Skin On Skin has fled from the ongoing fighting within Sudan’s capital of Khartoum after being stuck in the city with his family for two weeks.
The Australian artist of Sudanese heritage posted a statement yesterday confirming that he has fled Khartoum with his family across the border into South Sudan.
Feeling “mentally and physically exhausted” the statement explains that he will no longer be appearing at Horst Arts & Music festival this weekend as he needs to “take some time at home”.
Since mid-April Khartoum has been the epicentre of a power struggle between the paramilitary group Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and the military of the Republic of Sudan, the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF).
Tensions between both forces escalated after an internationally-backed plan to launch a new transition with civilian parties was due to be signed in early April – on the fourth anniversary of the revolution against the country’s former dictator Omar al-Bashir.
Reuters report that since fighting began, both sides blame each other for provoking the violence. The Sudanese military is accusing the RSF of illegal mobilisation as it moved into key areas of Khartoum trying to seize power with Bashir loyalists.
A seven-day-long ceasefire was planned to run from Thursday (May 4) to allow people to evacuate safely however fighting has continued.
Al-Burhan’s envoy Dafallah Alhaj told Al Jazeera that the ceasefire agreement was “not to mediation regarding the resolution of the conflict”.
“To us, the final resolution will be decided on the ground. Our delegation will not engage in direct talks or even open a channel of communication with the rebels,” he added.
According to The Guardian, over 550 people have been killed however the true total is likely to be much higher as many deaths have gone uncounted.
It’s reported that at least 334,000 people have been displaced inside Sudan with tens of thousands fleeing to Egypt, Chad, South Sudan, Central African Republic and Ethiopia.
Skin on Skin’s statement reads that the journey “was a risky and dangerous trip” but he is “thankfully safe”.
Read Skin on Skin’s full statement below.
Becky Buckle is Mixmag’s Multimedia Editor, follow her on Twitter
Written by: Tim Hopkins