Europe may face an influx of refugees from Sudan if it does not support the incumbent military-led government, senior army official, Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, warned yesterday.
"Europe and the United States have little choice but to support the latest government to avert a refugee crisis," Dagalo told Politico, stressing that the Sudanese borders were being controlled by the army, "which was being criticised by the West for staging a coup."
More commonly Known as Hemeti, the army official's comments came amid turmoil being witnessed in Sudan since October when the Chief of Staff, Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, took control of the government and placed former Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok under house arrest.
While the move was internationally condemned, last week Hamdok was restored to his post under an agreement between the military and civilian government. This has not, however, quelled opposition protests nor eased western countries' worries.
"Because of our commitment to the international community and the law, we are keeping these people together," Hemeti reiterated, warning of a "big problem worldwide if Sudan opens its borders."
There has been an EU-wide reluctance to take in more refugees and asylum seekers.
The United Nations has reported that some seven million Sudanese and South Sudanese people had been "forcibly displaced, either within their own country or throughout the region."
Politico pointed out that human rights groups had linked Hemeti to war crimes and other atrocities committed in Sudan's Darfur region. He denies the accusations.