Aid group: Hospital in Sudan’s al-Fashir closed after attack

Doctors Without Borders, which supports the hospital, informed Reuters that the main hospital in Sudan’s al-Fashir City was attacked and rendered unusable. Local volunteers, however, blamed the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces for the incident.

More than 1.8 millions people live in this city in Darfur, northwestern Sudan. It is also the front line in a conflict between the Sudanese Army and the RSF that began in April 2023.

RSF has taken control of Khartoum, the capital, and much of western Sudan. It is now seeking to expand its territory in the center, because the United Nations says that the Sudanese people are “imminently at risk of famine”.

The United Nations reported that 130,000 people fled their homes as a direct result of the fighting between April and May in al-Fashir.

The RSF has not responded to a comment request.

MSF didn’t say who attacked the hospital. It is the only hospital capable of dealing with what it calls daily mass casualty incidents.

MSF reported that from May 10 to 6, 1,315 people were injured and 208 died at the hospital. However, many people could not reach the facility due to fighting.

Michel-Olivier Lacharite (head of MSF’s emergency operations) told Reuters the hospital began evacuating its patients three times in a row since May 25, when it was hit by fighting.

Al-Fashir Emergency Response Room (a volunteer group) said on Sunday the RSF fighters had raided and destroyed the hospital’s pharmacy and ambulance on Saturday. They also killed and injured several people.

Reuters reported that an eyewitness saw people evacuating from the hospital. Other eyewitnesses claimed the RSF fired missiles into the hospital’s vicinity.

The camp committee and one of its volunteers said that a separate attack took place on Saturday at the Abu Shouk camp, located to the north. This attack affected another medical center, inflicted injuries on more than 30 people, and resulted in the deaths of two.

According to a report released last week by the Yale Humanitarian Research Lab, arsonists have set fire to 40 settlements in and around the city since March.

Residents of the area have accused the RSF of the attacks.

Residents say that leaving the city is dangerous. They claim that those who fled have been attacked, and some even killed, on the main RSF controlled road out of town.

An aid worker and residents reported that most of those who left took routes south to Zamzam Camp, or west towards Tawila and Jebel-Mara, areas controlled by armed factions, including Abdelwahid Mohamed Nour’s faction of the Sudan Liberation Army.

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