270 killed as deadly military conflict in Sudan rages into 4th day

(Xinhua) 15:41, April 19, 2023

This photo taken on April 15, 2023 shows smoke rising in Khartoum, capital of Sudan. (Photo by Mohamed Khidir/Xinhua)

KHARTOUM, April 19 (Xinhua) -- Fighting between the Sudanese Army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in Sudan has killed about 270 people and wounded more than 2,600 as of Tuesday, with gunfire and explosions still heard here across the city.

Violent clashes resumed on Tuesday morning near the Sudanese army command, the presidential palace, Khartoum International Airport, and around some RSF bases south of the capital, according to media reports.

The RSF on Tuesday announced that it accepted an international initiative for a ceasefire with the Sudanese army for 24 hours for humanitarian reasons, while the Sudanese army said in a statement that it was "not aware of any coordination with the mediators and the international community about a truce, and the announcement by the rebellion of a 24-hour truce tends to cover up the crushing defeat it is about to receive within hours."

In the worsening situation, fighting across Sudan severely limits humanitarian operations, UN humanitarians said on Tuesday.

"There is limited ability to move personnel and supplies," the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said. "The targeting and looting of humanitarian premises must stop. Attacks on humanitarian assets and facilities will severely impact our ability to resume lifesaving operations."

World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said there were reports that some medical facilities in Sudan were being looted or used for military purposes, adding that hospitals in the country were experiencing shortages of medical personnel and supplies, as well as power outages, fuel shortages for power generators, water cuts, and other factors that create challenges for health workers and ambulances and put more lives at risk.

"WHO calls on all parties to comply with their obligations under international law. Healthcare facilities and workers must never be a target, especially in a situation like this where there are thousands of civilians who need access to emergency care," the director general said, adding that "all parties must ensure unrestricted and safe access to health facilities for those injured and everyone in need of medical care."

Sudan's Foreign Ministry on Tuesday accused the RSF of attacking the headquarters of diplomatic missions in the capital.

"The desperate moves by the rebel Rapid Support Forces with armored vehicles and heavy weapons among residential neighborhoods and civilian places have put the headquarters and staff of diplomatic missions and international and regional organizations under imminent danger," the ministry said in a statement.

Fighting between the Sudanese Army and the RSF erupted on Saturday morning. The two sides have been using tanks, artillery, fighter jets and other heavy weapons in their exchange of fire.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Wu Chaolan)


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