Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Sudanese Army Denies Sending Forces to Libya

Sudanese Army Denies Sending Forces to Libya

Monday, 11 November, 2019 - 10:00
A Sudanese flag is attached to a machine gun of RSF soldiers as they wait for the arrival of Lieutenant General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo before a meeting in Aprag, Sudan, June 22, 2019. (Reuters)

The Sudanese army has denied a UN report accusing it of sending fighters from its Rapid Support Forces (RSF) to fight in Libya alongside the Marshal Khalifa Haftar-led Libyan National Army (LNA).

It denounced the report, saying it tarnishes the Sudanese armed forces’ image.

According to press reports, the Panel of Experts of the International Sanctions Committee on Libya accused Khartoum of sending 1,000 soldiers from the RSF to eastern Libya in July.

These soldiers were sent at the order of RSF commander Lieutenant General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, also known by his nickname Hemedti, in violation of UN sanctions banning military support to the parties involved in the Libyan conflict.

The report is absolutely false and the Sudanese army has no forces in Libya, military spokesperson Brigadier General Amer Mohammed al-Hassan told Asharq Al-Awsat.

“Our armed forces have great responsibilities during the transitional period inside Sudan and will neither be part of other countries’ crises nor open new fronts,” Hassan stressed.

He explained that the army is governed by established traditions that are based on non-intervention in other countries’ affairs.

“Our forces are not a security company and will not be part of Libya’s complexities,” he noted, rejecting the UN report as unacceptable.

During the rule of ousted President Omar al-Bashir, the army had accused armed movements from Darfur of being involved in the Libyan conflict that has been raging since the ouster of the Moammar al-Gaddafi’s regime.

Reports still speak of the involvement of Darfur armed movements in the conflict in the neighboring country, some fighting alongside the LNA and others fighting alongside forces of the Government of National Accord.

In August 2018, a report by the Panel of Experts on Libya reported that rebel groups from Darfur had boosted their presence in Libya.

Many of them have joined Libyan armed groups and are “reportedly building up their military capabilities in order to be ready to return to Sudan when the environment becomes more conducive.”

However, Darfur armed movements strongly denied that report, describing it as “unfair, unreliable and baseless.”

They denied any presence in Libya and any role in the ongoing fighting there.

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