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Unknown gunmen kill peacekeeper in South Darfur

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A Nigerian peacekeeper plays a tuba trombone in a march to celebrate the Peacekeepers Day in El Fasher on May 29, 2017 (UNAMID Photo)

May 31, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - A Nigerian soldier of the African Union-United Nation Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) was shot dead by unknown gunmen in downtown Nyala, South Darfur state capital on Wednesday.

No official comment has been issued from the UNAMID on the incident.

However, an official source at the Mission told Sudan Tribune on the condition of anonymity, that gunmen shot at a Nigerian blue helmet while he was buying spare parts from the industrial zone in downtown Nyala.

According to the source, the Nigerian soldier sustained serious injuries and died later at Nyala Hospital.

He added the gunmen shot at the soldier despite his surrender, saying they stole his vehicle and fled to an unknown destination.

He said the incident was likely meant to press the Mission to exit Darfur region.
Meanwhile, eyewitnesses said that three gunmen threatened the Nigerian soldier at around 2 pm (local time) and forced him to leave the car before shooting him.

UNAMID death toll since the creation of the hybrid peacekeeping has risen to 64 after Wednesday’s incident.

Last June, the UN Security Council (UNSC) extended the mandate of the mission until 30 June 2017, stressing that the situation in the western Sudan region continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security.

The hybrid mission has been deployed in Darfur since December 2007 with a mandate to stem violence against civilians in the western Sudan’s region.

It is the world’s second largest international peacekeeping force with an annual budget of $1.35 billion and almost 20,000 troops.

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The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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