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Gunmen attack Darfur civilians, UNAMID says

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March 24, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) said unidentified gunmen attacked a camp for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in South Darfur and a number of villages in North Darfur states forcing some 3,000 civilians to seek protection at its bases.

"In Khor Abeche, on 22 March, about 300 heavily armed men attacked [a] camp, [for IDPs] setting fire to dozens of shelters and stealing livestock belonging to the residents. As a result of the incident, at least 2,000 IDPs sought refuge at the UNAMID base. One IDP was reportedly killed," said the hybrid mission in a statement released on Monday.

On the same Saturday "hundreds of families approached UNAMID’s base in Korma and advised that Kobe town (approximately 21km north of the base) and neighbouring villages, had been attacked by armed men on 21 March", the statement said adding one person reportedly killed.

UNMAID further indicated that around 1,000 IDPs are now gathered around its base in Korma.

The government has mobilised its militias, including its Rapid Support Forces (RSF) or Janjaweed, which are accused of committing attacks against civilians during the ongoing anti-rebel campaign in North and South Darfur states.

UK-based charity group SUDO-UK reported last Sunday that the RSF militiamen on the orders of vice-president Hasabo Mohamed Abdel Rahman who supervised the military campaign attacked and burnt several villages in the eastern part of Jebel Mara in North Darfur.

"As a result [of an attack on 21 March] three children, a women and five men were killed in Deby Nayra, Dally and Nimrra villages," the group said.

The militiamen, on the day after, killed two villagers meanwhile two others were abducted in the same area.

"On the same day 22 March, the (RSF) looted around 1000 cattle that belong to Adam Abdallah Haroun from Leyia village in the east of Jebel Marra, South Darfur," it added.

However, the head of the militia group, Gen. Mohamed Hamdan, on Monday denied the accusations saying that the RSF men who are under the command of the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) are there to protect the country and the civilians and vowed to inflect more defeats on the rebel groups.

(ST)

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