TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Sudan has notified the United Nations that it has declared Volker Perthes, the special representative of the UN secretary-general in Sudan and head of the UN Integrated Transition Assistance Mission, Sudan (UNITAMS), “persona non grata”.
“The Government of the Republic of Sudan has notified the Secretary-General of the United Nations that it has declared Mr Volker Perthes … persona non grata as of today,” Sudan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Thursday.
Perthes was in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on Thursday for a series of diplomatic talks, according to the UN mission’s Twitter feed.
UN chief Antonio Guterres said late last month that he was “shocked” by a letter from Sudanese army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan reportedly requesting the replacement of his special envoy, Perthes.
Perthes, a former academic who has headed the Sudan mission since 2021, has staunchly defended the UN against accusations of inflaming the conflict, saying those responsible are “the two generals at war”, Al Jazeera reported.
Fighting between the Sudanese army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) since April has ravaged the capital, Khartoum, and the western region of Darfur.
More than 1.4 million people have been displaced within Sudan and a further 476,800 have fled to neighboring countries, most of which are already struggling with poverty and internal conflict, according to estimates from the International Organization for Migration (IOM).