President Biden on Thursday signed an executive order expanding his authorities to impose sanctions on Sudan over the conflict that broke out between rival generals on April 15.
Forces loyal to Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, Sudan’s army chief and de facto leader, have been fighting with the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), led by Mohamed Hamdan Dagal, known as Hemedti. The two military leaders have agreed to several ceasefires, but the fighting has not stopped.
In a statement, Biden said the conflict in Sudan “must end.” His order gives him sweeping authorities to sanction any person or entity the US determines is “involved in activities that threaten the peace, security, and stability of Sudan.”
The order said the “situation in Sudan, including the military’s seizure of power in October 2021 and the outbreak of inter-service fighting in April 2023, constitutes an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States.”
The order said it is US policy to “support a transition to democracy and civilian transitional government in Sudan, to defend such a transitional government from those who would prevent its initial formation through violence.”
The Pentagon has been helping evacuate people from Sudan, and so far, over 1,000 American citizens have left. On Thursday, the Pentagon said the role of US troops in the country is set to change as the US expects the fighting to continue, but declined to say what the changes will be. Three US naval ships are off the coast of Sudan, and one has been transporting people across the Red Sea to Saudi Arabia.