Smoke rises over the city during ongoing fighting between the Sudanese army and paramilitaries of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in Khartoum, Sudan, 19 April 2023. EPA-EFE/STRINGER

Fighting rages in Sudan despite ceasefire

Khartoum, Apr 27 (EFE).- Sudan’s capital Khartoum woke up to sounds of explosions and anti-aircraft fire on Thursday, on the third and final day of a United States-brokered 72-hour ceasefire agreed between the country’s warring military factions.

Thick columns of black smoke were seen rising in the northern part of Khartoum amid the fighting pitting president Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, who is also commander-in-chief of the armed forces, against his deputy Mohammed Hamdan Daglo (Hemedti), the leader of the powerful Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

Witnesses told Efe that army forces have been hovering over Khartoum Bahri and Kafouri districts on the outskirts of the capital since the early hours of the morning.

The RSF paramilitary group accused the military of attacking its positions in Kafouri with aviation and artillery despite the truce announced Monday midnight in the wake of the heavy fighting that erupted in the northeast African country on April 15.

“The attackers used warplanes and artillery in their assault on an RSF camp, but were met with strong resistance from RSF forces… The coup forces suffered significant losses in the engagement,” the RSF wrote on Twitter.

The Sudanese army and the RSF have been exchanging accusations of taking advantage of the truce to reinforce their troops in Khartoum and prepare for a new round of fighting.

Clashes are concentrated in the northern and western areas of Khartoum, where the international airport, the army’s headquarters, the Republican Palace and other government institutions are located.

Fighting has also been taking place in the western regions of Sudan, especially in the RSF stronghold Darfur.

At least 512 people have been killed and more than 4,000 injured in the fighting, which has taken its toll on the Sudanese health system and displaced tens of thousands of people.

Evacuation operations of foreign nationals continued on Thursday at Port Sudan on the Red Sea coast, one of the least affected areas by the conflict. EFE