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New wave of displacement reported in North Darfur

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Thousands of people, mostly women and children, take refuge at a safe zone adjacent to UNAMID's base in Um Baru, North Darfur, on 27 January 2015 (UNAMID Photo)

May 30, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - The recent clashes between government forces and rebels in Kutum Locality, North Darfur State has led to a new wave of displacement in the villages around Ain Siro Mountains range.

The Sudanese army and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) militiamen clashed during four days from May 19 to 22 with the Sudan Liberation Movement-Minni Minnawi (SLM-MM) and the SLM- Transitional Council (SLM-TC) in East and North Darfur.

Sulieman Adam, a camp leader at Kasab IDP’s camp Tuesday told Sudan Tribune that the residents of Ain Siro and north-west Kutum Mountain range went up to the mountains surrounding their areas for fear of killing, saying they did not reach the Kasab camp.

He added the recent clashes at Ain Siro caused displacement of large numbers of residents, pointing that significant numbers of villagers are left without shelter.

For his part, Ali Adam al-Tahir, a resident of Ain Siro, said some RSF elements led by commander Mohamadein Arku Glu have attacked the area, saying thousands of civilians fled towards the mountains.

He pointed that the villagers are going through difficult conditions, saying some of them have arrived at the Kula mountains, Diri, Adri and Matarg areas.

According to al-Tahir, residents of the Mustariha area, 17 km. east of Ain Siro including from Tunono, Tujo, Kola and Diry areas have also been displaced.

During his meeting with a delegation from the hybrid mission (UNAMID) earlier this week, Governor of North Darfur Abdel-Wahid Youssef denied the recent clashes have caused new displacements, saying the battles occurred far from population centres and didn’t harm the residents.

The Sudanese government didn’t officially announce any new wave of displacement resulting from the Ain Siro clashes despite the various reports which confirm the matter.

The Sudanese army has been fighting a group of armed movements in Darfur since 2003. UN agencies estimate that over 300,000 people were killed in the conflict, and over 2.5 million were displaced.

(ST)

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