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East Darfur villagers fear attacks after troops withdrawal

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July 29, 2016 (ED-DAEIN) - East Darfur returnees have expressed concern over government decision to withdraw military units from eight sites of voluntary return, expressing fear of attacks by armed gangs and herdsmen.

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A woman, irrigates, crops, Kabkabiya, camp, North Darfur (Public Domaine Images Photo)

A traditional leader, who requested anonymity, told Sudan Tribune that all military forces have been withdrawn from several areas without informing the Native Administration officials, pointing that poorly equipped police forces are assigned to protect civilians in these ares.

He stressed that displaced people who returned to their home villages to resume their agricultural activities are now annoyed by the decision to withdraw the military units.

The local leader said the areas affected by the troops redeployment are : Muhajerirya, Labdo, Kazan Gadid , Saliha , Sani Afindo , Kilekil Mogo and Kilekil Abu Salama.

He further said the majority of these villages is inhabited by civilians who voluntary returned, adding they fear armed militias and herdsmen attacks on their farms.

"The government needs to reconsider the withdrawal of military units to protect displaced people and secure the agricultural season," he said.

Darfur has been a flashpoint for lawlessness and violence since rebel movements took up arms against the Khartoum government in 2003.

The United Nations estimates as many as 300,000 people have been killed and almost 3 million people have been displaced during the ongoing conflict. According to the UN Human Rights Council, 400,000 people have been killed and 2.5 million displaced.

(ST)

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The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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