17 civilians of Abu Zereiga executed, fighting increases in Darfur
A local militia of Shangil Tobaya executed seventeen (17) civilians from Abu Zereiga by firing squad after tying their hands behind their backs and splitting them into three groups with the first two groups comprising seven people and the third group comprising three. The 17 people were kidnapped a week ago when they went to retrieve a herd of 250 cattle.
A local militia of Shangil Tobaya executed seventeen (17) civilians from Abu Zereiga by firing squad after tying their hands behind their backs and splitting them into three groups with the first two groups comprising seven people and the third group comprising three. The 17 people were kidnapped a week ago when they went to retrieve a herd of 250 cattle. Witnesses stated that as the group returned after retrieving the cattle, they were attacked by government forces backed by local militias on seventeen Land Cruisers that had machine guns attached to them along with other different kind of weapons and two military helicopters. They claimed the helicopters bombarded the areas and fired at the group which was unarmed and confirmed that the group raised their arms in surrender and, as a result, the military forces kidnapped seventeen civilians, including Omar Abakr Idriss and Nour Eldeen Sinin Idriss, the principal of Abu Zereiga primary school. The witnesses also verified that the governmental military force handed the seventeen abducted people to the local militias who tied their hands behind their backs and divided them into three groups before shooting them in the heads. The militias then formed a military box over them to prevent anyone from taking the bodies. This has now been there for a week and no one has been able to come close for fear of being shot.
Another witness revealed to Radio Dabanga that the commissioner of El Fasher, an officer named Adam Sabi and the Minister Adam Hari Bosh managed to survive an assassination attempt in a trap which was prepared for them by militias the day before in south-east Shangil Tobaya when they were in a convoy of twelve cars and two tanks and on their way to retreive the corpses of the executed people. The witness said that one of the police officers who was accompanying the convoy managed to interfere at the last minute and make a number of phone calls which saved them. The witness said that the convoy returned back to El Fasher without reaching the place where the corpses where thrown, and confirmed that what happened shows that a tribe is being targeted in the area. They accused the government of giving the green light to the militias which it has armed to do what it wants without being held accountable.
Another witness told of the killing of Mohammed Salih Haroun, the guardian of the seventeen people who were executed in the city of Shangil Tobaya the day before. According to the witness, Mohammed Salih went with the convoy to Shangil Tobaya from Abu Zereiga. Reportedly the convoy, which was comprised of 21 cars, reached the army compound there. The commissioner, along with Mohamed Salih, entered the city. The commissioner returned a few minutes later carrying the dead body of Mohammed Salih with three bullets in his chest. The witness said that when they asked the commissioner what happened, the commissioner said that upon their arrival to the city, they were stopped by the Popular Defense Force (PDF) and Mohammed Salih was pulled out of the car by forces and shot.
In other developments, hundreds of civilians who were forced to leave their villages in North Darfur and seek refuge in the mountains and valleys after air strikes on their areas last week. Speaking to Radio Dabanga, they demanded the United Nations Security Council investigate what is happening in Darfur. A citizen told Radio Dabanga that the residents of the area are still living in fear of possible attacks from government militias at a time when planes continue to fly over the area. The citizen said that they were calling on to the international community for military interference on the ground to protect the civilians.
The plea was made as the Sudan Air Force bombarded the villages of Sujum and Kumra east of Jebel and, according to witnesses who spoke to Radio Dabanga, the air strikes led to the burning of three houses without taking lives.
Meanwhile the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) announced yesterday that it, along with Abdul Wahid’s Sudan Liberation Movement, managed to defeat an army battalion on the road between Zalingei and Gulu in West Darfur. JEM said that it seized a large number of weapons and removed the government forces from the road completely. Radio Dabanga could not get any verification from the spokesman of the army.