Death toll rises to 132, at least 208 wounded in Darfur clashes

The death toll from tribal violence in Sudan''s restive Darfur region has climbed to 132 as looting continued on Thursday.

A local Sudanese official said, “The death toll of tribal violence has risen to 132 in the residential Darfur region of Sudan, as plundering continued Thursday.”

Violence challenges Sudan’s transitional government in areas such as Darfur, where conflict often falls within ethnic lines, to put a stop to decades-long rebellions.

The last clashes were caused by the shooting of two people in the Masalit tribe at Genena, the capital of Western Darfur, said the United Nations earlier, at the camp for displaced people on Saturday.

There were fights between the tribes of Rizeigat and the Masalit with armed people both moving and authorities declaring a state of emergency in the West Darfur.

Mohamed Abdullah al-Doma, governor of Western Darfur, said at least 208 were injured, together with 132 people killed.

“I want to commend West Darfour, namely Genena residents, for their endurance of very hard circumstances two days ago when shells and bullets were flying everywhere,” Doma told reporters at a news conference in Sudan”s capital, Khartoum.

The fire has stopped, he added, but the plundering continues on the borders of the province.

Image Source BBC

Also, on Thursday the International Organization for Migration’s head, António Vitorino, condemned Genena’s recent escalation of violence, highlighting concerns over reports of attacks on women and children as well as humanitarian facilities.

Earlier this year, about 470 people were killed by tribal violence in western Darfur and south Darfur.

It also displaced more than 120,000 women and children, most of whom are at least 4,300 who, according to the United Nations, crossed into neighbouring Chad.

Afters a popular uprising that led the army to overthrow autocratic President Omar Al-Bashir in April 2019 Sudan is on a fragile path towards democracy. The country is now ruled by a military-civil government.

Doma blamed “famous militias” for the violence that the Al-Bashir regime trained and armed. He added that Chadian militias had crossed into Darfur and engaged in this last violence episode and that they have not disbanded nor dispossessed and confiscating any tribal wars to kill and steal.

There were no immediate comments from Chad, and he did not elaborate on his statement.

The conflict in Darfur came about when rebels from the central and sub-saharan communities of the region started an insurgency in 2003 and lamented the Arab government’s oppression in Khartoum.

The government of Al-Bashir responded with a sparkling earthquake campaign of aerial bombing and unleashed janjaweed militias, accused of mass murder and rape. Up to three hundred thousand people have been killed and 2.7 million driven home.

Al-Bashir, who has been held in prison since his ouster in 2019, has been charged by the International Criminal Court with war crimes and genocide allegedly as a leader in the Darfur attack camp.

Doma, the governor of West Darfur, criticised Khartoum’s central government for failing to obey his calls for strengthening of Darfur.

“More forces should be sent over because the local ones do not have the resources to handle the situation,” Doma said. “Darfur citizens are left on their own to face their destiny.” (AP) IND

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