© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Halime Adam Moussa, a Sudanese refugee seeking refuge in Chad for the second time, sits next to her shelter, near the border between Sudan and Chad in Koufroun, Chad, May 10, 2023. REUTERS/Zohra Bensemra/File Photo
By Khalid Abdelaziz and Nafisa Eltahir
DUBAI/CAIRO (Reuters) – Khartoum calmed down on Saturday morning as a seven-day truce appeared to reduce fighting between the two rival military factions although it has yet to deliver the humanitarian relief it has offered. promised to the millions trapped in the capital.
A truce signed on Monday by the two fighting sides – the Sudanese military and a paramilitary group known as the Rapid Support Force – is intended to ensure safe passage for humanitarian aid and lead to broader negotiations sponsored by the United States and Saudi Arabia.
On Saturday, witnesses said Khartoum was calmer, although sporadic clashes were reported overnight. Gulf television station Al-Arabiya reported on several clashes northwest of Khartoum and south of Omdurman, a city adjacent to the capital.
In a statement on Saturday, the RSF accused the military of violating the ceasefire and destroyed the country’s mint in an air strike. The military accused the RSF on Friday of targeting the mint.
Meanwhile, the military said Friday’s call for reservists was a partial and constitutional mobilization measure, adding that the military expected a large number of responses. respond to the call.
The conflict that broke out on April 15 has killed at least 730 civilians and forced 1.3 million Sudanese to flee their homes, flee abroad or to safer parts of the country.
Those staying in Khartoum are grappling with breakdowns of services such as electricity, water and phone networks. The looters ransacked houses, mostly in well-off residential areas.
On Saturday, Sudanese police said they were expanding their deployment and also called on retired officers who could help.
“Our neighborhood has become a war zone. Services have collapsed and chaos has spread in Khartoum,” said city resident Ahmed Salih, 52.
“No one bothers to help the people of Sudan, both government and international. We are human beings, where is humanity?” he added.
Aid agencies say that despite the truce, they have struggled to get security and bureaucratic guarantees to transport aid and personnel in safer parts of the country to Khartoum and other hot areas. The warehouse was looted.
Fighting also extended into the fragile Darfur region, affecting the western city of El Geneina most, which has seen fierce militia attacks destroy infrastructure and kill hundreds of people died.
The government’s Violence Against Women and Children Unit said late Friday it had received reports of 25 rapes of women and girls in Darfur and 24 cases of rape in Darfur. Khartoum since the conflict broke out.
It said victims described 43 men wearing RSF uniforms and riding with an RSF license or living in RSF controlled areas.
“The unit expressed deep concern about reports of gang rape, kidnapping…
The RSF has denied reports that its soldiers are engaged in sexual assaults or robberies.
Reuters was unable to independently verify the entity’s allegations.