Clashes continue as Sudan ceasefire starts
Khartoum – April 23, 2023
Skirmishes and air raids have been reported in and around Khartoum despite the start of a seven-day ceasefire yesterday evening. This is the seventh ceasefire since the start of the clashes.
Not long after the ceasefire officially started at 21.45 local time, air strikes were reported west of Khartoum. Witnesses have already reported further clashes and hostilities this morning.
Heavy fighting also took place right before the truce was supposed to start. Civilians reported SAF airstrikes only hours before the armistice would enter into force.
Khartoum and Khartoum North witnessed heavy bombardments yesterday. People living in East Nile in Khartoum North told Radio Dabanga that air strikes were launched on parts of the locality.
In Omdurman, several people were injured during battles between the army and the RSF in El Mohandesin, Hamed El Nil, and El Rashideen on Sunday, medic Salah Hashim told Radio Dabanga.
He said that the exchange of artillery fire between the army and the RSF lasted for hours.
“The areas did not witness any fighting on Monday morning, perhaps because of the truce.”
The SAF reported yesterday at about 21:00, 45 minutes before the ceasefire was supposed to come into effect, that “the entire country is witnessing stability in the operational situation, except for sporadic clashes with the rebel militia in parts of the national capital”.
In a statement posted on social media, the SAF said that their forces “launched strikes against the rebels in several locations” in Khartoum, Khartoum North (Bahri) and Omdurman, which resulted in the destruction of a large number of vehicles, weapons and equipment, and dozens of dead and wounded.
“Our forces clashed with a group of rebel militia on El Ghaba Street [in western Khartoum], inflicting heavy losses on them, and destroying and seizing a number of armed vehicles.”
The RSF claimed on social media that their “forces repelled an attack by the coup forces [SAF] in the Arab Market area, Khartoum Stadium, and El Hurriya Street, inflicting heavy losses on them and seizing 7 vehicles with all their equipment, destroying 2 armored vehicles, killing a number of coup plotters, and chasing the fugitives to El Ghaba Street”.
The SAF and RSF both accused the other of continued looting in the capital and claimed to have inflicted losses on the opposing side.
Hashim reported that it was difficult for people and humanitarian workers to move around, prices are high, food in the markets is scarce, and hospitals are closed. The security situation is further deteriorating as street gangs are spreading and robberies, burglaries, and thefts have increased.
“Markets in the capital witnessed widespread looting. This is still ongoing as people search for what is left inside stores and warehouses, which prompted many merchants to transport their goods to their homes.”
He said that the ceasefire is “desperately is needed to meet the affected people’s need for relief, treatment, and the necessities of life”. The cities are also in urgent need of field hospitals.
The Sudanese Doctors Union recorded 863 civilian deaths and 3,531 injuries up until May 20. Fighters are not included in the statistics and real numbers are likely to be much higher as many bodies are left on the streets or buried anonymously.
More than a million Sudanese were forced to flee their homes.