Malaysian student in Sudan staying put at home


PETALING JAYA: Loud gunshots can be heard outside the home of a Malaysian student in Sudan where military unrest has killed over 50 people so far.

The 25-year old Islamic studies student, who only wants to be known as Anas, has been staying put at his home in the Al-Mamoura neighbourhood in the Sudanese capital of Khartoum since the unrest began on Saturday.

“I just stay home as I can hear the loud gunshots outside,” he said in an interview.

Anas, who is among the few Malaysian students studying in Sudan, won’t be going out for now, not even to get food to break fast.

“I still have some food left at home. I am not sure if the shops are open as the locals are also not going out. I haven’t been to the Malaysian Embassy yet,” he said.

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Malaysian Students Association of Sudan president Mohd Hassan Karimi said Malaysian students in the country are currently safe.

“The situation was under control before I left for Saudi Arabia but I am unsure when I can return to Sudan due to the current situation,” he said.

In a statement earlier, Malaysia has strongly condemned the ongoing hostilities between Sudan’s army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

The Foreign Ministry said both sides should resolve any differences through peaceful means and avoid any action that could further exacerbate tensions.

“In the spirit of the holy month of Ramadan, Malaysia calls on both sides to immediately cease hostilities and exercise utmost restraint, reflecting the Islamic tenets of peace and compassion.

“Meaningful dialogue and negotiations are the only way forward towards restoring peace and stability in Sudan,” it said.

Clashes between Sudan’s army and the RSF paramilitary group erupted on Saturday with gunfire heard in several parts of Khartoum.

According to witnesses, shootings were also spotted in adjoining cities.

The tensions stem from a disagreement between the military, headed by Gen Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and the RSF, led by Gen Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, about how the paramilitary force should be integrated into the armed forces and what authority should oversee that process.

The two sides have been competing for power as political factions negotiate to form a transitional government after a 2021 military coup.

So far, at least 56 people have been killed and 595 injured in clashes across Sudan, according to a medical group known as Central Committee of Sudan Doctors.

Malaysia is urging all parties to prioritise the safety and security of civilians, and to work together towards creating a peaceful and stable environment in which all Sudanese can thrive and prosper.

“Malaysia remains in solidarity with the people of Sudan and will continue to support efforts towards a lasting and peaceful resolution to the conflict.

“We pray for the well-being and safety of the people of Sudan during this challenging time,” said Wisma Putra.

In a statement, PETRONAS confirmed that its sole employee and other Malaysians, including students, at the PETRONAS Sudan Complex, have been accounted for and are safe.

The company said other employees are also unharmed in their own homes or outside of the country.

“PETRONAS is monitoring the situation closely and working with the relevant authorities to ensure the safety of all personnel. This remains our top priority,” it said.

Wisma Putra also confirmed that all 29 registered Malaysians, mostly students, are accounted for and confirmed safe.

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