Warring sides in Sudan partially observe US-brokered ceasefire

Sami Hegazi
6 Min Read

The three-day ceasefire agreement announced in Sudan was partially observed in Khartoum as it came into force on Tuesday amid acceleration in evacuation of foreign residents.

The truce entered its second day but remained fragile amid reports of sporadic clashes, continued overflights by the army and the movement of Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in some cities and neighborhoods.

Clashes broke out between the Sudanese army and the RSF in Khartoum neighbourhoods, and the RSF vehicles headed from the south of Omdurman to the city center. The army accused the rapid support elements of using residential areas to use residents as human shields.

RSF said the army attacked its forces around the presidential palace, the cantonment grounds and Soba simultaneously. “The army commands are not abiding by the truce and the international community must shoulder its responsibilities,” RSF added, while the Sudanese army described the rapid support and its commander as “the nun of the former era.

The Sudanese army has accused the RSF of stealing the distribution trucks belonging to food companies and using them to transport ammunition.

The armed forces are alerting the citizens of North Bahri and even Al-Qari to the fact that the RSF have looted a large number of distribution tanks belonging to food companies, grain mills and overpasses from some road companies, which are being used to transport munitions from their depot, making them military targets,” a Sudanese army statement said on Wednesday.

“We commend our citizens for taking precautions, being cautious and steering clear of these vehicles,” the statement added.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Wednesday called on the warring parties in Sudan to stop fighting, stressing that fighting will not resolve the conflict.

“The conflict in Sudan will not be resolved on the battlefield, nor should it be,” Guterres said in a tweet.

“Sudanese leaders must put the interests of their people first … and keep their guns silent,” he said.

On Monday, Guterres warned that violence in Sudan heralded a “catastrophic conflagration” that could engulf the entire region.

He called on UN Security Council members to exert maximum influence on both sides of the conflict to end the violence, restore order and return to a path of democratic transition.

President Joe Biden’s national security team continues to talk to military leaders from both sides of the conflict in Sudan to support a lasting cessation of hostilities there, said White House spokeswoman Karen Jean-Pierre.

The US official confirmed that the United States is working with Sudanese civil society partners and groups toward a permanent ceasefire and humanitarian arrangements.

The US Department of State also said the US continues to press for an extension of the ceasefire in Sudan, which includes coordination with regional and international partners to help establish a committee to oversee negotiations.

The United States wants to help the warring parties find a way to a sustainable cessation of hostilities through its engagement with the Sudanese military and civilian leaders, deputy spokesman Vedandt Patel told reporters.

President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi affirmed Egypt’s full support for the brotherly Sudanese people in the serious crisis they are going through.

In a phone call from Charles Michel, President of the European Council, Al-Sisi presented the latest developments in Egypt’s efforts to de-escalate and reach a comprehensive and lasting ceasefire, and the contacts it is conducting in this regard with actors at all levels regionally and internationally.

In this context, the president stressed the importance of intensifying efforts to activate the political track and peaceful dialogue, in a way that pushes towards the return of stability and security, and takes into account the supreme interests of the brotherly Sudanese people.

Ambassador Ahmed Abu Zeid, the spokesman of the Egypt’s  Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said that in light of the increasing threats and security risks in the Sudanese capital of Khartoum as a result of continued armed clashes, the members of the diplomatic and consular mission and technical offices of the Egyptian Embassy were transferred on Wednesday from Khartoum as part of the repositioning of the mission to another location in Sudan, so that it can carry out its work and follow up on the plan for the evacuation of Egyptians from Sudan.

He said that the concerned state agencies continue to assess the security situation in Sudan around the clock, and implement the plan for evacuations to ensure their safe return to the homeland, taking into account the highest priority for the safety of citizens and their safe return to the homeland.

Egyptian consular missions in Port Sudan and the Wadi Halfa region continue to assist in the evacuation of Egyptians from Sudan.

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