Six Darfuri Sheikhs slain by hungry mob at refugee camp in Chad
Six Sheikhs of the Bredjing camp that houses mainly Darfuri refugees near Adré in eastern Chad were killed, and 17 others injured in clashes and mob violence in the camp on Monday.
Sheikh Ali Yagoub, head of the Treguine refugee camp, located near Bredjing camp, said that the Darfuri refugees in Bredjing camp rejected the decision of the humanitarian organisations to stop the food rations of some 2,000 refugees out of 43,000 in the camp based on the inventory of the food cards on the pretext that they are capable.
He said the refugees rejected the decision and agreed with the camp sheikh not to take food if it is not distributed for all refugees.
He explained that in a meeting with donor organisations, the head of the camp, Dahiya Ismail, agreed to the distribution of food according to the inventory of organisations similar to the rest of the camps. Some refugees considered this a concession by the head of the camp and the sheikhs, as well as an acceptance of the idea of voluntary return.
Regarding the developments that followed this problem, the sheikh said that a committee that he had joined with the Omda of the area had mediated to solve the problems at the request of the governor of Ouaddaï which led to the suspension of the head of Bredjing camp, Dahiya Ismail, for one month and continued the dialogue on the issue of reclassifying cards between sheikhs and donor organisations.
He said that on Sunday a number of refugees then attacked the homes of the sheikhs and head of Bredjing camp and broke in after hearing rumours that they agreed to a visit of a Sudanese government delegation to the camp.
He said the assault on houses prompted the camp head and a number of sheikhs to go to the protection centre of the Chadian camp, which they sought protection.
He said that on Monday morning the security forces in turn arrested a refugee named Gamar on suspicion of leading the assault on the homes of the sheikhs on Sunday evening.
As a result, hundreds of refugees gathered and attacked the centre of the camp protection force, which forced them to withdraw for a small number of personnel.
He said that the attackers set fire to the office and forced the sheikhs and the head of the camp to leave the centre, and then the crowd beat them with sticks and stabbed them with knives, killing Sheikh Bahreldin Osman instantly and injuring 22 others. He pointed out that there were a number of people who were transferred to Abeche Hospital some of whom died on the way, including Dahya Ismail, the head of the camp, educational supervisor Abubaker Zakariya, and sheikhs Idris Khamis, Abubaker Abdelkarim while there are still 17 injured being treated, six of them in Abeche and 11 in Hajar Hadid.
He described the situation in the camp as calm after the presence of the security forces and Chadian police, which began to prosecute the accused.
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