Joe Boueiz, Olivia Giles
Security, Middle East
America can work to stymie Sudanese military support for the war effort in Yemen by helping to improve economic conditions in Sudan.
Sudan's Political Turmoil Creates Window of Opportunity for Washington
Sudanese protestors succeeded in ousting long-term president Omar al-Bashir in a military coup in early April. Both protestors and international observers saw this feat as a major victory following months of public demonstrations over rising food and fuel prices. However, months later, at a June 3 sit-in demonstration, the military opened fire on civilian protesters, killing more than one hundred people—an act of violence that showed the protestors’ victory was limited. While the United States has shown little interest in the conflict, it should capitalize on this key opportunity to advance its own interests in the Middle East and North Africa region. In the short term, the focus should be on Sudan’s involvement in the Saudi-led campaign in Yemen against Houthi rebels. Since the start of the conflict, there have been around fourteen thousand Sudanese militiamen fighting alongside Saudi-aligned Yemeni militias. By helping to ensure a smooth transition of power, the United States can work to stymie Sudanese military support for the war effort in Yemen by helping to improve economic conditions in Sudan.