November 9, 2016 (NYALA) - Ten people were killed and fifteen others injured on Wednesday in a retaliatory attack by armed cattle herders in Goghana area at the locality of Graida, 86 km. south of Nyala, South Darfur state capital.
On Tuesday, five people were killed and several others wounded in violent attacks between cattle herders and farmers in Goghana area prompting Wednesday’s retaliatory attack.
Member of South Darfur’s legislative council from Graida constituency Omer Mohamed Ibrahim told Sudan Tribune that armed herders attacked the villages of Dahab Sharo, Myola, Kafla and Roina at Goghana administrative unit in Graida locality.
“Gunmen from the herders’ militias riding on four-wheel vehicles, horses and camel backs have carried out a barbaric attack against villages of voluntary return in the area killing 10 residents and injuring others” he said.
“Some residents sustained serious injuries and were rushed to Graida hospital for treatment,” he added.
He pointed that large numbers of IDPs have returned to the camps following the attack which led to the burning of four voluntary return villages, adding the herders destroyed and looted the farms following the attack.
Clashes between farmers and pastoralists in the past led to furious tribal clashes and dozens of people were killed and massive displacement occurred after burning down villages.
It is noteworthy that large numbers of IDPs refuse to return to the original villages, demanding protection against the Arab cattle herders who are allied with the government.
To fight a rebellion that erupted in 2003 in Darfur, the Sudanese government armed the Arab tribes, mainly pastoralists, to fight insurgents from the African tribes, who are farmers.
The two groups have often conflict over water and land in the arid region.
Ibrahim said the security situation has significantly deteriorated following the attack, pointing to inability of the limited military force in the area to maintain security and impose the rule of law.
He called upon South Darfur government to take immediate measures to stop the lawlessness situation in the area, pointing out that the residents, particularly women and children are living in dire humanitarian conditions.
The MP further said the repeated attacks against the voluntary return villages have posed a real challenge to the federal government, demanding the latter to assume its responsibility and deal with the issue as a top priority.
For his part, Haroun Abdalla, local administrative chief told Sudan Tribune on Tuesday that farmers in Goghana area accused cattle herders of trespassing on their farms, pointing that clashes erupted between the two groups killing 2 farmers and 3 herders and injuring others from both sides.
South Darfur State and its capital Nyala, the largest town in the region, have been witnessing a state of security breakdown in recent years.
Since July 2014, the governor of South Darfur Adam Mahmoud Jar al-Nabi, declared an indefinite emergency situation in the state, including a curfew from 07:00 pm to 07:00 am (local time) in Nyala.
The decision also banned riding of motorcycles by more than one person, holding weapons while wearing civilian clothes, vehicles driving around without license plates, and wearing of Kadamool (a turban which covers the face).