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Influx of newly displaced families to Kutum camps

June 20 - 2017 KUTUM
New arrivals at Zamzam camp for the displaced near El Fasher, capital of North Darfur (Hamid Abdulsalam/Unamid)
New arrivals at Zamzam camp for the displaced near El Fasher, capital of North Darfur (Hamid Abdulsalam/Unamid)

Hundreds of displaced families arrived from Ein Siro, the scene of recent military confrontations, in a camp in Kutum locality. The camp is marked by insecurity and a bad humanitarian situation, a camp leader said.

Displaced people in Kassab camp in North Darfur confirmed the difficulty of the security and humanitarian situation, in addition to a lack of education and health services. The head of the camp, Sheikh El Tahir Ismail, told Radio Dabanga that a delegation from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) talked with camp representatives about the security, food, health, education and water issues.

“We told them that the security situation is not settled, especially after the incidents in Ein Siro. From the start of the fighting until now, we have received 373 new displaced families, amounting to 1,428 people.”

Ismail said he expected more new displaced people to arrive from Ein Siro.

Military confrontations with armed movements were reported in Ein Siro, in north-west Kutum, starting 28 May. Areas affected by such attacks were Marla, Muzbad, Um Baru, Adoala and Arori and other areas of Karnoi locality. There are reports of arrests and forced disappearance of large numbers of civilians in these areas arrested under the pretext of communicating with the armed movements, according to a Darfur-focused documentation centre.

As one of the village elders reported to Radio Dabanga following the attack on Ein Siro, after having fled to the mountains with villagers, residents of the dozens of small villages were unable to return as militiamen “were still deployed in the area. […] We are watching them pillaging, from the mountains.”


Sheikh Ismail said that they explained to the OCHA delegation that a reduction of the food rations by half has negatively impacted the lives of the displaced people. “The reduction impacts the work opportunities for camp residents.

“They may be subject to attacks when venturing out of the camp to collect straw and firewood. Also, the people face a water shortage after one of the organisations withdrew and water management was transferred to the displaced people.”

This caused the continued non-operation of 24 out of 28 water pumps, Ismail claimed, because the camp residents are unable to provide money for the maintenance.”


The sheikh explained to the OCHA delegation that the shortage of classrooms and construction material as straw have caused problems for children to attend classes, in addition to the shortage of books and seating material.

“Together with problems to pay their tuition fees, this has led to an increased rate of school dropout among displaced students.”

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