According to President Omar Al Bashir, all rebel combatants in Darfur will soon be eliminated by the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF). The rebel movements contradict his claims.
In a public speech in El Geneina, capital of West Darfur, on Sunday, the President said that the Sudanese army and the allied RSF militia troops continue to “pursue the insurgents all over the country”, adding that “in particular the rebels in Darfur will soon be crushed”.
Al Bashir also announced that he will order the government forces to collect weapons from civilians, as “arms are to remain in the hands of the regular forces only”.
The Sudanese president paid a two-day visit to El Geneina for the occasion of the opening of the Zalingei-El Geneina part of the Salvation Road, a road network aimed at connecting the Darfur states with each other, with Khartoum, the Central African Republic, and Chad.
“For Al Bashir, victory means killing civilians, plundering their houses, and destroying their water sources.”
The Darfuri rebel movements, however, mocked Al Bashir’s speech, stressing that “the coming days will be full of surprises”.
The spokesman for the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), Jibril Adam Bilal, described the speech as redundant. “It is used for political and media consumption only”.
“The President’s words are an attempt to lift the morale of the government forces and militias after the crushing defeats in the Nuba Mountains, and East Jebel Marra,” he stated.
Abdallah Mursal, the spokesman for the sudan Libertion Movement, commanded by Minni Minawi also downplayed the president’s speech in El Geneina. “For Al Bashir, victory means killing civilians, robbing them of their property, and destroying of water sources, while he knows very well that his troops have been defeated at the battlefields in South Kordofan and Darfur.”