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UN expert inquires about alleged violations of Sudan’s RSF militia

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June 19, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The UN Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Sudan, Mashood Baderin tabled a series of inquiries on reports pointing to allegations committed by the Rapid Support Forces (RSF).

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RSF forces stand around a damaged vehicle after recapturing the Daldako area, east of Kadugli on 20 May 2014 (Photo: Reuters/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah)

Baderin arrived in North Darfur state capital of El-Fasher on Thursday, kicking off his tour in the state as part of his efforts to get acquainted with the human rights situation in Sudan before submitting his report to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) next September.

He met with North Darfur deputy governor, Abu al-Abbas Gedo who stressed to him the national role played by the RSF against rebel groups which attacked several localities in February and March of this year.

Gedo blamed some of the abuses committed on the rebel groups and other outlaws.

The RSF militia, which is widely known as the Janjaweed militias, were originally mobilized by the Sudanese government to quell the insurgency that broke out in Sudan’s western region of Darfur in 2003.

The militia was activated and restructured again in August last year under the command of NISS to fight rebel groups in Darfur region, South Kordofan and Blue Nile states following joint attacks by Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) rebels in North and South Kordofan in April 2013.

Earlier this year, the presence of Janjaweed militias incorporated in RSF in North Kordofan state capital of El-Obeid drew widespread condemnation from residents who accused it of spreading terror.

These forces were blamed at the time for looting commercial markets and killing of a merchant in El-Obeid leading to massive protests across the city.

The governor of North Kordofan state, Ahmed Haroun, announced afterwards that his government made the necessary arrangements to drive them out from the state within 72 hours.

But the RSF denied any wrongdoing.

Sudanese authorities arrested leaders of two opposition parties recently after accusing the RSF of committing serious abuses in conflict zones.

On Wednesday, the RSF commander Maj. Gen. Abbas Abdulaziz disclosed that 300 of his forces were tried over unspecified abuses and crimes.

(ST)

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