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30 people killed in intercommunal violence in South Darfur

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UNAMID Armored Personnel Carrier (APC) during a routine patrol near Tabit area, North Darfur on 25 November 2018 (UNAMID Photo)May 6, 2020 (KHARTOUM/NYALA) - About 30 civilians were killed in South Darfur state in intercommunal violence on Tuesday, according to a statement by the office of the Sudanese prime minister.

As the hybrid peacekeeping force prepares to exit Darfur definitively, reports from the western Sudan region points to the increasing tribal fighting and attacks on civilians, further destabilizing one of Sudan’s most volatile regions.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, Governor Hashim Khalid said that the fighting between Fellata and Rizeigat began on Tuesday at 03:00 am on the backdrop of cattle rustling and its transfer to Tullus area, home of the Fellata people.

He added that the violence very quickly spread in the region to include the areas of Balail, Hajir Togo, Umm Kuja, Abujabra, Damso, Tulus and Katila.

Khaled stressed that the situation in these areas is still strained, adding that the security committee assessed the situation and decided to send more 80 troops vehicles in addition to the 13 vehicles already deployed in these areas.

In a joint report to the Security Council last March, the UN and the African Union said that the UNAMID recorded five tribal clashes from October 2019 to the end of January 2020.

For the period from 15 October 2019 to 31 January 2020, UNAMID recorded a total of five intercommunal clashes resulting in 70 fatalities, compared with 10 intercommunal clashes and 30 fatalities in the period from 15 July to 14 October.

The most significant was the fighting triggered by a personal dispute between the Arab tribes of West Darfur and the displaced Massalit people living in Krinding camp outside the state capital El Geneina on 29 December 2019.

The governor said he deployed troops in three areas to prevent fighters build-up and mobilization, directed to use military drones to locate the tribal fighters and to impose a curfew in the localities of Katila, Tulus, Damso.

"We have issued instructions to the Air Force and the forces deployed in the region to deal with any gatherings as an enemy," he further stressed.

He further disclosed that a reserve brigade force has arrived from Zalingei of Central Darfur adding they will be tasked with the arrest of "criminals" who took part in the tribal violence.

During the past years, the Sudanese authorities resorted to tribal arbitration to settle intercommunal fighting. However, this doctrine has been abandoned and it was decided to bring the culprits to justice.

Hamdok directs to restore order

In a phone call with the governor, Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok directed to restore peace and order said a statement issued by his office.

Hamdok "directed to enforce the law strictly and to impose the authority of the state in a way that such attacks do not be repeated," reads the statement.

The governor, according to Hamdok office, briefed the prime minister about the security situation and confirmed that the death toll has reached 30 people.

This tribal violence took place as the Sudanese government is under international pressure to accept the inclusion of three police units within a political mission the United Nations consider to deploy in Sudan to support peace and democratic transition.

(ST)

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  • 7 May 14:51, by Fathi

    Smh. This type of escalation occurs when people lose faith in gov ability to hold them accountable. Tribal arbitration sounds like a waste of time. Make an example out of those found to be responsible. Where is this so called international pressure when it comes to lifting sanctions & helping the economy?

    repondre message

    • 7 May 14:55, by Fathi

      Economic unrest (+ lack of political cohesion) has led to Sudan’s military coups in the past. The US & their ME puppets need to stop undermining transitions toward democracy.

      repondre message

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