Sudan: More Sudanese stranded in Wadi Halfa as Egyptian visa takes 'three months’

Wadi Halfa – Sudanese stranded in Wadi Halfa, near the border with Egypt, are suffering from dire humanitarian conditions as the city overflows and prices soar. It is said that it takes three months to get a visa to Egypt.

Osman Ali Wadi told Radio Tabanga from Halfa that about 5,000 people gather daily in front of the Egyptian embassy to apply for and receive visas.

„The embassy forces visa applicants to prove their financial ability to stay in Egypt. The whole procedure now takes three months.”

Cairo’s decision on June 10 to oblige all Sudanese to obtain a visa to enter Egypt* has seriously complicated the situation. „Entry procedures at Orgin Crossing have become more complicated.”

Most of the stranded people live in schools and government offices in Wadi Halfa, where a bed in a simple hotel costs SDG 3,000, he added. „The cost of renting a house has gone up from SDG 10,000 to SDG 40,000, exploiting the needs of stranded people.”

He criticized the price disparity in various shops, despite the fact that Egyptian goods, including bread made from Egyptian flour, are available duty-free.

The source further warned of water and power cuts due to increasing pressure in the city. „Water supply comes twice a week, but power outages have increased due to population density in the city,” he said.

„Earlier this month, we also witnessed severe shortage of cooking gas, but the crisis eased as exports came in from Port Sudan.”