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Sudan government militias attack Darfur camps in Kass, kills three

February 10 - 2010 KASS
Militiamen in Darfur (file photo)
Militiamen in Darfur (file photo)

(By Radio Dabanga)

The governor of South Darfur has established two committees. One for assisting the people with their losses after the atacks on Kass IDP camps and a second with a juridical task and responsible for the security and paying blood money. The governor said there are at least three soldier killed and two students. He added he had made all security measures to define protect IDPs. He will not allow a new attack.

IDPs are afraid of new attacks from pro-government militia after one day of the last attack. They say the militia want to attack the camp again and their aim is to withdraw all IDPs from the camps. One IDP have told Radio Dabanga that schools have been closed because of the fear.

KASS (9 Feb) – Today (Tuesday), government-backed militias in Kass (South Darfur) have attacked two different camps of internally displaced people. Three people were confirmed dead, and two Fur sheikhs, Musa Tingil and Musa Dakka, were arrested amongst 40 other residents. The Border Guards set Yahya Haggar camp and the Janubia market ablaze, while Bitari camp was partly destroyed. 

Radio Dabanga recorded this morning intense cross fire and provided witness reports. The Central Reserve Police from Nyala rushed this morning to calm the situation, but until noon the shootings continued. According to the residents, an uniformed policeman or soldier was found dead nearby one of the camps on Monday. It was not confirmed whether he was a member of a government-backed militia or the Border Intelligence Guards. The militias started their siege of the camps this morning (Tuesday) immediately after sunrise. They entered the camps of Yahya Haggar and Bitari and also the market of Janubia for large scale looting, including burning of houses and shops. 

The local government could not be reached for comment at the moment. The former Janjaweed have been integrated in the Border Guards, a military unit of the Sudanese Armed Forces.  It is still unclear whether the government militia involved has already been formally integrated in the structrues of the Border Guards, or had just received arms and uniforms. 

The Central Reserve Police is another military unit initially meant to protect the borders of Khartoum State. It is part of the national armed forces with headquarters near Jebel Aulia, south of Khartoum. Kass has been recently the scene of several armed clashes. Several months ago masked gunmen killed two Sudanese policemen guarding a guesthouse run by the UN World Food Programme (WFP). While tracking down the potential attackers, a third police officer was killed and two of the alleged attackers were killed in an exchange of fire. There is a large presence of UNAMID peacekeepers in Kass.


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