Ukrainian drones likely attacked Wagner-backed paramilitary forces in Sudan, CNN reported Tuesday, citing anonymous Ukrainian and Sudanese military sources as well as footage of the aerial strikes.
Videos shared by CNN show 14 separate drone attacks on the stronghold of Sudan’s paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) in the city of Omdurman, located across the Nile River from the Sudanese capital of Khartoum.
Russia’s Wagner mercenary outfit was reported to have backed RSF with arms supplies after its leader, former army deputy chief Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, fell out with Sudan's army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan this spring following a military coup last year.
A high-level military Sudanese source told CNN that an estimated 90% of RSF's weapons were supplied by Wagner. The anonymous source added that the death of Yevgeny Prigozhin in August has not brought an end to the supply of arms.
Drone strikes shown in videos obtained by CNN targeted RSF weapons and equipment believed to be provided by the private military outfit.
Ukrainian text is seen on at least one drone controller that appeared to direct the strikes, while experts cited by the outlet said the use of commercially available drones to directly attack targets is common in Ukraine and had not been previously witnessed in Sudan.
“Ukrainian special services were likely responsible [for the strikes],” an anonymous Ukrainian military source told CNN.
However, the Sudanese military source cast doubt on the allegations of a Ukrainian operation in Sudan.
At the same time, Kyiv has not claimed responsibility for the series of attacks and CNN was unable to independently confirm Ukraine’s involvement.
Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said last month that Kyiv was seeking to “free Africa from Russia’s grip.”