Fighting in Sudan has intensified as warring factions seek to secure strategic locations, as pressure grows from international powers to end hostilities and allow humanitarian assistance to reach millions of desperate civilians.
Witnesses reported artillery fire around the state television building in the capital’s sister city of Omdurman, just across the Nile.
For nearly seven weeks, deadly fighting between the regular army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces has gripped Khartoum and the flashpoint western region of Darfur despite repeated efforts to broker a humanitarian ceasefire.
The army announced it had brought reinforcements to the capital from other parts of Sudan to participate in “operations in the Khartoum area”.
Sudan analyst Kholood Khair said the army was “expected to launch a massive offensive” to clear the paramilitaries from the streets of Khartoum.
Washington slapped sanctions on the warring parties on Thursday, holding them both responsible for provoking “appalling” bloodshed.
The U.S Treasury placed two major arms companies of the Sudanese Armed Forces, Defence Industries System and Sudan Master Technology, on its blacklist.
In parallel, it placed sanctions on gold miner Al Junaid Multi Activities Co and arms trader Tradive General Trading, two companies controlled by RSF Mohamed Hamdan Daglo and his family.
The State Department meanwhile imposed visa restrictions on both army and RSF officials, saying they were complicit in “undermining Sudan’s democratic transition.” It did not provide their names.