A commander of the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) has confirmed that fierce fighting is ongoing around the army headquarters, military guest house, airport, and the residence of the army chief, Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, who is the leader of the ruling Sovereign Council and de facto head of state.
Major General Nader Muhammad Babiker, the commander of the Presidential Guard Forces, told Radio Tamazuj Saturday afternoon that the Rapid Response Forces (RSF) commanded by the deputy head of the ruling Sovereign Council, Gen Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, ferociously attacked Al-Burhan’s residence among several other installations and that fighting was ongoing.
“In the mid-morning, the RSF massively attacked the home of the Commander-in-Chief, the SAF General Headquarters, and the Khartoum International Airport,” he said. “Fighting is still going on and the army is steadfast in defending the people and the country of Sudan.”
“The Commander-in-Chief is very alive and in a safe place momentarily,” Gen. Babikir added.
A reporter in Khartoum has said there is a large concentration of RSF troops near the Al-Manshiya Bridge near the army headquarter and SAF jetfighters were seen flying over Khartoum and doing sorties to bomb RSF strongholds.
Reports are also coming in that the fighting has now spread to other cities and towns including El-Fasher, Al-Obeid, and Meroe.
In a war of words that amounts to a blame game, the SAF and RSF have severally blamed each other for instigating the ongoing fighting.
“The Rapid Support Forces were surprised this morning, Saturday 15 April 2023 by a large force of the armed forces (SAF) entering the headquarters of the forces (RSF) in the Soba campgrounds in Khartoum,” the RSF statement read. “The SAF besieged our forces present there and then attacked them with a sweeping attack with all kinds of heavy and light weapons.”
However, SAF Spokesman Brigadier-General Nabil Abdallah countered by saying the RSF attacked military bases.
“Fighters from the RSF attacked several army camps in Khartoum and elsewhere around Sudan,” he said. “Clashes are ongoing and the army is carrying out its duty to safeguard the country.”
RSF said it was in control of the airports in the northern city of Merowe and El-Obeid in the south and that they had taken over the presidential palace in Khartoum.
Sudan’s General Intelligence Service however quickly denied the RSF was in control of the presidential palace.