Home | News    Wednesday 2 November 2011

Refugees in Ethiopia accuse Sudanese army of "killing and raping civilians"

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By Tesfa-Alem Tekle

November 1, 2011 (ADDIS ABABA) - Sudanese government forces and militias are “killing and raping civilians in Blue Nile state,” according to a human rights group which spoke to refugees who recently fled into Ethiopia to escape conflict in Blue Nile state.

The new report, released on Tuesday by the US based rights group, Enough Project, comes as aerial bombings in Sudan’s Blue Nile state are reportedly forcing a new wave of refugees into neighboring Ethiopia.

Fighting between the army and armed groups loyal to the former governor, Malik Aggar, began in September. Aggar’s party - the northern sector of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM-N) - has since been outlawed by Khartoum, which has ruled out foreign mediation in Blue Nile as well as in South Kordofan, where conflict with the same group started in June.

Both states border newly-independent South Sudan, and fought with the southern-based SPLM until a 2005 peace deal. However the agreement was not fully implemented in the two areas, which have strong SPLM-N support. Controversial elections in South Kordofan, in which the SPLM-N lost, and Khartoum’s insistence that the group disarm are believed to have triggered the fighting.

Since the outbreak of violence between government forces and the SPLM-N two months ago, nearly 30,000 people have crossed the border into Ethiopia.

Refugees told Enough Project researchers on recent visit to Sherkole refugee camp and the border town of Kurmuk that Sudanese "government forces were targeting, killing, and raping civilians."

"Soldiers with small arms were chasing the civilians," the group quoted one refugee from Um Darfa town to have said.

“They were supported by the Fellata (an ethnic group in Blue Nile), who captured some of the civilians and slaughtered people," the refugee said. He added, "It’s all because we are black."

The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has opened a new camp in western Ethiopia as hostilities in Sudan’s Blue Nile state continue to drive more refugees to the Horn of Africa nation.

UNHCR on Friday said that some 2,000 more people from Sudan’s Blue Nile state had fled into Ethiopia, after air strikes in areas between Blue Nile’s capital, Damazin, and the town of Kurmuk, near the Ethiopian border.

The rights group said further investigations were needed into the alleged atrocities and for immediate humanitarian access to conflict victims.

"These stories provide only a glimpse into the civilian impact of the war in Blue Nile," said Amanda Hsiao, an Enough Project researcher.

"They underscore the need for a comprehensive investigation into the alleged atrocities as well as international humanitarian access into the area, especially as ground combat intensifies with the end of the rainy season."

(ST)

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  • 2 November 2011 22:07, by Guandong

    I want this president omar Bashir to face ICC for the act of inhumanity,rapping, killing innocent women and childern of blue nile. its thesame way he trode us. I need ICC to cuaght him and his followers to face thesame penality as he did to others.
    Bashir, its very clear in the UDHR that all people are equal before the law. don’t you know this rule? you are totaly wrong with your militias.

    repondre message

  • 22 April 2013 15:34, by dennishobson

    nZsl1enXVpWJfkHnRZ8eORIQvSDTi6ssanyong madeira plastica composite decking You should take part in a contest for one of the best blogs on the web. I will recommend this site!

    repondre message

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