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Attacks on Darfurian students may lead to ethnic cleansing: say activists

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May 12, 2015 (KHARTOUM) - The "racist targeting" against Darfurian students at the universities in the Sudanese capital may lead to "ethnic cleansing" in Khartoum, warned Ahmed Hussein Adam, a Visiting Fellow at the Institute for African Development (IAD) at Cornell University.

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Aerial view of the Sudanese capital Khartoum where students supporting the ruling party clashed with Darfurians colleagues in different universities(File Photo/AFP)

On 29 April, a Sudanese student, Mohamed Awad, member of the National Congress Party (NCP) was killed during clashes between students belonging to the ruling party and others supporting Darfur rebels groups at the East Nile College (ENC) in Khartoum North.

Following the incident reports from the capital speak about indiscriminate attacks against Darfurians in the Sudanese universities. Activists also point to the involvement of the security apparatus and accuse it of backing the NCP members in their clashes against Darfurians.

"Darfuri students are experiencing unprecedented racist bloody campaign by the ruling party’s student wing militias as well as the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS)," said Adam in statements to Sudan Tribune.

Adam underscored that the government top officials are involved in this bloody campaign against the Darfur students. He further pointed that several government’s controlled newspapers are leading the "hate campaign" on students from Darfur region in the Sudanese universities

On Saturday "one of the leading pro-government columnists called on the government to evict Darfurian students from the universities, accusing them of supporting the armed movements," he said.

On Monday, radio Afia Darfur reported the renewal of clashes at Bahri University pointing that NCP students attacked a discussion corner held by Darfurian students supporting the Sudan Liberation Movement Minni Minnawi (SLM-MM).

Once the NCP students disrupted the discussion, "they attacked Darfurian students and the premises of Darfur Students Gathering at the university," a student told the radio station adding that three student were wounded.

"No doubt, the current bloody racist targeting against the Darfurian students is a part of the ongoing genocide in Darfur. The government perceives Darfurian students as security hazard," Adam said.

He underlined the need to protect these students, calling on the International community, including UN, AU, Arab League, EU, U.S. to act against this "racist" campaign.

"I also urge the UN Council of Human Rights, African Commission of Human Rights, Human Rights Watch, and Amnesty International and other human rights organizations and advocates to speak out before it is too late," he further said.

A senior research fellow for the study of democracy at the University of Westminster in London, Abdelwahab El-Affendi, said concerned by the unprecedented escalation of attacks on Darfurian students in different parts of the country.

"What is really disturbing is the large-scale spread of these confrontations and the increase of its ferocity as it is shown by the burning of university residence of Darfur female students in Khartoum North and the burning of a university residence for Darfur students in Dongla (capital of the state of Northern in Sudan) early last week," he wrote in an opinion article in Al- Quds al-Arabi newspaper on Tuesday.

El-Affendi who was a member of the ruling party before to distance himself from the regime, further mentioned that transporters in the capital of Northern state refused to take Darfurian students who wanted to leave the town, warning that "a disaster befell Sudan"

He further accused the ruling NCP of instrumentalisaing ethnic fears against African groups during the past 25 years of rule in Sudan.

Sudanese activists condemned the racial character of the violence on students from Darfur region and decided to launch a campaign to protect Darfurian students.

Adam hailed the formation of the National Campaign for the Protection of the Darfurian students and urged concrete action to protect them.

"I salute them for their courage and timely patriotic initiative. I call upon them to transform the initiative into actions to counter the ongoing escalating danger against the Darfurian students," he said.

The national campaign aims to monitor the attacks on the Darfurian students and sue their perpetrators legally.

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Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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