or other communication networks, Mao said.

The Global Times on Monday afternoon learnt  from a Chinese employee stationed in the capital Khartoum, who requested anonymity that he is on a bus to Egypt. The employee said they are scheduled to stay in Egypt for about two days before taking a plane back to China.

The Chinese Embassy in Egypt on Monday evening issued a notice saying that recently, the security situation in Sudan has deteriorated sharply, and Chinese citizens have entered Egypt from the Sudan-Egypt border. The Chinese embassies in Sudan and Egypt are paying close attention to and actively assisting Chinese citizens in evacuating Sudan and enter Egypt. The Chinese Embassy in Egypt has sent a working group to a border port in southern Egypt.

Sudan has witnessed deadly armed clashes between the Sudanese army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in Khartoum and other areas since April 15, with the two sides accusing each other of initiating the conflict, according to the Xinhua News Agency.

The conflict between the Sudanese army and the RSF has resulted in ferocious fighting, including tank battles and airstrikes that have caused the deaths of more than 400 people and left thousands wounded, according to media reports.

Following the clashes in Khartoum, Wu Xi, director-general of the Department of Consular Affairs of the Foreign Ministry, said on Sunday that China attaches great importance to the safety of Chinese nationals and institutions in Sudan and will continue to do its best to protect the lives of the more than 1,500 Chinese compatriots in the country.

On Saturday, the Chinese Embassy in Sudan released a notice to gather information on whether Chinese nationals wish to leave the country, and it also warned them to pay close attention to the situation and strengthen precautions to ensure their safety given the continuous clashes in the locality. 

As the situation continues to deteriorate, some international organizations warned that the ongoing conflict not only leads to a severe humanitarian crisis within Sudan but also has the potential to spill over to neighboring countries and regions.

A large number of Sudanese civilians have been forced to flee their homes and seek refuge in other countries. According to officials from the UN World Food Program (WFP), an estimated 10,000 to 20,000 refugees have already entered Chad, the majority women and children. The living conditions of these refugees are extremely difficult, UN officials noted.