June 16, 2024

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1 American killed in Sudan as US forces prepare for possible embassy evacuation amid heavy fighting

1 American killed in Sudan as US forces prepare for possible embassy evacuation amid heavy fighting

Washington – The death of an American citizen in Sudan, central Fierce fighting between two rival generalsThe US State Department said Thursday, as the US redeploys its forces to the region ahead of a possible evacuation of the US Embassy in Khartoum.

“We can confirm the death of one US citizen in Sudan,” a State Department spokesperson said. “We are in contact with the family and extend our deepest condolences on their loss.”

The State Department declined to provide further details about the death, citing respect for the person’s family.

Despite the cease-fire that was intended to end the bloodshed, Hundreds of people were killed In Sudan, as fighting continues between forces controlled by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, commander of the Sudanese Armed Forces, and Major General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, who is in charge of the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces group. Distinguished American diplomatic convoy I got shot Earlier this week, though, no one was injured.

National Security Council spokesman John Kirby confirmed Thursday during a White House briefing that the Pentagon is “moving forward with the pre-positioning of certain military forces and capabilities nearby just for emergency purposes in the event they are needed for any kind of evacuation.”

A view of the area where a fire broke out after hitting a house during clashes between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces in Khartoum, Sudan, on April 20, 2023.

Omer Erdem/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

President Biden has authorized the move in recent days, Kirby said, but stressed that no decision has been made on whether to evacuate American personnel.

“We want to make sure we have the capacity ready in case it’s needed,” Kirby said. A US official said the Pentagon has moved special operations forces to Djibouti, a small country in the Horn of Africa.

In a statement earlier today, the Department of Defense said the US Africa Command is monitoring the situation and “conducting prudent planning for various contingencies.”

“As part of this, we are deploying additional capabilities nearby in the region for contingency purposes related to securing and possibly facilitating the departure of US Embassy personnel from Sudan, should circumstances warrant,” the statement said.

Americans in the country were urged to take refuge in their places. “It is not currently safe to carry out an evacuation coordinated by the US government of ordinary American citizens,” Deputy Spokesperson for the US State Department Vedant Patel said on Thursday.

Patel also said that all US personnel have been accounted for, and that he is not currently aware of specific threats against embassy staff or US citizens in the country.

A national security spokesperson said senior US officials are in direct contact with leadership on both sides and are pressing for an immediate ceasefire.

Eleanor Watson, David Martin, Haley Ott, Olivia Gazes and Willie Inman contributed to this report.

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