40 civilians killed in airstrike on Khartoum market; Sudanese army denies involvement

Sudanese citizens demonstrate in Khartoum, Sudan. (Xinhua/Mohamed Khidir/IANS)

Khartoum, Sep 11 (IANS) At least 40 civilians were killed and dozens injured in an airstrike “carried out by the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF)” on a market in southern Khartoum, a volunteer group has said. However, the SAF has denied responsibility for the attack.

The resistance committee of South Khartoum said in a statement on Sunday that “40 civilians were killed in an air strike by the SAF warplanes on a market in Mayo area, south of Khartoum”, Xinhua news agency reported.

The committee also published photos showing large numbers of injured and corpses covered with cloths.

On the same day, the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) also accused the SAF of shelling civilian neighbourhoods in the Mayo area.

“The SAF carried out aerial bombardments this morning on residents in Mayo neighbourhood,” the RSF said in a statement, adding dozens of injuries were transferred to the nearby hospital.

The SAF, however, rejected the rebel militia’s claims as misleading and false, saying it had never targeted any civilian gatherings, according to a statement by its spokesman’s office.

“The armed forces confirm that they only launch their strikes against rebel gatherings, crowds, sites and bases as legitimate military targets, while fully adhering to international humanitarian law and the rules of engagement as a professional army, far from innocent citizens,” said the statement.

Sudan has been witnessing deadly clashes between the SAF and the RSF in Khartoum and other areas since April 15, which have left at least 3,000 deaths and more than 6,000 injuries, according to the Sudanese Health Ministry.

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