Sudanese Army Suspends Talks over Ceasefire: Diplomatic Source
31 May 2023 21:22
Islam Times - Sudan's army suspended talks on Wednesday over a ceasefire and enabling humanitarian access, a Sudanese diplomatic source said, raising fears of fresh bloodshed and chaos.
The talks with the rival paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) began in early May and had produced a declaration of commitments to protecting civilians and two short-term ceasefire deals that had been repeatedly violated, Reuters reported.
The army and the RSF had agreed to extend a week-long ceasefire deal by five days just before it was due to expire late on Monday.
The two sides have violated one ceasefire after another, raising concerns of prolonged violence which could destabilise other countries in the region.
Residents reported heavy clashes in southern Khartoum and in Omdurman across the River Nile until late on Tuesday.
The truce was brokered and is being remotely monitored by Saudi Arabia and the United States, which say it has been violated by both sides but has still allowed for the delivery of aid to an estimated 2 million people.
The war has forced nearly 1.4 million people to flee their homes, including more than 350,000 that have crossed into neighboring countries.
Areas of the capital have been hit by widespread looting and frequent cuts to power and water supplies. Most hospitals have been put out of service.
The United Nations, some aid agencies, embassies and parts of Sudan's central government have moved operations to Port Sudan, in Sudan's Red Sea state, the main shipping hub which has seen little unrest.
Leaders of the army and the RSF had held the top positions on Sudan's ruling council since former leader Omar al-Bashir was toppled during a popular uprising in 2019.
They staged a coup in 2021 as they were due to hand leadership of the council to civilians, before falling out over the chain of command and restructuring of the RSF under the planned transition.
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