UN Report says RSF Using CAR as “Supply Line”

Sébastien Gray
Sébastien Gray
Sébastien is a published journalist and historicist with over six years of experience in freelance journalism and research. His primary expertise is in African conflict and politics, with additional specialization in Israeli/Palestinian and Armenia/Azerbaijan conflicts. Sébastien serves as the deputy desk chief for Africa.

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According to a UN experts report, the Sudanese paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) is using the neighbouring Central African Republic (CAR) not only as a “supply line” for their operations in Sudan, but also as a recruiting ground in order to bolster their ranks.

Foreign Involvement

According to the UN Experts report, the RSF has been using the Am Dafok area of the CAR as a logistics and supply hub in order to increase its operability in Sudan, and allow for better movement. Am Dafok is a town which lies upon the border between Sudan and the CAR in South Darfur, and has acted in the past as an area of economic prominence. The RSF first seized control of the Sudanese side of the border in June of 2023.

Along with the outbreak of the war in Sudan in April of last year, militant activity in the Vakaga Prefecture of the CAR has increased, in particular around Am Dafok. The area has become rife with several prominent Central African militant organizations who have been cooperating with each other.

According to the UN, the RSF has been cooperating with these groups as well.

A number of militants from Central African groups have been recruited by the RSF to go and fight in Sudan, representing a big security risk for both the CAR, as well as the Sudanese military government. While the RSF has gained manpower in order to continue their fight against the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF), the CAR’s militant groups have been able to use RSF held Sudanese territory to launch attacks in Vakaga.

A photo of fighters from the Sudanese paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (Photo from AFP/Getty Images).

Specifically, the report states that the “Popular Front for the Rebirth of the Central African Republic has been participating in the fighting in Sudan since August 2023.”

The report states that Am Dafok, Sam Ouandja, the Ndah mining site, and the Haute-Kotto Prefecture in the CAR have been primary recruitment spots for the RSF.

The report from the Panel of Experts was to monitor the status of sanctions that had been imposed upon the CAR.

Regional Spillover

The use of the CAR for recruitment and supply lines confirms the fears of many that the war in Sudan could lead to a regional spillover. Many foreign entities have warned against such a spillover, which would be detrimental for the wider region. Stability has already been significantly weakened with the hundreds of thousands of Sudanese refugees that have left Sudan because of the fighting.

For the CAR, the UN stated the Sudan war has already had “substantial consequences on the situation in the Central African Republic.”

In South Sudan, the influx of refugees has worsened their hunger crisis. 73% of South Sudan’s population is in need of aid, a bar which the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) and other humanitarian organizations struggle to meet. South Sudan has come to host approximately 330,000 refugees, the majority of which are from Sudan.

The UN has urged foreign and regional groups to not become involved with the fighting.