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Sudan's army says it retook national broadcast building in Omdurman

Capture of crucial site marks turnaround in fortunes for Sudanense Armed Forces over last month
Army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan (C) walks among other army members during a tour of a neighbourhood in Port Sudan on 31 August 2023 (Sudanese Army/AFP)

The Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) have claimed control of the national broadcast building in the city of Ondurman from their rival Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

The paramilitary RSF captured the site in the first days of the war almost a year ago.

The RSF's loss of the important piece of national infrastructure is the latest in a string of victories claimed by the army.

Footage posted by the army showed some of its troops within a kilometre of the radio and TV building cheering after seizing vehicles and weapons.

Middle East Eye could not independently verify the footage. 

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Since late January, the SAF had been concentrating its efforts in Omdurman and Bahri, cities that lie across the White Nile and Blue Nile rivers from the capital Khartoum.

The previous months had seen a string of devastating defeats for the military.

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Out of all the strategic cities of Darfur, Sudan’s restive and sprawling western region, only El-Fasher remained in SAF hands by early November.

Sudanese who have observed the fighting from the ground suggested to MEE that drones recently acquired from Iran have helped tilt the balance against the RSF, which controls most of the country.

The Mohajer-6 combat drones, which have sophisticated air-to-ground attack capabilities and have been seen in Iraq and Ukraine, have been used widely on the Sudanese battlefield, the sources said.

The war in Sudan between the RSF, led by General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo (known as Hemeti) and the SAF, led by General Abdul Fattah al-Burhan, began on 15 April last year.

It has led to more than 12,000 people killed and 10.7 million displaced, according to the International Organisation of Migration, the highest number in any conflict this century.

The fighting has left 25 million Sudanese suffering from hunger or malnutrition. Children are dying of starvation across the country as the warring parties continue to vie for control. 

Aid organisation Medicins Sans Frontieres (MSF) has estimated that in Zamzam, a camp in North Darfur, one child is dying every two hours and around 13 are dying every day. 

“What we are seeing in Zamzam camp is an absolutely catastrophic situation. We estimate that at least one child is dying every two hours in the camp,” said Claire Nicolet, head of MSF’s emergency response in Sudan, last month.

There have been numerous accounts of torture and sexual violence, particularly on the part of the RSF in Darfur.

Local sources have alleged that dozens of women have been raped or abducted by RSF fighters or criminal gangs, which have spread across el-Gezira state since the beginning of February.

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