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Sudanese forces kill 9 civilians in Central Darfur

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Security forces in the capital of south Darfur State Nyala on 5 July 2016 (ST Photo)

January 1, 2017 (ZALINGEI) Sudanese government forces in Nertiti, Central Darfur State, killed at least nine civilians on Sunday with guns in an apparent revenge attack for the murder of a soldier, a local activist said.

Abdallah Saleh al-Shafie humanitarian official of displaced persons and refugees association told Sudan Tribune that the government forces in Nertiti launched an indiscriminate attack on the civilians using heavy and light weapons after a soldier was found dead in the area.

Al-Shafie confirmed that nine people were killed and 60 wounded, some of them are seriously hurt. He added that government troops looted civilian property and broke into shops in Nertiti-North and Nertiti-South markets.

He said the body of the murdered soldier was found lying in the street, stressing that the offender was not identified.

The humanitarian official said dozens of wounded civilians are treated at the UNAMID hospital as Nertiti hospital was unable to receive them.

Further the government forces arrested 15 people during the "barbaric and savage," attack, as he said, while others fled the area and sought protection in the area just outside the UNAMID site.

The Central Darfur State security committee visited the area of the attack and held a meeting that lasted for several hours during the night.

Following the meeting a local official told Sudan Tribune that ’’the situation has returned to calm’’.

The government officials claim rebel elements that fled from Jebel Marra battles are now sheltered in IDPs camps and neighbourhoods of Nertiti.

REBELS CONDEMN

The Sudan Liberation Movement- Minni Minnawi (SLM-MM) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) condemned "Nirtiti massacre" and called on the international community to stop the targeting of civilians in Darfur.

"The Sudan Liberation Movement condemns this deliberate attack carried out under direct order of the president of Salvation regime who is wanted for justice and the director of security apparatus. This attack is an evidence to prove the regime’s lack of seriousness to achieve peace in Sudan," said the SLM-MM spokesperson Mohamed Hassan Haroun.

He further said the group does not acknowledge the recent extension of unilateral cessation of hostilities for one month by the Sudanese president.

The SLM reiterates its rejection to sign any cessation of hostilities or ceasefire agreement unless the regime stops the repeated attacks and unless al-Bashir stops instructing these militias which he directs personally, further said the rebel group.

In a statement released to condemn the attack, the SPLM-N Secretary General Yasir Arman said the regime is committing a war crime to celebrate the New Year.

"The SPLM-N calls on the Sudanese public to stand against genocide and war crimes and it appeals to the United Nations Security Council, the United States, and the European Union to take measures against General Bashir," said Arman.

The SPLM-secretary general further said that this attack reminds "all of the international stakeholders of the need for civilian protection in Sudan rather than rewarding General Bashir and casting a blind eye on his war crimes".

(ST)

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The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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