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14 people detained in container by militiamen in South Kordofan freed by joint force

October 9 - 2019 TALODI / NYALA / BERBER
Sit-in against toxic mining in Talodi last week (RD)
Sit-in against toxic mining in Talodi last week (RD)

On Tuesday, a joint committee of the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) and anti-gold mining committees in Talodi locality in South Kordofan managed to release 14 people detained by the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) government militia on Tuesday in the El Tagoula mine. The RSF reportedly placed the, detainees in a closed container as a makeshift detention centre where they stole their belongings and the property of others.

Dr Bushra Gamar, director of the Sudanese Human Rights and Development Organisation (HUDO), said in an interview with Radio Dabanga that the joint committee was formed after the people living near gold mines in El Leri, Kalogi and Talodi resorted to the army for protection and protested in front of the garrison in Talodi.

He said that SAF officers apologised to the people for what happened to them and promised them to return their stolen property, including four motorcycles and cash. He said, four of the women were severely beaten and were robbed of their property.

Gamar explained that the committee began yesterday to return stolen belongings and money to their owners via military intelligence.

He described the situation until yesterday evening in the three areas as calm and stable after the local committee started to take the necessary measures.

Weapons

Gamar strongly denied reports of some protestors carrying weapons.

He said, “The beneficiary group of these factories is trying to find justification for the excessive use of force against peaceful protesters”. He pointed out that the RSF, after they fled on Monday from angry protestors, abandoned their weapons. “The people in turn handed them over to the Military Intelligence unit in the area, which indicates conclusively the lie of these reports.”

Gamar explained that three wounded were taken to hospitals in Khartoum. One man had his leg amputated on Monday.

Talodi Hospital received 10 people wounded on Monday, including one who was stabbed with a knife.

Gamar expressed doubt in the investigation committee as “unfair and nondependent, with members involved in the events and the cause of the crisis, represented by the RSF and the security apparatus”.

HUDO calls for “an immediate cessation of mining operations in South Kordofan (Kadugli, Talodi, El Leri, Kalogi, El Terter, Abu Jubeiha, and Rashad) and any other areas in the Nuba Mountains where this irresponsible mining is practiced”.

Gamar also called for halting irresponsible mining operations in Darfur, northern Sudan, Blue Nile state and other states in Sudan.

He called in this regard to conduct a comprehensive review of all contracts for the work of these companies to financial responsibilities in the money earned in those areas.

He also demanded a fair compensation for all those affected by the work of these companies anywhere in Sudan, to bring to trial “anyone who in making huge money by theses dangerous practices, whatever their positions.”

Detainees

A statement by HUDO yesterday following Dr Bushra Gamar’s interview with Radio Dabanga, confirms that on October7, armed RSF soldiers came on twenty seven vehicles and invaded Talodi gold mines. They arrested, looted and assaulted people, before being forced by Talodi residents and military to release the arrested people and bring back the looted items. They were forced to leave the town.

The names of people who were detained are; Elsadiq Hamdan, Badawi Mahadi Mursal, Sabir Jamaa, Musa Osman, Sadam Mohammed, Mohammed Nour, Banat Hanu, Yousif Elnaw, Zakaria Hamdan, Hussein Kuku, Enaei Saeed, Saad Mohammed, Elgeili Elhaj and Abduelmajeed Mohammed. Others who were injured and their items were stolen are: Farah Ramadan, Eltahir Musfafa, Amir Ismail, Rugaya Yagoup, Hanan Ibrahim, Ekram Mustafa, Eltouma, Hemaidan Alawi, and Gasim Abduelkareim (who was stabbed).

South Darfur

In Darfur, the government of South Darfur announced the cessation of all forms of mining in in Mershing, East Jebel Marra, and El Wehda localities and gave the workers of exploration in these areas until Thursday to adjust their status.

The acting governor of South Darfur, Maj Gen Hashim Khalid, attributed the suspension to reasons described as “security, social and environmental,” pointing out that “this region has witnessed negative phenomena and has become a security threat to the entire state”.

He stressed their efforts to codify exploration operations in this region and adjust status there.

On Tuesday the residents of Berber of the River Nile state in northern Sudan, staged mass demonstrations in front of the cement factory in Berber demanding an immediate halt because of the spread of diseases among people and livestock caused by the dust of the factory.

The demonstration was attended by people of Berber and places south of Berber from Dikka, El Makhref, El Goz, Uneybis and Makeilab.

They pointed out that all on Tuesday were affected by the factory’s existence, especially the pupils of basic schools located near the factory site.


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