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Central Darfur collects more than 3000 illegal arms: governor

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Photo taken on Sept. 23, 2017 shows weapons voluntarily surrendered by residents in South Darfur State, Sudan. (Xinhua Photo)
October 13, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - The governor of Central Darfur Ga’afar Abdel-Hakam said they collected more than 3000 illegal weapons from two localities expecting disarmament campaign will contribute to improving the security, social and economic conditions in the state.

In an interview with the Radio Omdurman Friday, Abdel-Hakam said his state has seen the largest proliferation rate of illegal arms in Darfur region, pointing out that the weapons come through the open borders with Chad and the Central African Republic.

He underlined the adverse impact of illegal weapons on the economic situation and the displacement of residents, saying the spread of these arms was due to rebellion and tribal conflicts mainly.

The governor further stressed that the residents have welcomed the disarmament campaign, saying the regular forces are capable of imposing security and protecting the residents’ property.

Meanwhile, the commissioner of West Bara locality, North Kordofan State Mubarak Abdallah Shomo said they collected 1900 weapons and 300 unregulated vehicles.

He said the arms would be handed over to the regional committee for the collection of weapons and unregulated vehicles in North Kordofan state capital, El-Obeid during the few coming days.

The commissioner said the disarmament campaign would continue, pointing out that it has contributed significantly to reducing the number of armed robbery incidents.

Launched last August, the six-month disarmament campaign aims to eliminate weapons in the conflict-affected areas in Sudan, particularly in Darfur region.
The Sudanese authorities say the spread of weapons among the rival tribes in the region is one of the main causes of Darfur’s instability.

However, some tribal leaders, such as Musa Hilal refuse to hand over their arms and defy the government. Observers fear that the second phase would generate armed clashes in the region between his militia and the government forces.

The campaign is currently voluntary but the higher committee for the collection of weapons and unregulated vehicles decided to start the forcible phase of the campaign in all the states of Sudan on 15 October.

(ST)

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