A fighter jet was shot down in Khartoum on Tuesday, where clashes and artillery fire targeted several neighborhoods in Sudan’s war-torn capital, witnesses said.
“We saw pilots parachuting as the plane dived towards the ground ,” said a witness in northern Khartoum. A source within the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (FSR) told AFP that the FSR had shot down the army plane.
The FSR said they had “arrested the pilot after he landed” in a statement, also accusing the army of “heinous massacres” in the Khartoum region.
The Sudanese army, led by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhane , has been at war since April 15 with the paramilitaries of the FSR led by its former number two, General Mohamed Hamdane Daglo .
The conflict has killed nearly 3,000 people, according to the NGO Acled, and 2.8 million displaced persons and refugees, according to the UN. A resident of Omdurman, in the northern suburbs of the capital, reported on Tuesday “violent clashes using various types of weapons”.
Other witnesses said they observed “airstrikes (near) the state television building”, which the RSF launched an attack on this week and used anti-aircraft missiles on Tuesday.
In the east of the capital, residents also reported clashes with machine guns.
The army also “launched rockets and heavy artillery” at RSF bases in the centre and north of the capital, a witness said. Homes were damaged and civilians were rushed to one of the few hospitals still operational, another added.
In Khartoum and the western Darfur region, the fighting mainly affected densely populated neighborhoods. The streets are littered with dead bodies and houses have been targeted by missiles, witnesses said.
Trapped by the fighting, civilians have had to ration water, food, electricity and medicine for almost three months.