Caritas in Eastern Africa Urges Humanitarian Agencies to “urgently step up” Sudan support

Caritas officials who met in Rome for their 10th regional assembly. Credit: Caritas Africa

Presidents of Caritas in the region of the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA) have appealed to humanitarian agencies operating in war-torn Sudan to “urgently” increase their support for victims of the war that is raging in the country’s capital, Khartoum.

The Caritas officials who met in Rome for their 10th regional assembly that ended May 10 further urged the humanitarian agencies to extend their support to people seeking refuge in Sudan’s neighboring countries.

“We are compelled to write this solidarity message with the Catholic Church and the people of Sudan who are in a challenging situation as a result of the war which erupted in Sudan, particularly in Khartoum, the Capital City, and other parts of the state since the 15th of April 2023,” Caritas officials said in a message they shared with ACI Africa on Thursday, May 11.

They further said, “We appeal to all Caritas Member Organizations operating in the region, Caritas Internationalis, UN Organizations, and other NGOs to urgently step up on humanitarian support and rescue the people of the Sudan who are affected by this crisis inside the country and those who have fled to the neighboring countries.”

The message was signed by the Bishop Presidents of Caritas in the AMECEA region, including Berhaneyesus Cardinal Souraphiel of Caritas Ethiopia, Bishop Erkolano Lodu Tombe of Caritas South Sudan, Archbishop Menghesteab Tesfamariam of Caritas Eritrea, and Bishop Joseph Obanyi Sagwe of Caritas Kenya.


Other signatories to the message were Bishop Serverus JJumba of Caritas Uganda, Bishop Montfort Stima of Caritas Malawi, and Archbishop Alick Banda of Caritas Zambia.

The officials in Caritas in the AMECEA region expressed concern that war continues to cause many deaths, injuries, displacements, and the destruction of properties and infrastructure in Sudan.

They said that the destruction of healthcare services in the Northeastern African country is making the provision of life-saving support extremely difficult and very costly. 

“We, therefore, would like to urge the warring parties to immediately cease the fighting and seek peaceful means to resolve the problem,” the Caritas Presidents said.

They added, “Consequently, we urge the regional and international bodies such as the UN, AU, IGAD, and all countries and people of goodwill to redouble their efforts and convince the warring parties and bring them to the negotiation table.”

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In their message, Caritas Presidents in the AMECEA region appealed to the people of God to continue praying for peace and reconciliation in Sudan.

Violent protests in Sudan erupted on April 15, pitting the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) against the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

A recent update on the ongoing clashes in Sudan indicates a death toll of 604 people, including civilians. More than 5,100 people have also been reportedly wounded in connection with the fighting.

Agnes Aineah is a Kenyan journalist with a background in digital and newspaper reporting. She holds a Master of Arts in Digital Journalism from the Aga Khan University, Graduate School of Media and Communications and a Bachelor's Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communications from Kenya's Moi University. Agnes currently serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.