• World - Africa
  • Updated: May 25, 2023

Sudan's Week-Long Truce Threatened By Fighting Among Warring Leaders

Sudan's Week-Long Truce Threatened By Fighting Among Warring


Sporadic clashes between the Sudanese army and a powerful paramilitary force spilt over into Thursday, puncturing the relative calm in the capital of Khartoum and raising the risk that a week-long internationally-brokered truce would crumble.

The ceasefire, which is being overseen by Saudi Arabia and the US as well as the warring parties, was struck after five weeks of fighting in Khartoum and flare-ups in other regions of Sudan, particularly the western province of Darfur.

Sudan's army is at odds with the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), and the violence has exacerbated a humanitarian catastrophe, driven nearly 1.3 million people to evacuate their homes, and threatens to destabilize the wider area.

The army, under career officer General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, depends on airpower, whilst the RSF, led by former militia commander General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, dubbed Hemedti, has fanned out and taken shelter in Khartoum's streets.

It is unclear if either side has gained an advantage in a battle that threatens to destabilize regional countries and cause a large-scale humanitarian disaster.

The cease-fire was reached on Saturday in Jeddah, after discussions brokered by Saudi Arabia and the United States. 

Previous ceasefire declarations have failed to halt the violence.

The army and RSF both issued statements late Wednesday accusing one other of breaking the deal.

The RSF said it was compelled to defend itself against army ground, artillery, and air strikes. 

In reply, the army accused the RSF of attacking the country's mint, army airbases, and several cities west of the city.

The Sudanese military released a statement accusing the RSF of violating the cease-fire. 

They stated that they had repulsed the onslaught and destroyed six enemy vehicles.

The conflict erupted in mid-April as plans for an internationally backed political transition toward elections under a civilian government were set to be finalised.

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