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US to make additional funding push in response to Sudan conflict

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The U.S. will make a push of more than a hundred million in additional funding to respond to the conflict in Sudan as Washington seeks to spur international response at a donor conference on the humanitarian crisis this month.

U.S. Special Envoy to Sudan Tom Perriello, Reuters/Mohamed Abd El Ghany

The U.S. will make a push of more than a hundred million in additional funding to respond to the conflict in Sudan as Washington seeks to spur international response at a donor conference on the humanitarian crisis this month, the U.S. Special Envoy to the North African country said on Wednesday.

Special Envoy Tom Perriello said he hopes that partners around the world will put greater priority on the Sudanese civil war and that more countries will step up at a donor conference in Paris on April 15.

The date marks a year since the conflict erupted after long-simmering tensions erupted into heavy fighting between the army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

"The international response has been pitiful. We're at 5% of the needed amount," said Perriello, adding that the U.S. has already committed over a billion dollars in humanitarian relief to the conflict.

"We'll be doing another nine-figure push around this," he said, without elaborating.

The war has pushed millions into extreme hunger, created the world's largest displacement crisis, and triggered waves of ethnically driven killings and sexual violence in the Darfur region of western Sudan.

Perriello said that the United States will continue to look at actions on the ground and act accordingly to raise costs through sanctions and other means where appropriate. Since the war began, the U.S. has sanctioned the deputy head of the RSF, other major businesses owned by both sides, and other entities.

Perriello also said that peace talks were unlikely to resume on April 18, the date he previously said Washington was eyeing.

Saudi Arabia and the U.S. led unsuccessful talks in Jeddah last year to try to reach a truce.

"I don't think we'll see meetings in Jeddah on the 18th," he said, adding that Washington is not waiting for formal talks to begin but that negotiations are happening every day.

"We would love frankly for the talks to have started last week. But what we know is the Saudis are committed to the talks, to talks that include a broader set of the key actors, and we are hoping that they will commit to a date."

(Reporting by Daphne Psaledakis in Washington and Nafisa Eltahir in CairoEditing by Don Durfee, Marguerita Choy and Lisa Shumaker)

Reporting by Daphne Psaledakis in Washington and Nafisa Eltahir in Cairo

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