UN warns of collapse as Sudan fighting enters third week
The United Nations belies that the situation in Sudan will see the country collapsing as violence enters its third week between the country's warring factions.
Warplanes on bombing flights received intense anti-aircraft fire above Khartoum on Saturday, as the conflict between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) reached its third week, breaching a recently restored truce.
Since April 15, battles have erupted between army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan's forces and his number two, RSF commander Mohamed Hamdan Daglo (Hemedti).
While the number of dead civilians keeps rising and chaos and lawlessness engulf Khartoum, a city of five million people where many have been confined to their homes without food, water, or electricity, they have repeatedly agreed to ceasefires that have failed to yield many results.
To escape the fighting, tens of thousands of people have been displaced from their homes in Sudan or have made difficult journeys to neighboring Chad, Egypt, South Sudan, and Ethiopia.
"There is no right to go on fighting for power when the country is falling apart," UN chief Antonio Guterres the Al Arabiya television.
Al-Burhan and Dagalo have agreed to multiple fragile truces since the start of the fighting, with each side blaming the other for violating them.
The United States, Saudi Arabia, the African Union, and the United Nations mediated the agreement to the most recent three-day truce, which will end at midnight on Sunday.
Guterres voiced his support for the African-led mediation efforts. "My appeal is for everything to be done to support an African-led initiative for peace in Sudan," he told Al Arabiya.
Meanwhile, the Pentagon said it had "deployed US intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance assets to support air and land evacuation routes which Americans are using."
Britain said it was ending its evacuation flights, after airlifting more than 1,500 people this week.
The World Food Programme has warned that the clashes could plunge millions more into hunger in a country where 15 million people --one-third of the population - already need aid to stave off famine.
The unstable security situation in Sudan is slowly taking its toll on the economy: especially in regard to food products, according to a report by The Guardian.
Locals have forsaken their day-to-day jobs out of fear of getting caught in the cross-fire. The Guardian correspondent reports that Omdurman's open-air market, which used to be an economic hub for the exchange of goods, has had half of its stalls closed.
Ever since the violence broke out, causing fuel stations to close down, fuel prices have spiked impacting by extension the prices of all other commodities.
Sudan's armed forces agreed to extend the ceasefire, which was proposed for an additional 72 hours, to take effect from the expiry date of the current truce.
On the last day of the fourth ceasefire, clashes erupted at several points in Khartoum and plumes of smoke rose in the vicinity of the presidential palace in Khartoum, coinciding with the overflight of warplanes.
As battles intensified on the ground, the two rival generals took aim at each other in the media, with Al-Burhan identifying the RSF as a militia that aims "to destroy Sudan" in an interview for US-based TV channel Al-hurra.
He also added "mercenaries" were pouring over the border from Chad, Central African Republic, and Niger to fuel the chaos.
In response, Dagalo slammed the army chief in an interview for the BBC, saying he was "not trustworthy" and a "traitor".
According to the UN, around 75,000 people have been internally displaced as a result of the fighting in Khartoum, the states of Blue Nile and North Kordofan, as well as the western area of Darfur.