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Unknown gunmen kill army soldier in South Darfur

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December 29, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – A Sudanese soldier was killed by unidentified gunmen on Sunday after he was kidnapped from his home in a neighborhood east of South Darfur capital, Nyala.

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A Sudanese military tank is stationed near a security facility in South Darfur capital Nyala on 4 July 2013 (Photo: Getty Images)

Eyewitnesses told Sudan Tribune that a group of armed men in two Land Cruiser vehicles kidnapped an army sergeant from his house in al-Fann’ia neighborhood adding that his body was later found dumped in the valley of Berley in central Nyala.

According to the medical report, the death was caused by spinal cord separation due to broken neck.

The same witnesses said the gunmen handcuffed the victim and took him blindfolded towards Berley valley, expressing fears about the growing state of lawlessness in Nyala.

But the deputy police chief, Osman Mansur, told Sudan Tribune the sergeant was killed in a brawl with another man, denying he was kidnapped.

On the other hand, the family of the victim affirmed he was killed following his abduction by the gunmen.

The killing of the army soldier comes less than 24 hours after a looting took place of the salaries of the employees of Al-Hadaf Security Services Company.

South Darfur state has witnessed a near total security breakdown in recent months with recurrent incidents of looting, banditry and murder including from pro-government militias.

Businessmen and commercial convoys in South Darfur are regularly attacked by armed gangs which demand ransom for their release.

Last July, governor Adam Mahmoud Jar al-Nabi, declared an indefinite emergency situation in South Darfur state, including a curfew from 7pm to 7am (local time) in the capital Nyala.

The decision also banned riding of motorcycles by more than one person, holding weapons while wearing plain clothes, vehicles driving around without license plates, and wearing a kadamool (turban which covers the face).

It also prohibited tinted glasses on cars in Nyala even for government officials unless permission is being obtained from the traffic police. The decision further prevented firing of gunshots in social events in Nyala.

A special tribunal has been set up to investigate crimes, with residents supplied with phone numbers to contact authorities to report crimes and other violations of the emergency laws.

In October, South Darfur state’s legislative council passed the community security act which banned use of the four-wheel drive vehicles and motorcycles inside the state.

The law criminalizes any person who drives a four-wheel-drive vehicle or motorcycle within the state boundaries.

(ST)

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The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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