A sudanese woman who fled the conflict in Sudan's Darfur region
A sudanese woman who fled the conflict in Sudan's Darfur region, carries a child as she walks past makeshift shelters near the border between Sudan and Chad, while taking refuge in Borota, Chad, on May 13, 2023. Image Credit: REUTERS

Khartoum: Air strikes pummelled Khartoum on Saturday, with representatives of Sudan’s warring factions meeting in Saudi Arabia for talks to prevent a “humanitarian catastrophe” as the fighting entered a fifth week.

A witness in west Khartoum reported army air strikes on paramilitary forces, as brutal urban warfare continued in Sudan’s densely-populated capital.

More than 750 people have been killed and hundreds of thousands displaced since fighting erupted on April 15 between army chief Abdel Fattah Al Burhan and his deputy turned rival Mohammad Hamdan Daglo, who commands the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces.

Representatives of both generals have been in the Saudi city of Jeddah for a week, for talks intended “to protect Sudan from any escalation that will lead to a humanitarian catastrophe”, a Saudi diplomat said on condition of anonymity.

Envoys in Jeddah agreed on Thursday to “affirm our commitment to ensure that civilians are protected”.

However the deal, dubbed the Jeddah Declaration, did not amount to a truce and the situation on the ground appeared unchanged as battles raged on.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres expressed hopes the Jeddah deal would “ensure that the relief operation can scale up swiftly and safely to meet the needs of millions of people in Sudan”.