Sudan: key Khartoum crossing damaged in blast

Still from video showing damage to Halfaya Bridge, Khartoum North, yesterday (Source: Sudan War Monitor)

The Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) exchanged accusations of destroying the Halfaya Bridge, the final remaining link between Khartoum North (Khartoum Bahri) and Omdurman, the sister cities of the capital Khartoum.

Residents of Omdurman told Radio Dabanga that they heard a huge explosion yesterday evening, without knowing the details of what happened. Pictures and clips circulated on social media this morning showed damage to the bridge in the eastern direction.

Halfaya Bridge was the only remaining crossing between Khartoum North and Omdurman, after the Shambat Bridge was destroyed in November 2023.

The army and the RSF had been exchanging control of the strategically important bridge for transporting troops and supplies, before the SAF recently took control of it. “The partial destruction significantly complicates troop movement for both sides across the two cities, which form part of the greater Khartoum metropolitan area”, according to Sudan War Monitor.

In a statement this morning, SAF spokesperson Brig Gen Nabil Abdallah accused the RSF of destroying part of the Halfaya Bridge on the eastern side, causing damage to concrete structures.

The spokesperson described the incident as “part of the RSF’s systematic targeting of the country’s infrastructure”, adding that the RSF resorted to such attempts to “cover up their failure to achieve their goals”.

In response, a spokesperson for the RSF accused the army of destroying the Halfaya Bridge. He claimed the method used to destroy the Halfaya Bridge “was the same one used to destroy the Shambat Bridge, El Jeili refinery, and the Jebel Aulia reservoir”. Both parties had exchanged accusations over the targeting of these structures.

The RSF condemned the incident, describing it as “terrorist sabotage”, and called on regional and international organisations to “monitor and document these war crimes”.

The statement alleged that the army aimed to impede the RSF’s advance on the Wadi Sedna area by sabotaging the bridge.

Key infrastructure, including bridges, public facilities, power stations, and oil refineries, has been partially or completely destroyed amidst the ongoing war. The most recent incident was the bombing of the Khartoum Bahri thermal station on Saturday evening.