US sanctions top Sudanese paramilitary official

The United States has targeted a top Sudanese paramilitary official in the highest-profile use of sanctions since the current conflict began in Sudan.

Washington has sanctioned Abdelrahim Dagalo, Rapid Support Forces (RSF) deputy leader, over human rights abuses during the group’s clash with Sudan’s army.

The move, announced on Wednesday, is an apparent response to the deadly violence seen recently in West Darfur, which the RSF is accused of perpetrating along with allied militias.

Mr Dagalo has been accused by the US of being connected to abuses such as “conflict-related sexual violence and killings based on ethnicity”.

The RSF has allegations by conflict monitors, rights groups and witnesses that it is behind the violence in Darfur.

Abdelrahim Dagalo – brother of RSF commander Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, known as Hemedti – is the first official on either side to be sanctioned since the start of the war.

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