Sudan rebels take credit for Sunday army plane crash

By Mohamed Elkhatem

KHARTOUM (AA) – A Sudanese rebel group announced Sunday that it was responsible for downing a military plane that crashed while landing one day earlier due to what the army said was a “technical malfunction”.

The opposition Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) said in a Sunday statement that artillery fired by its fighters had struck an Antonov army plane “that was bombing civilians and destroying civilian infrastructure in areas we control in South Kurdufan”.

The rebel group went on to assert that the pilot had been unable to save the plane despite an attempted emergency landing at El-Obeid Airport in Sudan’s North Kurdufan province.

On Saturday evening, the Sudanese army announced that three high-ranking officers and two mid-ranking officers had been killed in the crash, which it attributed to a “technical error”.

The Sudanese army has been at war with the SLM since 2011.