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Spanish planes ready to evacuate foreign civilians from Sudan

MADRID (Reuters) – Spanish military aircraft are on standby and ready to evacuate some 60 Spanish nationals and about 20 civilians from other countries from Sudan’s capital Khartoum amid armed conflict there, Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Albares said on Friday.

The unabated fighting that broke out six days ago in Sudan has killed at least 413 people and injured 3,551, according to the World Health Organisation.

Read More: Sudan’s army chief, the warlord and a feud that risks civil war

In the absence of a ceasefire, foreign nations – including the United States – have been unable to evacuate their citizens from Sudan.

Satellite image shows damaged buildings in Khartoum, Sudan April 17, 2023, in this handout image. Courtesy of Maxar Technologies/Handout via REUTERS.
Satellite image shows damaged buildings in Khartoum, Sudan April 17, 2023, in this handout image. Courtesy of Maxar Technologies/Handout via REUTERS.

“Every day, combats are increasing in intensity and that is why it hasn’t been possible to organise an evacuation yet,” Albares told a joint news conference with his German counterpart, Annalena Baerbock, in Berlin.

Read More: African countries advised to form partnerships to harness electricity resources 

However, military aeroplanes are ready to proceed with the evacuation and would act promptly at the first opportunity, he added.

Albares said that supplies had been provided to the Spanish embassy and ambassador’s residence in Khartoum and security around the diplomatic buildings had been tightened.

A Spanish citizen on a vessel off the coast of Sudan has been taken to safety, he added.

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