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At least 5,000 people displaced after Sudan-Ethiopia border violence

June 2 - 2020 EL GEDAREF
Ethiopian 'shifta' gunman (File photo)
Ethiopian 'shifta' gunman (File photo)

Residents of Barakat Nourein and Mashrou El Fursan in Sudan’s El Gedaref are reportedly suffering from a humanitarian crisis following cross-border violence involving Ethiopian militiamen on Thursday during which a Sudanese army captain was killed.

Shihabeldin Wadelyam, a leading member of the Forces for Freedom and Change in El Gureisha locality told Radio Dabanga that residents in these areas have been living in fear because of the recent attacks. He confirmed that a significant number of people fled their homes after rumours that the Ethiopian militia is preparing new attacks.

Wadelyam also explained that during daytime the residents of Barakat Nourein are hiding in El Kutabi and other adjacent areas. “About 5,000 people have been displaced now,” he said.

On Monday, the Forces for Freedom and Change and the Resistance Committees in cooperation with the Zakat (Muslim alms) Chamber were able to send food to the affected people. “They also managed to dig a well for them,” Wadelyam said.

Witnesses told Radio Dabanga last week that a group of Ethiopian gunmen (called shifta in the region) raided Barakat Nourein in El Gureisha locality on the border with Ethiopia on Thursday. An army captain was killed in the ensuing clashes and three civilians were wounded.

The gunmen were supported by hundreds of Ethiopian soldiers, Sudanese army spokesperson Brig Amer El Hasan said in Khartoum the following day.

The Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Sunday regarding the “Ethiopian-Sudan border incident“ on May 28 that “there is no honourable reason for the two countries to descend into hostility”.

Port Sudan

In Port Sudan, the Resistance Committees condemned shooting by of a member of the army while residents were protesting against an acute shortage of drinking water and soaring of food prices.

In a statement on Monday, the resistance committees said that while some residents were protesting a Sudanese soldier opened intensive fire in the air in Deim Jabir district, which horrified the residents.

The statement described the act as irresponsible and unlawful. The statement added that they would file a complaint against those responsible.


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