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Joint Sudanese military force begins tasks in El Geneina following massacre

January 23 - 2021 EL GENEINA
Member of the joint military force surrounded by Darfur's newly displaced on January 21 (Social media)
Member of the joint military force surrounded by Darfur's newly displaced on January 21 (Social media)

The joint security force in West Darfur began carrying out its tasks yesterday, after it was deployed in all eight localities following the El Geneina massacre, in which 162 people were killed, about 215 people were injured, and roughly 90,000 were forced to flee.

The Governor of West Darfur, Mohamed El Doma, explained that this joint force consists of the Central Reserve Police, the army, and Rapid Support Forces (RSF). They will take instructions and directives from the army based in West Darfur.

He added that the city of El Geneina has been divided into areas that require urgent and immediate attention, and that systems have been created to warn citizens within hours of the arrival of large forces.

A cautious calm and the cease of gunfire was reported in El Geneina on Thursday, after the arrival of military reinforcements. Traders at the market demanded the government to “reassure the people.” Peaceful coexistence and the promotion of the values ​​of social peace will have a role in El Geneina’s recovery, said El Doma.

Medical support

The Federal Ministry of Health dispatched a medical support delegation to help the wounded and injured in El Geneina on Tuesday. The head of the delegation is Dr Alaeldin Naged, a specialist in pancreatic surgery and Deputy Director General of Bin Sina Hospital.

The delegation was greeted by the Director General of the Ministry of Health in West Darfur and a number of doctors. After their arrival in El Geneina, they went to see the wounded and injured in a number of hospitals in El Geneina, including the Naseem Hospital and the Teaching Hospital.

In an interview with Radio Dabanga, a number of doctors said that they brought large quantities of medical supplies from the Ministry of Health, along with additional stock from the market.

In a statement this week, the Displaced People Gathering has appealed to “all national and international organisations, civil society organisations, Resistance Committees, women's organisations, youth and student associations, and businessmen in the country to provide humanitarian and health assistance in shelter centres and displacement sites.”

The excessive violence last weekend was triggered by the killing of an Arab herdsman by a member of the Masalit tribe near El Geneina. Though the perpetrator was arrested, the relatives of the victim sought revenge by themselves. In response, large groups of Arab tribesmen attacked El Geneina and the two Kerending camps near the town “from all directions” in the early hours of Saturday. According to the Darfur Bar Association, they were supported by groups of gunmen from North and Central Darfur and the border area with Chad.

At the end of last year, the governor of Central Darfur warned of an increase in violence now that the UNAMID mission is withdrawing from the region. Protests against the insecurity and violence, and against the UNAMID exit, have taken place across Darfur in the past few months.

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