March 9, 2023 (ZALINGEI) – The Central Darfur state announced Thursday the reopening of the border with the Central African Republic (CAR) to facilitate trade between the two countries.
Last January, Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, Deputy Chairman of the Sovereign Council and Commander of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) announced the closure of the CAR border speaking about an attempt to overthrow the government in Bangui involving Sudanese elements.
Hemetti further deployed his RSF paramilitary force along the 174km border which crosses Central Darfur and South Darfur states.
Following the reopening of the border with the CAR and South Darfur on March 4, Fadl Ahmed al-Nur Hassan, Um Dukhun Commissioner chaired a meeting including the locality’s security committee, the commanders of the joint forces and the Chamber of Commerce to discuss the activation of the border trade with the Central African Republic.
“In a meeting of the local security committee held at the initiative of the security forces deployed in the border area with the CAR, it was agreed to open the border to facilitate the flow of cross-border trade through the um Dukhun gate,” Hassan told Sudan Tribune after the meeting on Thursday.
He added that the security and military agencies operating in Um Dukhun are diligently working in cooperation with social components and traditional leaders to maintain security and stability and develop relations with the neighbouring localities in the Central African Republic.
The commissioner stressed that the situation is now stable and all the “negative phenomena” disappeared following the deployment of security forces last January.
The Sudanese authorities use the term “negative phenomena” to refer to human and arms trafficking, and drug smuggling.
Hemetti at the time spoke about the recruitment of Sudanese elements from Darfur by rebel groups. Also, he spoke about the smuggling of military uniforms from Sudan to the CAR.
These statements angered the head of the Sovereign Council Abdel Fattah al-Burhan who dismissed the involvement of Sudanese elements in regional conflicts.
Brigadier General Absher Gibril Balayel commander of the RSF forces deployed on the border area told the official news agency that the reopening of the border was “decided by the centre,” without further details.
Balayel added that the role of the forces is limited to controlling borders and controlling cross-border movement.