Дым над зданиями в Хартуме, Судан, на фоне сообщений о столкновениях в городе, 15 апреля 2023 года InternationalIndiaAfricaClashes broke out between the Sudanese Army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in Khartoum on Saturday morning, a Sputnik correspondent reported from the scene.The sound of gunfire was heard outside a military camp of Sudan’s Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in the capital of Khartoum on Saturday morning. Local media reported that clashes broke out between the RSF and the Sudanese Army in Khartoum.Follow our LIVE UPDATES on Sputnik Africa website
Later, the RSF said that the country’s regular army had attacked the paramilitary’s base in Khartoum.”Today, the Rapid Support Forces were surprised by a large group of armed forces that entered the headquarters of the Soba military camp in Khartoum. They besieged the forces there and then attacked them with all kinds of heavy and light weapons,” the RSF said in a statement.AfricaMilitary Vehicles Reportedly Arriving in North Sudan as Tensions Between RSF, Army Rise14 April, 03:28 GMTThe paramilitary group added that it had contacted international mediators on the situation in Sudan, as well as influential Sudanese lawmakers.Sudan’s General Intelligence Service (GIS) at the same time described the actions of the country’s Rapid Support Forces as mutinous.
Did RSF Take Control Over Int’l Airport, Presidential Palace… or Not?
Later in the day, the RSF stated that they had taken control of Khartoum International Airport and the Merowe Air Base.”The Rapid Support Forces, defending themselves, inflicted heavy losses on the attacking forces and managed to take control of the airport and the base in Merowe. The aggressors were also driven out of the headquarters of the Soba camp [in Khartoum], and the Khartoum airport was taken under control,” the RSF said.The Republican Palace, serving as the working residence of Sudan’s leadership and the main symbol of state power in the country, reportedly also came under control of the RSF.”Sudan’s Rapid Support Forces have seized the Republican Palace,” the RSF claimed in a statement.The Sudanese Army, however, said that it continued to keep the Presidential Palace and other strategic objects under its control, despite the RSF stating otherwise.
"Our military are countering the attempts of the Rapid Support Forces to seize strategical objects, including the Republican Palace, the General Command and the headquarters of the Sovereignty Council," the Sudanese Army said in a statement.
Sudanese Army Bombing RSF Military Bases Near Khartoum
Later, the Sudanese Army said that its fighter jets are carrying out strikes on bases of the Rapid Support Forces near the capital Khartoum.”The Sudanese air force is destroying the RSF camps of Taiba and Soba and chasing members of the RSF who try to disguise themselves among civilians,” the army’s statement read.
How the World Reacts
The League of Arab States (LAS) said that Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit condemned the use of weapons in Sudan and called for an immediate ceasefire.”Aboul Gheit condemns the use of arms in Sudan and calls for an immediate ceasefire,” the LAS said in a statement.The LAS chief noted the need to stop the escalation and the bloodshed, adding that the organization is ready to intervene to investigate the events in Sudan.The European Union also calle upon the sides to the conflict in Sudan to stop violence immediately.”Alarming news of fighting in #Sudan. The EU calls on all forces to stop the violence immediately. An escalation will only aggravate the situation. Protection of citizens is a priority,” EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on Twitter.The neighboring Egypt earlier in the day called on all sides to exercise restraint.”The Arab Republic of Egypt is following with great concern the situation in Sudan following the ongoing clashes there and calls on all Sudanese parties to show maximum restraint,” the ministry said in a statement.Al-Arabiya broadcaster reported, citing sources that Cairo has reached out to both parties in Sudan to urge them to cease fire without preconditions.The Russian embassy in Khartoum on Saturday expressed concern over the escalation in Sudan and called on the adversaries to cease fire and negotiate.”The embassy expresses its concern about the escalation of violence. We call on the Sudanese sides for an early ceasefire and negotiations to stabilize the situation in Sudan, which is a friendly country to us. At the same time, we call on the Russian citizens in Sudan to stay at home and remain calm,” the diplomatic mission said in a statement.US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in turn said that he is deeply concerned about the situation unfolding in Sudan, calling on all parties to stop the violence immediately and avoid further escalation.”Deeply concerned about reports of escalating violence between the Sudanese Armed Forces and Rapid Support Forces … We urge all actors to stop the violence immediately and avoid further escalations or troop mobilizations and continue talks to resolve outstanding issues,” Blinken said on Twitter.The top US diplomat also said that Washington is in touch with the embassy in Khartoum.
How the Conflict Began
On Thursday, the Sudanese Army issued a rare statement saying that the RSF’s deployment in Khartoum and several cities was illegal and had taken place without coordination with the armed forces. According to media reports, the army’s statement was prompted by the sudden deployment of RSF units near the airport in the northern city of Merowe.AfricaSudan Reportedly Postpones Civilian Rule Agreement Over Military Reform Issues6 April, 10:50 GMTAl-Arabiya reported, citing sources, that the Sudanese Army had also deployed units in Merowe, “in case of a lack of security.” The broadcaster said the Sudanese Army had given the RSF a certain amount of time to vacate the city. For its part, the paramilitary command said its presence in Merowe was part of its tasks and duties.The Forces of Freedom and Change, the Sudanese opposition coalition, said on April 6 that the signing of a final political agreement that would establish a transitional civilian authority in Sudan had been postponed again due to a lack of consensus among the military parties.
Gen. Abdel Fattah Burhan, chairman of the Transitional Sovereignty Council and commander-in-chief of the Sudanese military, and Gen. Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, his deputy and commander of the RSF, could not agree on the process of integrating the RSF into the regular army.
In October 2021, the Sudanese Army under Burhan overthrew the government in a military coup, declaring a state of emergency and establishing a transitional sovereign council under his leadership. Subsequent protests forced Burhan to sign a pact that called for the reinstatement of Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, the release of all political prisoners, the holding of elections in July 2023, and the transfer of power to an elected civilian government. The political crisis continued, however, and Hamdok stepped down on January 2, 2022.