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Hamar 'Central Kordofan’ lobby clears road to North Darfur after week-long closure

October 23 - 2022 EN NEHOUD
A transport lorry in Sudan (File photo: Albert Gonzalez Farran / Unamid)
A transport lorry in Sudan (File photo: Albert Gonzalez Farran / Unamid)

Protesting Hamar tribesmen have reopened the road linking En Nehoud in West Kordofan to the North Darfur capital of El Fasher after a week-long closure. They have given the Sudan government a month to implement their demands to establish the state of ‘Central Kordofan’ with its capital at En Nehoud.

The head of the High Committee for the Implementation of the Decisions of the Hamar, El Safi Hamad, told Radio Dabanga that the road was reopened and the sit-in lifted on Thursday evening, following a visit by a delegation from the Sudanese federal government, which included representatives of the Sovereignty Council and a number of ministries. They promised the Hamar that they will present their demands to the authorities in Khartoum.

Hamad explained that their demands include placing the public funds collected in the city of En Nehoud in a special account not related to West Kordofan state.

“If the central government does not respond to the demands of the Hamar, we will return to the sit-in, block the road, and stop collecting money again,” he added.

Radio Dabanga previously reported that angry Hamar organised a large demonstration in En Nehoud on October 1 and also occupied premises of the Sudanese Company for Mineral Resources. In a press statement at the time, Hamad said that they are calling for a new state of Central Kordofan consisting of six localities, with En Nehoud as its capital.

Fighting broke out in Abu Zabad on September 11 following a conflict concerning the demarcation of the border between the Hamar and Misseriya tribes in the area. The clashes, that lasted until the next morning, left at least six people dead. More than 20 others were injured.

The conflicting parties signed a reconciliation agreement on September 21.

The African Centre for Justice and Peace Studies warned that the conflict could have serious negative impacts on the region, which might also impact South Kordofan. The border between the two states is in reality very vague, as the Nuba Mountains cover not only a large part of South Kordofan, but also stretch into the eastern parts of West Kordofan.

The Sudan People Liberation Movement-North faction led by Abdelaziz El Hilu which controls parts of South Kordofan, called on all tribes living in West Kordofan to unite. In a statement, the rebel movement explained that the strife between the Misseriya and the Hamar does not benefit either of the two tribes, and appealed to the two parties to reconcile. 

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