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Repeated attacks on farmers in North Darfur’s Kabkabiya

July 15 - 2018 KABKABIYA
Militants cut 2,000 fruit trees in North Darfur’s Kutum, June 8, 2018 (RD)
Militants cut 2,000 fruit trees in North Darfur’s Kutum, June 8, 2018 (RD)

Displaced farmers in Kabkabiya in North Darfur complain about repeated attacks by militant herders who prevent them of cultivating their land. Two returnees were shot at their farms near Janga.

Displaced farmers who returned to the villages of Wad Tamra, Arbabuyout, Badi, and Beni Mansour in Kabkabiya locality to cultivate their land, told Radio Dabanga that a group of armed herders are wreaking havoc in the area,

“Three weeks ago, a large group of armed herders raided the area, and gathered all of us in one place,” one of the victims said. “They severely beat us and told us that our farms have been turned in to pastures, and we should leave as soon as possible.”

Returnees attacked

Unidentified gunmen shot two farmers in the area of Janga in Kabkabiya on Wednesday evening.

A farmer told this station they were among the displaced people who returned from Kabkabiya and Kassab camps for the displaced to their villages in the area of Janga after the Commissioner of Kabkabiya told them that the situation had become safe.

“After we began cleaning the soil, gunmen stormed our lands and started to shoot. Abakar Wad Arjoun and Mohamed Ismail were seriously wounded,” he said. “They were taken to Kabkabiya Hospital.”

Secure

After a large disarmament campaign in Darfur last year that only partially succeeded, the Sudanese government considers the situation in the conflict-torn western region safe enough to encourage the displaced in the camps to return to their areas of origin. Khartoum as well pushes for the exit of the Unamid peacekeepers from Darfur.

However Radio Dabanga received multiple reports about returnees being attacked. In June at least 19 farmers were shot in North Darfur’s Kutum. They had returned from the camps for the displaced to cultivate their lands. In June, about 2,000 fruit trees were found cut in Kutum, allegedly done to prevent displaced landowners from returning to the area.

The displaced in the camps say the insecurity is caused by roaming militiamen and the abundance of weapons as well as the danger of running into militant Arab tribesmen and migrants from Chad, Mali, and Niger who settled in their home areas. In May, approximately 250 families were forced to return to camps in Kabkabiya after mediation attempts with new settlers in their home villages failed.

In addition, attacks by army soldiers and paramilitaries of the Rapid Support Forces on villages in Jebel Marra have caused the displacement of thousands of villagers this year.


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