The U.S. government has pledged that it will try to help the 16,000 Americans living in Sudan as the fighting continues between the Sudanese army and a paramilitary group.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken issued a statement late Saturday night confirming the U.S. suspended operations in the U.S. embassy in the city of Khartoum, noting that they “safely evacuated all U.S. personnel and their dependents.” The U.S. embassy has about 70 U.S. staff members, and there are an estimated number of 16,000 Americans living in Sudan, who U.S. officials have said that they will aid.
Blinken said in his statement Saturday evening that the U.S. will help Americans in Sudan “in planning for their own safety and provide regular updates to U.S. citizens in the area.” This comes after a U.S. embassy convoy was attacked last week, but no one was injured.
“Suspending operations at one of our embassies is always a difficult decision, but the safety of our personnel is my first responsibility,” Blinken said in his statement. “The widespread fighting has caused significant numbers of civilian deaths and injuries and damage to essential infrastructure and posed an unacceptable risk to our Embassy personnel.”
Under Secretary for Management Ambassador John Bass said in a Saturday briefing that the U.S. will work with its allies to inform Americans in the area about the changing security conditions, noting that it is a “challenging environment.” He said that the U.S. can help connect Americans with other Americans in the country to “pool support.”
“With regard to practically what we’re able to do for Americans, it’s a challenging environment, no question about it,” Bass said.
“I think what we’re trying to do in partnership with many of our allies and other countries is first make sure they’ve got the best available information about how security conditions might be changing, about what routes might be comparatively more dangerous, about experiences of folks who maybe have gone a certain way or been in a certain part of the city and experienced really challenging environments,” he continued.
The State Department also issued a statement Saturday saying that the travel advisory to Sudan remains a Level 4, meaning U.S. citizens should not travel to the country due to “armed conflict, civil unrest, crime, terrorism and kidnapping.”
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