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Sudan: Army Hits Paramilitary Bases With Air Strikes Amidst Power Struggle

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In a deadly power struggle with opposing paramilitary forces, the Sudanese army seemed to take the upper hand on Sunday, bombarding their bases with air strikes, according to witnesses.

According to one doctor’s group, since the conflict in Sudan began, at least 97 civilians have died and 365 have been injured.

The paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), under the command of General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, also known as Hemedti, the deputy leader of the council, and army troops loyal to General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, head of Sudan’s transitional governing Sovereign Council, erupted in conflict on Saturday.

A dispute over the RSF’s integration into the military in context of going in direction of civilian rule caused the first such breakout since both joined forces to overthrow veteran Islamist tyrant Omar Hassan al-Bashir in 2019.

Residents in the Kafouri district of Bahri, which has an RSF base, across the Nile river from the capital Khartoum, reported hearing warplanes and artillery boom as night fell.

According to eyewitnesses who spoke to British news agency Reuters, the army was resuming airstrikes against RSF bases in Omdurman, Khartoum’s sister city over the Nile, and the nearby Bahri neighbourhoods of Kafouri and Sharg El-Nil, forcing RSF fighters to flee.

The UN Security Council, the European Union, the African Union, and the United States have all called for an immediate end to the hostilities that have the potential to exacerbate instability in a wider region that is already unstable.

Rising tensions over the RSF’s incorporation into the military were the cause of the fighting that broke out over the weekend. The signing of an international agreement with political parties on a transition to democracy following a military coup in 2021 has been postponed due to disagreement on the timeline for that.

Khartoum Crash Reports

The army stated that there were ongoing fights near its headquarters in central Khartoum and that RSF forces had set up snipers atop buildings, but added that these incidents were being “monitored and dealt with.”

Earlier on Sunday, Reuters was informed by witnesses and locals that the army had conducted airstrikes on RSF outposts and barracks in the Khartoum region, managing to destroy the majority of the paramilitaries’ infrastructure.

On Sunday, neighbours and regional organisations stepped up their efforts to put an end to the violence. The office of Kenyan President William Ruto posted on Twitter that Egypt has offered to mediate the dispute between the warring factions in Sudan and that the Intergovernmental Authority on Development of the regional African bloc intends to dispatch the presidents of Kenya, South Sudan, and Djibouti as soon as feasible.

As fierce artillery and gun fights continued into Sunday in Khartoum, they reported that the army had also wrested control back from the RSF over a significant portion of the presidential palace and other important sites.

RSF members were still present within the army-besieged Khartoum International Airport, but the army refrained from attacking them in order to avoid causing serious damage, according to witnesses.

But hundreds of heavily armed RSF fighters stationed inside communities in Khartoum and other cities, they claimed, presented a significant challenge that no government was able to handle.

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