WAD MADANI: A strategic Nile bridge in Sudan’s capital has collapsed, the army and rival paramilitaries said in separate statements today, trading blame for its destruction nearly seven months into their devastating war.
Witnesses reported “clear signs of destruction on the Shambat Bridge” which crosses the White Nile and connecting Khartoum’s sister cities of Khartoum North and Omdurman.
Images posted online, which AFP was unable to immediately verify, showed a section of the bridge about halfway across the river had disappeared.
Vehicles, apparently damaged, lay on the part of the bridge still standing.
The army, led by Sudan’s de facto ruler Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, said in a statement that “the rebel militia destroyed the Shambat Bridge early this morning … adding a new crime to their record”.
The paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), led by Burhan’s former deputy Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, denied the accusation.
In a statement, the RSF charged that “the Burhan terrorist militia … destroyed the Shambat Bridge this morning, thinking that they could defeat our brave forces”.
In August, air strikes and artillery fire launched by army forces loyal to Burhan hit the Shambat Bridge.
Their paramilitary rivals had used the bridge as a supply route, a local resident and a military expert told AFP.