September 1, 2013 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese president, Omer Hassan Al-Bashir, has directed the governor of East Darfur state, Abdel-Hamid Musa Kasha, to do everything possible to prevent the recurrence of tribal clashes in his state and maintain the social fabric and unity among various ethnic groups.
More than 100 people were killed last month when clashes between the Rizeigat and the Maalia tribes broke out in the Kilaikil area located north of the state capital, El Daein, which both groups claim as part of their territory. The Rezeigat are accused of seeking to take the control of a land inhabited by the Maalia.
The Maalia also accuse Kasha, who is a member of the rival Rizeigat tribe, of siding with the Rizeigat and supplying them with government vehicles and weapons.
Kasha said in press statements following his meeting with Bashir on Sudany that he briefed the president on the recent clashes between Rizeigat and Maalia tribes and the official and popular efforts being made to contain them.
On August 22, both tribes signed an agreement committing them to stop fighting and to resolve their difference peacefully.
According to the deal, brokered by North Darfur governor, the Sudanese government will deploy national security forces from outside region to avoid the presence of Rezeigat elements among them in all the areas where the two tribes clashed.
The parties also agreed to prepare for a reconciliation conference to be chaired by committee from the national government.
Kasha added that those "unfortunate events took them by surprise" and said that his new-born state was the most stable and secure state in Darfur, stressing that tribal clashes would only hinder development and tear the social fabric in the region.
He was quoted upon his arrival in Khartoum on Saturday as saying that clashes were "orchestrated by invisible hands" in order to hamper his development efforts and destabilize the state.
"We demanded the Darfur crimes tribunal to investigate those events and bring perpetrators of the grave crimes and those who stand behind them to justice", he said.
Kasha also met with defence minister, Abdel Rahim Mohamed Hussein, and discussed the ways in which Sudanese army could support the peace deal between the two tribes and strengthen peace and coexistence among all ethnic groups in the state.
Hussein stressed that the army will secure the area and protects the residents, adding that they are ready to send all necessary military enforcements.
Kasha, for his part, expressed thanks to the military committee which was formed by the defence minister for deploying the necessary troops to protect and secure the state.
Tribal fighting has become the major source of insecurity in Darfur since the beginning of the year, forcing over 300,000 people to flee their homes.
Last June, Bashir warned against tribal strife in some areas of the country, noting that Sudan is facing challenges that need cooperation of all its people.
“The tribal conflicts in a number of Sudan’s areas constitute the biggest threat to the country," Bashir said when addressing a meeting of the Shura (consultative) Council of the ruling National Congress Party (NCP).
Different officials in Darfur including the head of the regional authority, Tijani El-Sissi, also said that tribal violence is among the biggest threats to ongoing efforts to implement a peace document signed by two former rebel groups in the region.