White House confirms death of second American in Sudan

A second American has died in Sudan, the White House said on Wednesday, and US authorities are helping a small number of citizens seeking to leave the country during a ceasefire that has curbed fighting.

While sporadic violence continues, the ceasefire announced by the United States on Monday appears to be holding, White House national security spokesman John Kirby said.

"So we want to take advantage of that ceasefire to make sure that Americans know if they want to make the move ... we're gonna see what we can do to get them the information they need to link up with these ground routes," he said on CNN.

"It is still dangerous. I want to stress that. It is still dangerous, but the ceasefire seems to be holding or at least contributing to a reduction in violence."

The Biden administration was continuing to work with both the Sudanese army and the paramilitary force opposing it to extend the ceasefire to allow more humanitarian assistance, Kirby told reporters in a briefing earlier Wednesday.

The White House's comments came as fighting between Sudan's army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) flared on the outskirts of the capital of Khartoum despite the truce aimed at quelling the 11-day conflict.

Levels of violence appear to have decreased significantly, Kirby said. "The levels are down, but we want to see the levels at zero," he said.

President Joe Biden has directed US officials to help as many Americans as possible, and they were "actively facilitating the departure of a relatively small number of Americans" who wanted to leave.

US officials have put that number in the dozens.

Some US citizens had arrived at Port Sudan to evacuate, and the United States was continuing to support other limited evacuation efforts via ground routes, he added.

USAID has deployed teams in the region and was prepared to help provide humanitarian assistance in the event the ceasefire was extended, Kirby told reporters.

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