All roads to West Darfur capital blocked by Arab sit-in
The sit-in of Arab tribes in El Geneina, capital of West Darfur, has entered its second week. The protestors have closed all roads to and from the city.
Delegations from Zalingei and Nyala arrived at the sit-in square in Kubari El Naseem in El Geneina to support the protestor’s demands to dismiss state governor Mohamed El Doma, move the camps for displaced people from the city, and restructure the state police force.
The closure of roads is isolating the city of El Geneina and causes a rise in prices of goods.
More than 130,000 displaced people who have fled recent violent attacks in El Geneina now live in harsh conditions in more than 60 shelters. The displaced say that these shelters are overcrowded and that one family lives in an area not exceeding two square meters. They also say that food and water rations are not distributed regularly and there is a lack of toilets.
The displaced have received tarpaulin and sorghum from the World Food Programme (WFP), they stated. They called on other humanitarian organisations to urgently intervene and provide aid.
West Darfur activists said in a statement that the closing of the roads leading to El Geneina aims to block the way for any humanitarian aid to arrive to the shelters of the displaced, or to transfer the injured to Khartoum. The activists called for the prosecution of the organisers of what they describe as a “siege”.
The “Geneina’s People Reconciliation Initiative”, led by local leader Mohamed Adam, held a meeting at the University of El Geneina yesterday. The participants discussed the need to bridge views between the Masalit and Arab tribes and reach a joint solution that satisfies both parties.
Mohamed Adam said that they have sat down with the two parties and discussed the roots of the conflict, identifying points of disagreement, and developing proposals and solutions. He also said that there will be a meeting between the two parties regarding tolerance and compromise that looks to turn the page on past differences and encourage both parties to renounce violence and promote the spread of peace.
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