Fighting broke out on Saturday between the government army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces in Sudan’s capital Khartoum and elsewhere in the country, which said it had taken control of the presidential palace in the capital. Reuters reported that at least three civilians were killed in the clashes.
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The leaders of the paramilitary units stated in a “Communication to the People” that in addition to the presidential palace, they “control” Khartoum airport, “several bases in various provinces” and two other airports. – In Meroe and White. The government army says these are lies.
The armed clashes that took place on Saturday in Sudan are the result of a rivalry that has been hidden for weeks between two generals – the de facto commander of the army in the country, Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, and the commander of the Rapid Support Forces, Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, known as “Hemeti”.
During the coup in October 2021, the two leaders formed a joint front to “protect the civilian population from the authorities”. However, as time went on, Hemeti denounced the coup, and sided with the civilians, which brought him into conflict with Burhan. The disagreement between the two most important generals of this African country made it impossible to resolve the internal political crisis.
Rivalry turned into fights
On Saturday, the political dispute escalated into an armed fight, with each accusing the other of starting the attacks.
Leaders of the RSF, which includes former Darfur militiamen, said they were “surprised in the morning by the arrival of a large military force that surrounded their camp in Soba” and accused the government army of “attacking them with all kinds of weapons, heavy and light weapons” in a press statement. arms”.
In turn, army spokesman Major General Nabil Abdullah said that the conflict is the responsibility of the Rapid Support Forces, which “attacked military bases in Khartoum and other places in Sudan.” “The army is doing its duty to protect the country,” Abdullah said. He stressed that the army deployed armored vehicles throughout the capital to block access to the presidential palace and bridges leading to the suburbs and the headquarters of the General Staff.
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The paramilitaries then claimed to have taken control of the presidential palace, which is the de facto residence of Abdel Fattah al-Burhan. In a statement, the army denied this information and said that the country’s air force was carrying out operations “aimed at confronting powerful paramilitary forces.”
The first signs of conflict between the two formations appeared on Thursday, when the army described the “dangerous” deployment of paramilitary forces in Khartoum and other Sudanese cities “without approval or the slightest coordination with the leadership of the armed forces.” Then the military leaders started talking about the approaching “historic turning point”.
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