At least 250,000 refugees have crossed into countries neighbouring Sudan since April 15, after a rivalry between army general Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and the head of the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, Mohamed Hamdan “Hemedti” Dagalo, turned into an armed conflict.
Another 843,000 people are displaced internally, the United Nations refugee agency said, bringing the total number of people fleeing their homes over the past six weeks to more than one million.
While most of the worst fighting has taken place in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, fierce battles also took place in the country’s western region of Darfur, mostly between Arab and Masalit communities. Waves of intercommunal violence have forced at least 60,000 refugees so far to flee into neighbouring Chad.
Aid agencies say the numbers are much higher as people keep streaming every day into the country, and thousands have not been registered so far.
Most of the refugees are in informal settlements along the border and remain at risk from the fighting if they are not moved deeper into the country before the rainy season starts in about four weeks.
The UN’s refugee agency UNHCR started to relocate about 1,000 people on Monday amid huge logistical challenges and a shortage of funds.
Resources in Chad were already stretched to assist about 600,000 refugees already in the country before the Sudan crisis.