Sudan negotiations continue despite intense fighting


The warring army and paramilitary Rapid Support Forces will resume discussions on Sunday, according to a senior Saudi diplomat, despite air strikes and ferocious battle continuing overnight near Khartoum despite an agreement to protect civilians.

The Saudis, who have been negotiating a truce, have allegedly invited army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan to the Arab League gathering in Jeddah on Friday.

Since the violence erupted abruptly a month ago, hundreds have been killed and almost 700,000 have been displaced. Over 200,000 people have fled to neighboring countries, and the turmoil risks attracting other forces and destabilizing the region.

Burhan was not expected to leave Sudan for the Jeddah summit, according to two other officials in the Gulf.

Burhan was invited, according to the Saudi ambassador, because he is the chairman of the Sudanese Sovereign Council, which was intended to oversee a transition to civilian governance until the violence erupted.

The RSF’s chairman and his opponent, Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, is the council’s deputy head and goes by the moniker “Hemedti.”

“We haven’t yet received the names of the delegation,” a Saudi official said, “but we are expecting Sudan to be represented at the summit.”

Despite a “declaration of principles” issued on Thursday to protect civilians and allow humanitarian access, fighting in Khartoum and adjacent areas has persisted.

Plans for humanitarian delivery, safe corridors, and military withdrawal from civilian areas are all on the table for the continuation of talks in Jeddah, where the parties will first address how to carry out the agreement struck on Thursday.

The sides would then talk about terminating the battle and forming a civilian government. The nature of the argument influences the discussion. According to the Saudi official, he has experienced nothing but kindness from all sides.

Both sides have made no public concessions and have continued to combat despite short ceasefires. The army has yet to reply to the RSF’s pledge to uphold the Thursday agreement.

The RSF has entrenched into civilian districts around the city, and the army can utilize air power, so either side is unlikely to win fast.


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