KENYA: Regional Ecclesial Bodies Ramp-Up Calls for Dialogue After Failed 24-Hour Ceasefire in Sudan


By Paschal Norbert

NAIROBI, APRIL 20, 2023(CISA) – After a shaky 24-hour- ceasefire lobbied by countries seeking to evacuate their citizens from Sudan failed on Wednesday, April 19, fierce fighting could still be witnessed around Khartoum with the UN fearing for the people as food supplies dwindle and medical services collapse.

Sudan’s health ministry estimates that over 270 people have lost their lives while 2,600 have been badly wounded.

The All-Africa Conference of Churches (AACC) in a statement issued on April 18, has termed the full-blown armed conflict in Sudan which has resulted in the loss of lives and destruction of property “an embarrassment to the people of Africa,” and “a major setback to the progress made towards restoring democracy and peace in Sudan.”

“We urge the sides involved in the armed conflict to ceasefire, resume talks, and finalize the framework agreement toward a peaceful transition to democracy,” said the AACC.

“We are appealing for the security and safety of civilians, many of whom are still trapped in locations where there is combat,” the conference stated.

Meanwhile, in a message of solidarity to the people of Sudan, The Fellowship of Christian Councils and Churches in the Great Lakes and Horn of Africa (FECCLAHA) also appealed for dialogue and urged the warring parties to initiate a ceasefire.

“We call upon the international community to not only remain seized of the matter but also work toward building synergies for unity and return to normalcy,” they said.

In their statement, the AACC pleaded with the African Union (AU) Peace and Security Council, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and countries in the Horn of Africa to engage in urgent high-level diplomacy to avert the situation before many lives are lost.

“We urge stakeholders to support ongoing efforts to return the country to the transition process toward a constitutional order,” stated the AACC.

The All-Africa Conference of Churches (AACC) is a continental ecumenical body that accounts for over 140 million Christians across the continent. It is the largest association of Protestant, Anglican, Orthodox and Indigenous churches in Africa and is a member of the worldwide ecumenical network.

While the FECCLAHA, founded in 1999, is a regional ecumenical organization that provides its members with an avenue for sharing perspectives on matters enhancing peace and reconciliation in the Great Lakes and the Horn of Africa through the facilitation of ecumenical cooperation and fellowship within the framework of holistic Christian ministry.