The U.S. military evacuated embassy staff and their families from Sudan amid fighting between the Sudanese army and a militia group.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken released a statement late on Saturday (April 22) night, confirming that the U.S. embassy in Khartoum had been temporarily suspended and that they had “safely evacuated all U.S. personnel and their dependents.”
In the statement, Blinken described the decision to suspend operations at one of the U.S. embassies as being a “difficult decision,” but noted that the “safety” of personnel is his “first priority.”
Blinken explained that the “widespread fighting” in Sudan that has “caused significant numbers of civilian deaths and injuries and damage to essential infrastructure” had been an “unacceptable risk” to U.S. embassy personnel.
The Secretary of State also commended the U.S. military forces and teams on the ground for their “skill and professionalism” in carrying out the evacuation mission.
Blinken also noted that the State Department would continue to help Americans in Sudan plan their own security and provide regular updates to American citizens in the region.
Early Sunday (April 23), which involved at least six aircraft, was completed and was carried out in coordination with the paramilitary Rapid Support Force (RSF), according to reporting by The Washington Post.
President Joe Biden also released a statement on Saturday, describing being “proud of the extraordinary commitment” of U.S. ambassadorial staff, who performed their duties with courage and professionalism, adding he was “grateful” for U.S. soldiers who brought personnel to safety.
Biden also expressed gratitude to “Djibouti, Ethiopia and Saudi Arabia,” who he described as being “critical to the success of our operation.”