The below is attributable to Spokesperson Jessica Jennings:
On May 19, Administrator Samantha Power traveled from N’Djamena to Abéché and then to the Gaga Refugee Camp in eastern Chad. The Administrator met with Sudanese refugees who had recently crossed the border and observed the humanitarian response to the urgent needs generated by the ongoing crisis in Sudan. Since the outbreak of fighting in Sudan on April 15, more than 76,000 people have crossed the border into Chad in need of humanitarian assistance and protection.
At Gaga Refugee Camp, Administrator Power spoke directly with recently arrived refugees from Sudan who had just been resettled at the camp and heard their stories of being forced to flee their homes, many not for the first time. She spent time with a group of women and children refugees and heard specifically about the experiences and the extreme hardships they are facing. The Administrator also spoke with humanitarian workers who are providing aid to these refugees and discussed their needs and how the United States and the international community can best support their efforts. Administrator Power expressed her deepest appreciation for their work.
Later in the evening, Administrator Samantha Power met with Transitional President Mahamat Deby. She expressed her appreciation for Chad’s generosity in welcoming and hosting Sudanese and other refugees in Chad. They discussed the importance of the government of Chad facilitating the movement of humanitarian goods and personnel through Chad and into Sudan to assist the scale-up of the humanitarian response. To support life-saving assistance efforts, Administrator Power announced that USAID is providing more than $17 million in additional humanitarian assistance to support vulnerable refugees from Sudan arriving in Chad as well as existing refugees.
At the same time, Administrator Power noted that the failure of military leaders in Sudan to administer a transition to democracy had led to the ongoing conflict. She urged Transitional President Deby to take a different path and ensure meaningful participation of opposition groups and civil society in adopting a new constitution and organizing transparent elections. Further, she called for full accountability for the violent crackdown on demonstrators on October 20, 2022, as well as the immediate release of any protesters who remain in prison. During the meeting, Administrator Power reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to the Chadian people and reiterated that the United States government stands ready to support Chad towards a brighter, democratic future.
The previous evening, Administrator Power met with civil society leaders to learn about the current human rights situation in Chad, as well as to hear their perspectives on the transition process.