An estimated four thousand British citizens have needed evacuation from Sudan. The UK government commenced its evacuation effort on Tuesday, 25th April, after it had reportedly evacuated its diplomats.
By contrast, one day earlier, on Monday 24th April, EU High Representative Josep Borrell announced that 31 flights would have evacuated an estimated 1,200 EU citizens by the end of the day, with a remaining 400 EU citizens left to be evacuated. "There has been an incredible mobilisation of the [EU] Member States" said Mr Borrell, "that have air facilities and air capabilities to move planes, to move soldiers and to move military protection, and taking everybody that they could
The British Ambassador has managed to negotiate an extension of the 72-hour ceasefire between the warring factions to allow for more time. The FCDO said eight flights had airlifted 897 people to Cyprus as of Thursday, 27th April. However, fighting in the capital, Khartoum, continues unabated.
Liberal Democrats Overseas have been concerned for some time on behalf of British citizens abroad about the preparedness of British Embassies and Consulates to help them in times of crisis. This should include keeping up-to-date registers of British citizens living in-country and the ability for the Embassy or Consulate to alert them directly in times of crisis, including earthquakes and other forms of natural disaster.
Liberal Democrats Overseas call for an official enquiry to be held once the emergency is over about the state of preparedness of British Embassies and consulates to assist their citizens in emergencies. The FCDO needs to ensure that assisting British citizens abroad is given a far greater priority than it is now, in line with best practice existing in other comparable European embassies.
Contact for further information or comment:
George Cunningham, Chair Lib Dems Abroad: firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information see the Lib Dem Voice article at: https://www.libdemvoice.org/british-citizen-evacuation-from-sudan-call-for-official-enquiry-73084.html