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Ethiopian gunmen abduct two Sudanese in El Gedaref

November 13 - 2015 EL GALLABAT
Eastern Sudanese camel herder in El Butana, El Gedaref state (postconflict.unep.ch)
Eastern Sudanese camel herder in El Butana, El Gedaref state (postconflict.unep.ch)

Militiamen from Ethiopia abducted two Sudanese people in Basunda in the southern part of El Gedaref on Wednesday afternoon. The number of abducted people has amounted to 14 people during the recent period, and officials are concerned about the growing presence of Ethiopian militiamen.

Basunda's legislative council member Salah Yahya Adam told Radio Dabanga that this is the second kidnapping in El Gallabat locality in one month. He said that the militant Ethiopian 'Shifta' abducted the two in Abu Tahir area. They have demanded a ransom of SDG150,000 ($24,460) prior to their release. The money has to be sent to them via credit transfer, or brought by harmless people.

An independent MP in El Fashaga expressed his concerns about the repeated kidnappings of civilians and the deteriorated security in the area of the border with Ethiopia. Mubarak El Nur claimed that the Ethiopian militias enjoy protection of the Ethiopian authorities.

Osman Nafi, Sudan's Ambassador to Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, made the same statement in an interview with El Sayha newspaper. The militias that attack Sudanese farmers are supported by the provincial government of Ethiopia, without any support from the central government, he claimed.

'Sudan has given the Ethiopian militias an opportunity to expand in those places,' Nafi said, pointing out that these areas are subject to the rule of some tribes that used to rule areas in Ethiopia in the past.

The Sudanese-Ethiopian border line of El Gedaref state is a disputed one. Recently, Sudanese farmers in El Fashaga locality were expelled by Ethiopian gunmen. Reportely about 2,000 Ethiopian farmers are now cultivating the lands in the eastern part of El Gedaref state.


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