The International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) views with grave concern the ongoing conflict and humanitarian disaster unfolding in Sudan. We share the hope of many that the current, fragile ceasefire will lead to genuine, sustained cessation of hostilities, and that efforts to bring the warring parties to the negotiation table in good faith will succeed as soon as possible.
IFES’s first priority during this conflict has been and will continue to be the safety and well-being of our team in Sudan. At this time, we are fortunate to report that no member of IFES’s staff has suffered physical harm, despite the great continued risk.
Following the end of Omar al-Bashir’s 30-year rule in 2019, IFES has supported Sudan’s democratic transition, which is important both for Sudan’s people and for the region. The conflict represents a tragic setback for democracy in Sudan, but long-term prospects for democratic governance have not collapsed. As IFES board member Jeffrey Feltman, former U.S. Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa, has noted, “Members of the heroic Sudanese Resistance Committees that were the primary engine behind Bashir’s ouster may be sheltering in place at the moment, but I find it unlikely they are going to surrender their aspirations for democratic, civilian rule.” The commitment by the people of Sudan to Sudanese democracy reflects the insatiable desire of people all over the world to live in free, open, and secure societies.
IFES remains steadfast in our support for Sudan’s peaceful democratic transition. The setbacks to democracy caused by this senseless conflict will only be overcome with sustained, intensive attention and support from the international community. IFES is fully committed to continuing the work of democracy in Sudan with our local, regional, and international partners.