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Ongoing road blockade by gunmen in Darfur causes shortage

December 16 - 2016 SORTONY / DERIBAT
Militiamen in Darfur (file photo)
Militiamen in Darfur (file photo)

Displaced people in Sortony camp in Kabkabiya locality and residents in Jebel Marra are regularly assaulted by militiamen who are also closing the roads. Residents complained that they are running out of provisions.

Displaced people venturing out of Sortony to collect firewood and straw are most often the victims of beatings, robberies and intimidation by armed shephers and militia members. A listener reported that most militiamen are affiliated with a local militia leader named Adbab Mohamed Khater.

They also regularly close roads leading to the camp, where 22,000 newly displaced people from Jebel Marra are registered. “Unamid (the peacekeeping mission of the UN and AU) should protect us when we go out to collect firewood,” the listener said.

In October, militiamen blocked or imposed passage fees on tankers bringing water to Sortony. Also traders and truck drivers protested the 'tolls' imposed by militiamen by going on strike in September.

For example in Jebel Marra, the road between Deribat to El Fasher and Nyala has been closed by gunmen for ten days in a row, a source reported to Radio Dabanga today. “They told us that they will not open the road unless their lost camels and cows are recovered. They accuse locals of stealing them.

“Or they have to pay a compensation of SDG4 million ($607,000), before they re-open the road for us.”

People in Deribat have complained that they are running out of food, medicine and fuel because of the ongoing road blockade.

Livestock theft

In Dolbet, southwest of El Fasher city, armed men stole 41 cows and 25 sheep on Wednesday. A witness told Radio Dabanga that the group of militants, riding on camels, fired into the air before stealing the cattle. No casualties have been reported.

The cattle thieves moved towards Malam in South Darfur, the witness said.


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