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Hostility in Darfur: 160 Dead and Counting

Horrific clashes in the western Sudanese region of Darfur have resulted in 160 deaths. 


 


Official sources have uncovered the recent escalations in the ongoing war. The United Nations has called for an open and transparent investigation to reprimand those responsible. 


 


The inter-communal clashes in the Darfur region have been an escalating situation that began back in 2003. A cease-fire peace agreement in October 2020 sought to bring tensions to an end, but rebellious and militia groups have kept the quarrel alive with casualties tallying up to 300,000 deaths, and 2.5 million displaced thus far. 


 


The Sudan Tribune news agency and officials have stipulated that intense fighting sparked in the city of Kenereik, located about 50 miles (80 km) east of El Geneina, the Capital of Western Darfur. Arab militia groups supposedly entered the city on Friday, April 22 after the alleged killing of two Arab herdsmen. 


 


Naseer al Zein, the executive director of the Kereneik community said the situation is “very difficult,” as the infiltration of the militia groups warranted various revengeful clashes where 8 people were wounded and 16 injured. The violence accumulated on Sunday. 


 


Doctors Without Borders (MSF) reported an attack at a hospital where some of their staff were operating in Kreinik. Bakri Abu Bakr, the MSF’s director of operations in Sudan informed that "three people have died, including two health workers." The hospital pharmacy was also looted. No MSF staff died at this specific location as there was no one on-site at the time of the attack.


 


One hospital staff member was killed on Sunday at the University Hospital in El Geneina where MSF workers were present. According to Abu Bakr, “There was a violent intrusion with shots fired into the facility, including the emergency area…we are shocked by these attacks. We condemn these deadly attacks in the strongest terms. Medical structures and their personnel are protected in conflict. All parties to any conflict must respect it, always.”


 


The spokesman for the General Coordinator for Refugees and Displaced Persons in Darfur, Adam Regal took to his Facebook to accuse government officials of being behind the attack and supporting the militias. As stated by Regal, the hostile groups have “committed killings, burning, lootings, and torture without mercy.”


 


The United Nations relief coordinator for South Sudan has called on the UN security council and the African Union (AU) to adopt “decisive measures to protect displaced and defenseless civilians in the Darfur region.” 


 


Officials from the UN are also blaming the Janjaweed militia, who have been accused of unleashing violence and committing crimes against humanity in the Darfur conflict. Since the beginning of the problem in 2003, many of the Janjaweed have integrated into the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces that overthrew the previous government in October 2021.


General Mohamed Mamdan Dagalo, the de facto deputy leader of Sudan is the commander of the forces and UN officials do not believe he has any intentions of protecting the lives of the innocent. 


 


Adam Regal has requested the International Criminal Court (ICC) to carefully analyze and investigate the worsening of the crisis, since the withdrawal of troops from the African Union and United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) in mid-2021. 


 


The militia has prevented already displaced people from receiving humanitarian aid. Houses, villages, and hospitals have faced hostility, increasing the number of people that need the support of the NGOs and the United Nations.


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Tags: #UN #Sudan #Casualties #Darfur #Crimesagainsthumanity #AU #Humanitarianintervention



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