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Sudan’s vice president mobilising Darfur tribal militias: JEM

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March 31, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – Sudan’s rebel Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) has accused second vice-president Hassabo Mohamed Abdel-Rahman of leading a campaign to arm Darfur tribes and described him as “warlord”.

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Arab militiamen, known as Janjaweed, have been blamed for killings, widespread rape and abductions during the 11-year conflict in Darfur (FILE)

JEM’s secretary of social affairs, Babiker Abakr Hassan Hamadain, said in a press release on Monday that Khartoum continues to mobilise Darfur tribes on a social basis besides targeting certain ethnicities on the same basis.

He pointed to the grave crimes committed by government militias led by Mohamed Hamadan Dalgo in southeast of South Darfur state capital of Nyala and north of the North Darfur state capital of El-Fashir, saying Hassabo was appointed as vice-president in order to become the official sponsor of tribal militias.

Hamadain disclosed that Hassabo’s militias committed heinous crimes including mass killings, looting, and burning of villages, saying a rational regime would neither recruit militias on tribal bases nor adopt a racial combat doctrine.

He added that the scale of destruction which those militias committed against civilians stemmed from this racial doctrine which allows them to kill and loot, stressing that Sudan won’t witness stability as long as the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) is holding power.

The tribal militias known as Janjaweed were originally mobilised by the Sudanese government to quell the insurgency that broke out in Sudan’s western region of Darfur in 2003.

The counter-insurgency campaign, which mainly targeted African ethnic groups on account of their affiliation to the insurgents, has led to the death of approximately 300,000 people and the displacement of more than 2.7 million, according to UN figures.

(ST)

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