The Rapid Support Force (RSF) in Sudan has denied any links to the Wagner group, a Russian private military company (PMC) that has been accused of operating in several conflict zones around the world. The denial comes amid reports that the Wagner group has been operating in Sudan, allegedly providing security for gold mines in the Darfur region.
The RSF, which was formed in 2013, is a paramilitary force that is part of the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF). The force has been accused of committing human rights abuses against civilians in the Darfur region and other parts of the country. The RSF has denied these accusations and has maintained that it is committed to maintaining internal security and combating terrorism in Sudan.
The Wagner group, on the other hand, is a private military company that has been linked to the Russian government. The company has been accused of operating in several conflict zones around the world, including Syria, Libya, and the Central African Republic. The group has been accused of committing human rights abuses and has been subject to international sanctions.
Reports emerged in March 2021 that the Wagner group was operating in Sudan, allegedly providing security for gold mines in the Darfur region. The reports suggested that the Wagner group was working with the RSF and that the two forces had established a joint command center in the area.
Also, since the start of the conflict in Sudan, there have been reports by the mainstream media of purported links between the RSF, Russia’s Wagner group, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE. Notably from the CNN.
At least, RSF links with the UAE has been confirmed as one of the militias’ primary source of arms. Remarkably, the UAE also supplies arms to the Sudanese military.
The RSF has denied any links to the Wagner group, stating that it does not have any foreign military personnel operating in the country. The force has also denied any involvement in the security of gold mines in Darfur, stating that it is not responsible for the protection of natural resources in the region.
The RSF official statement reads “On behalf of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) we would like to address the recent article published by CNN. In these times of information warfare and fake news, we stand as the steadfast defenders of truth, justice, and the will of the Sudanese people.”
“We categorically reject the allegations of our involvement with the Wagner group in Sudan’s current conflict. Instead, it is SAF who has aligned themselves with these foreign forces, not RSF”
“As proud Sudanese, we will not stand idle while external forces attempt to dictate the destiny of our nation. Sudan is a land of resilience, and we will never allow it to be fractured or manipulated by foreign powers.”
The RSF’s ultimate goal is “to bring democracy to the people of Sudan without any interference from foreign powers or contentious armed groups.”
The Sudanese government has also denied any knowledge of the Wagner group’s presence in the country. The government has stated that it is committed to maintaining peace and stability in the country and has called for an investigation into the reports of the Wagner group’s operations in Sudan.
The reports of the Wagner group’s operations in Sudan have raised concerns over the group’s activities in the country and its impact on the region’s stability. The reports have also highlighted the need for greater transparency and accountability in the operations of private military companies around the world.