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Four children die in South Darfur ammo storage explosion

November 13 - 2017 NYALA
Collected weapons in Nyala, South Darfur, during the arms collection campaign in November 2017 (file photo)
Collected weapons in Nyala, South Darfur, during the arms collection campaign in November 2017 (file photo)

Four children died in their family's house when an ammunition storage exploded in the South Darfur capital Nyala on Saturday. 

The children all belong to a family that lives in the residential district El Maasani. A fifth child was seriously injured by the explosion.

The South Darfur government announced that a joint police and military intelligence committee will inspect and collect remnants of the exploded ammunition storage in El Maasani and surrounding areas.

The incident took place 150 metres from where an arms storage exploded in May this year. This explosion emanated from the arms storage of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), killed 12 people and wounded at least 18 others. State government authorities largely remained absent in the days following the incident, which led to condemnations by victims and relatives of the deceased.

Yesterday the state's deputy governor called on people to stay away from the affected area and not to touch any foreign objects in the street. “There may be some explosives that have not ignited yet,” he said in a statement to the press.

Legal expert Saleh Mahmoud told Radio Dabanga in May that according to international law, international covenants, and national laws, keeping stockpiles of dangerous substances or explosives in civilian residential areas can endanger the lives of civilians. Therefore the government authorities should be among the responsible for the casualties and damage caused to Nyala.

Waste ban

Meanwhile the Nyala municipality commissioner, El Aagib Mohamed Ismael, issued a local order that banned the dump of household waste and dead animals in Nyala Valley. Violation is punishable by a fine of SDG500 ($75).

Added in the order is the decision that the means used to transport waste in the valley shall be confiscated together with the removal of waste.

Ismael also issued a local order that forbids the manufacture of bricks at residential districts and valleys in Nyala locality. The order stipulated that anyone who contravenes the matter shall be fined SDG1000 ($150).

Arms collection

The collection of weapons that were illegally held by militiamen and civilians in Nyala city has resulted in 3,200 seized weapons so far. These are different kinds of light and heavy weapons. 6,000 weapons have been collected from the South Darfur localities.

State Deputy-Governor Sabeel Ahmed Sabeel spoke at the arms exhibition set up by the armed forces of Nyala. He said that the forced arms collection started last week and he stressed that it “will reach all people, without the exception of anyone”.

The campaign resulted in West Darfur, El Geneina locality alone in the collection of 2,500 firearms by the first of October and police seized a total of 2,000 unlicensed vehicles without number plates last week.


Related:

Nyala explosion victims: 'Where are the state officials?' (May 26, 2017) 


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