Sudan crisis: Fighting flares up despite ceasefire
KHARTOUM, April 27 (NNN-AGENCIES) — Fighting is continuing in parts of Sudan despite a 72-hour ceasefire largely holding. Sudan’s army chief has reportedly approved extending the ceasefire – due to expire on Friday – for 72 hours.
Gen Abdel Fattah al-Burhan gave initial approval to the proposal from the regional African bloc Intergovernmental Authority on Development. The proposal suggests sending envoys from the Sudanese army and rival group Rapid Support Forces (RSF) to Juba in South Sudan to discuss the details.
The current ceasefire began at midnight local time on Monday bringing a pause to a conflict which erupted on April 15 amid a power struggle between the leaders of the army and the RSF. People in Khartoum and Omdurman are finding it difficult to find clean water and food and access to cash.
Explosions and gunfire could still be heard on Wednesday, with warplanes in the air, although it was quieter than before the ceasefire and the situation was good enough for evacuations to continue.
Gangs have also been looting homes and empty buildings, targeting cars and vehicles. Local people fear what will happen after the ceasefire ends. Both sides still man checkpoints but these are fewer in number as some troops have withdrawn to other areas.
The warring factions both claim to control important places like airports and army headquarters. There is no internet access and phone lines are poor. At least 459 people have been killed since the fighting broke out though the actual number is thought to be much higher.
Earlier the World Health Organization said it expected “many more” deaths due to disease, a lack of access to food and water and disruption to health facilities. Several countries have evacuated their nationals since the ceasefire took hold.
Buses carrying evacuees are continuing to leave Khartoum despite soaring prices of fuel and bus tickets.