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African Centre: Sudan govt must do more to protect people in Darfur

June 15 - 2020 NEW YORK
A Darfuri gunman (File photo)
A Darfuri gunman (File photo)

In a statement on Monday, the New-York based African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies (ACJPS) expressed its deep concern over “the surge of targeted attacks against civilians in Darfur” since May this year.

The Centre documented four incidents involving attacks on civilians in five villages in Central, North, and South Darfur that left ten people dead and eighteen injured including an eight-month-old baby.

On May 21, gunmen riding on horses and others on camels killed three civilians and injured seven others in Gireida locality in South Darfur.

On June 2, Barbar and Danan villages north of Nierteti were attacked by militiamen*, ACJPS states. Three women were killed and six children were wounded. A day later, a group of militiamen raided Jorouf village in North Darfur. The attack left four men injured. Dozens of people fled to neighbouring villages.

ACJPS further reports that on June 4, militiamen riding in a Land Cruiser raided Karu village in Tawila locality in North Darfur. Three militiamen were allegedly killed, while another sustained serious injuries**.

The Centre condemns the arbitrary attacks on civilians in Darfur region and calls on “the transitional government to officially and publicly condemn these arbitrary attacks, unlawful killings and injury, and make it clear that these acts are absolutely prohibited and perpetrators will be held to account.

The Sudanese authorities should “immediately put in place measures to protect civilians in Darfur region. Put in place tightened restrictions on the use and supply of arms and ammunitions, and a concerted effort to control arms and ammunition in the region should be launched, as well as controls over the use of ammunition and the presence of militias and weapons in public places”.

ACJPS further urges Unamid “to fulfil its mandate to contribute to the protection of civilian populations under imminent threat of physical violence, and prevent attacks against civilians within its capability and areas of deployment”.

The international community, particularly the European Union, United States, UN and African Union, should “support the Transitional Government of Sudan to meet its legal obligations under international human rights and humanitarian law”.

* According to reports received by Radio Dabanga, the victims were hit by missiles during clashes between government forces and rebel combatants.

** A displaced community leader told Radio Dabanga however that militiamen shot a villager dead in Karu and wounded another. Two herders were killed in a separate incident in the area.

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