Skip to content
Home ยป Civilians Reportedly Killed During Heavy Fighting In Sudan Between Army And Paramilitary Forces

Civilians Reportedly Killed During Heavy Fighting In Sudan Between Army And Paramilitary Forces

  • by

At least three civilians have reportedly been killed in clashes between Sudan’s army and paramilitary forces in the capital Khartoum.

The country’s doctors trade union said the deaths came during sustained fighting on Saturday, with UK and US embassies in the city both warning their citizens to stay indoors.

Clashes between Sudan’s army and paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) are ongoing around the presidential palace and Khartoum International Airport as both sides fight for control of symbolic sites.

The two parties forged a partnership following the ousting of former leader Omar al Bashir in 2019, but army boss General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan has been the country’s de facto president since a military coup in October 2021.

A new deal signed late last year was supposed to pave the way to democratic elections, but Saturday’s violence erupted following weeks of escalating tensions.

RSF chief Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, better known as Hemedti, has labelled General Al-Burhan a “criminal” and accused his troops of carrying out a coup.

Fighter jets have been seen over the city and two major airlines, the state-owned Saudi carrier Saudia and Egypt’s Egyptair, have suspended flights in and out until further notice.

Residents are camped in their homes as black smoke from heavy gunfire covers areas of the capital, with injured civilians having started pouring into hospitals.

The fighting started early on Saturday morning in southern Khartoum and spread to the rest of the city.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player


Blinken: Sudan is in a ‘fragile situation’ Where is the fighting happening?

The RSF claimed it had seized Khartoum airport and the presidential palace in the city centre.

It said it had also taken an airport and air base in the northern city of Marawi.

The RSF added on Twitter that Armed Forces troops had besieged its headquarters in the southern area of Soba and “launched a sweeping attack with heavy and light weapons”.

Residents told Sky News they could hear gunfire from that direction and close to the presidential palace.

In a statement from the Sudanese army, the military declared the RSF a “rebel force,” describing the paramilitary’s statements as “lies”.

The army said the RSF attacked its military bases in the capital and across the country.

It said it was dealing with “infiltrations” of Khartoum airport, but maintained it still controlled all bases and airports.

Image: A military vehicle and soldiers on a street of Khartoum Britons in Sudan urged to ‘remain indoors’

US ambassador to Sudan, John Godfrey, said he and his embassy staff were sheltering in place as heavy firing was heard in a number of areas.

The British embassy has also warned UK nationals to “remain indoors” as it monitors the situation.

Mr Godfrey said the escalation was “extremely dangerous” and called on senior leadership to stop the clashes.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken described the situation as “fragile”, while EU foreign policy chief Joseph Borrell called on all forces to stop the violence.

‘All-out civil war’

Yassir Abdullah, managing editor of Al-Sudani Newspaper, warned the country was heading for “all-out civil war”.

“This is deeply serious,” he said.

“If there is no intervention from Armed Forces leadership to stop the fighting, we are headed to an all-out civil war.

“This is a threat to the stability of the country as a whole. There are no winners here.”

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player


Sudan: ‘This is the worse case scenario’ Isma’il Kushkush, an independent journalist in Khartoum, told Sky News the conflict was a “worst case scenario” – particularly if, as many fear, it signalled the start of a civil war.

He said most people had heeded the warnings to stay inside as the sound of heavy gunfire dominated the city.

“There’s no one on the streets,” he said.