'Enlist Or Die': Fear, A Looming Famine And An Ultimatum Grow Sudan Militia

In mid-December, the powerful paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) swept into Sudan’s central Al Jazira state, known as the country’s breadbasket, with an ultimatum: “Enlist or die.” Since then, the militia group has sought to use food as a weapon, withholding supplies from the hungry in a bid to coerce men and boys to join its ranks, according to over three dozen witnesses. The RSF has been battling the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) for control of the country since a civil war broke out between the two rival factions in April last year. Both forces have been accused of killing civilians. CNN reporting last year exposed an RSF-led campaign to enslave men and women, and other atrocities by the paramilitary group and its allied militias in Sudan’s western Darfur region – an area already scarred by what has been widely described as the 21st century’s first genocide.

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