THE Federal Government has commenced moves to evacuate Nigerians trapped in Sudan.
This follows reports of unrest in the country as a result of violent clashes between the Sudanese Army and a paramilitary group, Rapid Support Forces.
The plan to evacuate Nigerians trapped in the country is in response to a request by Nigerian students in Sudan for immediate evacuation from the country.
A statement released by Gabriel Odu for the Media, Public Relations and Protocols Unit of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM) on Thursday, April 20, said various Federal Government agencies are working out an arrangement for the evacuation of Nigerians in Sudan.
The agencies involved are NiDCOM, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the Nigerian mission in Sudan.
“The Commission has received the letter of solicitation by the National Association of Nigerian Students in Sudan for possible evacuation of students, especially those in Khartoum, the Sudanese capital,” the statement said.
NIDCOM, in the same vein, urged “all Nigerian students in Sudan and Nigerians living in Sudan to be security conscious and calm”.
Background of the crisis
The Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) have been fighting for control of the government since February 15. As a result, at least 180 people have been killed.
The crisis, which began in Khartoum, is spreading to residential areas in the capital, which could increase the number of casualties.
Thousands of Nigerian students are trapped as a result of the conflict.
The National Association of Nigerian Students in Sudan (NANSS) wrote to the Federal Government, appealing for the evacuation of its members.
The students said they are stranded, living in fear with no access to basic amenities and are facing dangerous threats.
“We hereby write soliciting and yearning for the Nigerian Government’s intercession to rescue and send for an immediate evacuation of the Nigerian students that are stuck in the centre of the ongoing war,” the group said in a letter.
Nigeria and Sudan have had a close relationship since 1960. According to student organisations, about 10,000 Nigerian students are studying in the country.
Also, thousands of other Nigerians are engaged in businesses in Sudan.