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North Darfur farmers' market raided

October 23 - 2015 KABKABIYA
Militiamen in a market in Darfur (file photo)
Militiamen in a market in Darfur (file photo)

Three people were wounded and four others were detained when armed med raided the vegetable, fruit, and tea market in Kabkabiya on Wednesday. Reportedly more than 2,000 market stands were removed.

One of the affected market sellers told Radio Dabanga that “a force of police and militiamen” raided the weekly crops markets in Kabkabiya and Bergi in North Darfur, where displaced people from El Salam camp shop. They entered the market in a vehicle with a Dushka machinegun mounted on top.

She estimated that the men removed about 1,470 stands (rakubas) that belong to the sellers in Kabkabiya, along with more than 800 stands in Bergi market. “They damaged the other property of the stand owners.”

The witness said that the men opened fire on one of the butchers when he refused to hand over his meat. Two butchers sustained injuries and were taken to Kabkabiya hospital for treatment.

“The destroyed and confiscated vegetables, fruits and other property must be worth tens of thousands of Sudanese pounds.” Some market sellers have demanded a compensation for the loss of their property, and to relocate the market to an alternative location.

The witness explained that most vendors in Kabkabiya and Bergi markets are widows, divorcees, and needy displaced people. “They pay all annual fees to the locality.

“Authorities have claimed that they have relations with drugs and weapon traders, which is not true,” she added. “The authorities are well-aware that militiamen trade drugs and weapons in broad daylight in other markets.”

Last week, a gunfight erupted between policemen and armed robbers in one of the markets, and an urban planning office was burgled in September. Kabkabiya's grand and crops markets were raided in July, too.

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