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17 dead in air strikes on Khartoum

17 dead in air strikes on Khartoum

According to official figures, 17 people, including five children, were killed in air strikes launched by the army on the Sudanese capital, Khartoum. On Saturday, the health authority said some 25 homes had been destroyed in the Mayo district, confirming reports from residents. The army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces have been engaged in a bitter power struggle for weeks, from which the civilian population is suffering more and more.

The regular forces have air superiority over Khartoum and the neighboring cities of Omdurman and Bahri. The RSF, in turn, has established itself in residential areas. On Friday and Saturday, the military appears to have stepped up airstrikes and bombed several neighborhoods while mediators push for a new ceasefire.

The power struggle between the army and the RSF broke out on April 15. Hundreds of people have been killed since then. Some 2.2 million people have been displaced during the fighting. Hundreds of thousands of people have fled to neighboring countries – more than 270,000 to Chad alone. Observers fear destabilization of the entire region.

The May bombing is the latest in a series of air and artillery attacks on poor and densely populated areas. Most of the residents there cannot find safety elsewhere. Across Khartoum, millions of people have been cut off from electricity and water supplies. They do not have access to medical care. Food has already been rationed. There is always loot.

In a speech released by the army on Friday, Major General Yasser Al-Atta urged people to stay away from homes occupied by the RSF. “Because by then, we will attack them everywhere,” he said. “There are bullets between us and these rebels,” he said, apparently rejecting further mediation attempts.

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According to informed sources, the recent talks in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, mediated by representatives of the United States and Saudi Arabia, were about a possible ceasefire for three days and one for five days during the upcoming Eid al-Fitr. No agreement has been reached yet. Both sides have agreed to cease-fire several times, but have repeatedly violated it. Neither side currently has the advantage in the fight.