Video footage appears to show Ukrainian special forces ‘cleaning up’ Wagner Group troops in Sudan, ambushing the mercenaries with RPGs in shocking urban warfare.

Grainy infrared footage shot from above shows Ukrainian soldiers in a dense unnamed area in Sudan ‘within the last two weeks’, according to the Kyiv Post.

The clip shows the unit moving to surround a compound and alleged hostile mercenaries highlighted with red squares. 

From one view, multiple targets are seen moving around in a building, apparently unaware of the approaching operatives. An explosion suddenly rocks the building, which erupts with a huge plume of smoke. 

A Ukrainian soldier is seen firing a hand-held RPG towards the window of the building.

A source in Ukraine’s security and defense sector told the Kyiv Post that Ukrainian special forces are currently working in Sudan to ‘clean up’ Wagner PMC, as well ‘their local terrorists and the Russian Federation’s special services’.

They said: ‘The footage probably shows the work of special units of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine.’

A source told the Kyiv Post the video 'probably shows the work' of elite Ukrainian operatives

A source told the Kyiv Post the video ‘probably shows the work’ of elite Ukrainian operatives

Targets, highlighted with a red square, are seen moving around through a window

Targets, highlighted with a red square, are seen moving around through a window

The window then erupts with smoke, apparently after being hit with an RPG

The window then erupts with smoke, apparently after being hit with an RPG

The clip, lasting a little over two minutes, shows the Ukrainian troops stacking up outside of the compound ostensibly used by Wagner Group mercenaries.

From other angles, cameras show a group of individuals moving around inside a building from a window.

The building is suddenly cloaked in smoke after an apparent Ukrainian attack.

Without infrared imaging, the building is shown lit up against a backdrop of darkness as the RPG hits.

Slowed down, the footage shows a projectile headed directly for the window.

Individuals, again marked with a red square, are then seen quickly fleeing the scene onto the city streets.

Thermal imaging shows the trail of the RPG launched towards the building before exploding in bright yellows and whites.

A second video obtained by the Ukrainian outlet appeared to show the scene from an aircraft some 200-400 metres above ground. 

In September, an anonymous source told CNN a string of drone attacks against the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) were carried out by a ‘non-Sudanese’ military, claiming ‘Ukrainian special services were likely responsible’.

The attacks began on September 8, two days after Wagner Group sent gun-laden trucks to an RSF garrison in al-Zurug, southwest Sudan. 

The RSF has been embroiled in a power struggle with Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) since April 15, 2023.

At least six strikes targeted trucks on Shambat Bridge and another eight hit vehicles, buildings and personnel near RSF positions in Omdurman and Ombada. 

Analysis of drone footage by CNN revealed Ukrainian text seen on the drone controller.

Whistleblowers in Chad told CNN that the Wagner convoy moved through Chad, where Wagner Group does not currently have an established presence, potentially signalling an expansion of Russia and Wagner’s influence on the continent. 

Ukraine did not take responsibility for the ambush. 

Wagner Group has maintained a presence in Sudan since 2017, and has arms spread out across the continent. 

In April, the late founder Yevgeny Prigozhin claimed ‘not a single Wagner PMC [private military company] fighter has been present in Sudan’ for over two years.

But evidence has mounted of Wagner arming the RSF with missiles to fuel its war against the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF). 

Footage from July 2022 also appeared to show mercenaries training Sudanese forces in parachute-landing exercises. 

The Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime [GI-TOC] assessed in April that Wagner sought both influence and material gain in Sudan.

‘The main objective of the Russians in Sudan is not to protect the Khartoum political power, but essentially to benefit immensely from the country’s mineral resources.’ 

Russia has likewise agreed trade deals in the past to mine gold in Sudan.

From another view, smoke billows from the building after a direct hit

From another view, smoke billows from the building after a direct hit

Troops were seen at the undisclosed location stacking up near a compound

Troops were seen at the undisclosed location stacking up near a compound

Wagner PMC mercenaries have played a key role in Putin's devastating invasion of Ukraine - and have influence in Africa

Wagner PMC mercenaries have played a key role in Putin’s devastating invasion of Ukraine – and have influence in Africa

PMC Wagner Group has a presence spread out across Russian-influenced African nations

PMC Wagner Group has a presence spread out across Russian-influenced African nations

In December 2022, civilian groups that had been sidelined by a 2021 coup signed an initial deal with the military to start a new two-year political transition and appoint a new civilian government.

On 5 April 2023, the final signing for the deal was delayed a second time, amid disputes over whether the army would be placed under civilian oversight in a new administration, and how the RSF would be integrated into the armed forces. 

In this volatile environment, the relationship between de facto President Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and his deputy, RSF military leader Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, better known as Hemeti, became strained, leading ultimately to conflict as RSF personnel were tactically redeployed into roles around Sudan. 

Both sides initially accused each other of starting the conflict in April 2023, and have been loathe to negotiate. Both have called for the other side to surrender.

The region remains geopolitically important and western allies fear the possible establishment of a Russian base on the east coast on the Red Sea, to which some military leaders have been receptive. 

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