Sudan’s seven neighboring countries asked during a meeting in Egypt on Thursday for help from international donors to host the more than 700,000 refugees who have fled their country because of the war, which marks three months tomorrow, as the UN announced that mass grave with 87 bodies found in Darfur.

Following this finding, the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) announced in a report submitted to the UN Security Council that he had begun an investigation into war crimes in Sudan and expressed his “great concern”.

Sudan, between the Horn of Africa, the Sahel and the Middle East, has been mired in chaos since April 15, when the two generals who seized power in a coup in 2021 turned their guns on each other.

Since then, hostilities between the armed forces under General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and the Rapid Support Forces (RAF) paramilitaries under General Mohamed Hamdan Daglo have claimed at least 3,300 lives, according to the latest estimate by the non-governmental organization ACLED , and have uprooted 3 million others, who became internally displaced persons and refugees, according to UN estimates.

Egypt, the influential northern neighbor, has hosted the most refugees, over 255,000, followed by Chad (240,000) and South Sudan (160,000).

The international community, which pledged to allocate 1.5 billion dollars at a meeting in June, “must keep its promises” and “help neighboring countries”, emphasized Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

“Arms Trafficking”

“In one week, we welcomed more than 150,000 people, the majority of them women and children,” who fled to escape Darfur, where the worst atrocities are being committed, Chad’s president, General Mahamat Idriss Debi Itno, insisted.

Yesterday the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights announced that at least 87 people, apparently murdered by the DTY and their allies, were found buried in a mass grave in Darfur, where the United Nations already spoke of “crimes against humanity”, as the war has now assumed national and racial dimensions.

Citing “inflammation of prices” and “shortages” in border areas, Central African Republic President Fostan Arkanze Tuandera simultaneously warned against an exponential increase in “arms trafficking through porous borders”.

The seven countries that took part in the meeting in Cairo, together with officials from the African Union and the Arab League, stressed that they will do everything to ensure that Sudan does not turn into an “Eldorado for terrorism and organized crime”, according to their joint statement .

At the same time, on the ground, millions of residents of the Sudanese capital Khartoum continued to live in the rhythm of shelling and fighting: many told AFP that exchanges of fire with heavy weapons were taking place in various districts.

As well as that, as in many other states of Sudan for over 24 hours, they once again had no power.

In Wad Madani, a town where most of the displaced have flocked, 200 kilometers south of Khartoum, the power cut means there is also no running water, as the pumps are not working. At an aqueduct, the queue reached 300 meters, an AFP correspondent found.

Famine, rains, epidemics

In one of the world’s poorest countries, where one in two people need humanitarian aid to survive, the famine alert is now at its highest level, with more than two-thirds of health facilities out of order.

The rainy season has begun, epidemics will begin to spread explosively, like every year, against the background of worsening malnutrition of the citizens.

Humanitarian organizations continue to call – in vain – for safe access to war zones. The authorities, they complain, are blocking aid, leaving it at customs, and not giving visas to their workers.

Yesterday Human Rights Watch (HRW) highlighted another problem: the Egyptian government’s decision in June to now require visas for all Sudanese entering the territory. While until then women, children and men over 50 did not need passport visas.

The decision could turn out to be tantamount to a death sentence for many asylum seekers, the NGO warned.

Diplomatic efforts, notably those by Saudi Arabia and the US, yielded only a handful of cease-fire agreements — all of which were violated within hours.

African countries are now trying to take the initiative. But the Sudanese army stayed away from the meeting of the so-called quartet of IGAD, a regional organization of East Africa.

Nevertheless, “we have to align with the mechanisms of IGAD and the African Union”, suggested in Cairo Abiy Ahmed, the federal prime minister of Ethiopia, a country that not infrequently confronts Sudan’s affairs with fire and sword