Residents flee as fighting in Sudan enters day five

Residents flee as fighting in Sudan enters day five

Thousands of residents in Sudan‘s capital, Khartoum, have fled their homes as a result of fierce fighting for supremacy between the regular army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

Witnesses reported seeing people leaving Khartoum in cars and on foot as gunfire and loud explosions shook the city on Wednesday.

As the death toll in the five-day conflict rises, some foreign missions have been planning to evacuate their diplomats and staff.

Authorities in Japan and Tanzania say they are considering missions to evacuate their citizens for safety reasons as a ceasefire agreement between the warring factions collapsed.

Local media reports that India is also coordinating with other countries and international organizations to ensure the safety of Indian nationals in Sudan.

A 24-hour humanitarian ceasefire was agreed on Tuesday between the Sudanese military and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), but it was broken just minutes before it was expected to start at 6PM local time.

Another ceasefire agreement on Wednesday failed to materialise as intensified fighting between rival forces forced many Sudanese to run for their lives.

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The death toll from the fighting is unknown, but the Central Committee of Sudanese Doctors (CCSD) said on Tuesday that at least 174 civilians had been killed.

The United States, European Union, United Kingdom, and 12 other countries said in a joint statement on Wednesday that the death toll had risen to 270. While experts believe the true figure is much higher, with many wounded unable to reach hospitals that have reportedly been shelled.

Meanwhile, the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is expected to discuss the situation in Sudan on Thursday with the heads of the African Union, Arab League and other relevant organisations, says UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric.

“People in Sudan are running out of food, fuel, and other vital supplies. Many urgently need medical care,” Dujarric said.

The ongoing conflict in Sudan is between the RSF, a notorious paramilitary group led by Sudan’s deputy president Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, also known as Hemedti, and army units loyal to the de facto leader, Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan.

The plans to merge the 100,000-member RSF into the army and the question of who would then command the new force are the main points of contention.

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