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US announces direct aid to Sudanese public

Says it will bypass government, military

The US Agency for International Development (USAID) is moving forward with providing financial support to civil society organizations in Sudan, after the US government froze its aid to the country following the military coup last October.

Khartoum: AlTaghyeer

The agency’s director, Samantha Power, announced they will be cutting of all forms of funding to the government of Sudan, opting instead to directly support to the Sudanese people.

Power denounced the “terrible violence” with which the coup authorities confront peaceful protesters.

“Since the military takeover, Sudanese security forces have killed more than 80 civilian protesters—including 2 last week. USAID has cut all funding to the government, expanding our support for the Sudanese people fighting this horrific violence,” she said in a tweet.

The US Senate had allocated funding in 2020 to support democracy and a civilian-led transitional government in Sudan.

Washington however froze aid to Khartoum after the army seized power on October 25 last year.

After reviewing its support, USAID Deputy Director for Policy and Programming, Isobel Coleman, said this year, USAID will devise a strategy accommodate the $700 million in spending previously approved by US Congress for Sudan.

“The agency will do this in a way that goes beyond the military,” she said during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing.

The agency will also help with $108 million to support the growth of civil society organizations across the country.

Coleman said USAID will provide training and civic education “to strengthen them and better prepare them for this eventual transition.”

USAID is also funding the relocation of local communities to the capital, Khartoum, so that they can participate in the ongoing dialogue led by the United Nations Integrated Transitional Assistance Mission in Sudan.

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