Sudan’s Second Vice-President Hasabo Abdelrahman said that the proliferation of weapons has become a threat to national security. He was speaking during his tour to the five states of Darfur in preparation of the disarmament campaign announced for this year,
In a meeting with the East Darfur state government and members of the Legislative Council in the capital of Ed Daein, the V-P said the weapons used by the regular forces should also be collected placed in stores. They should only be taken out in emergency and other necessary situations.
He called for the closure of “all crossings in Sudan” in order to prevent the smuggling of weapons and illegal vehicles.
Abdelrahman further told the native administration leaders to stop the formation of local search teams in case of an incident, and ordered the omdas, sharati, and sultans to deliver criminals within their tribes to justice. He emphasised that the federal government will continue to support the maintenance of security and stability in East Darfur.
According to the V-P, the main reason for the decrease of the Sudanese Pound against the US Dollar on the parallel market is the large influx of illegal vehicles into Darfur.
Abdelrahman said that there are about 60,000 unregistered vehicles in the country. He pointed out that there are only 714 licensed cars in Darfur.
In South Darfur, there are about 1,167 unlicensed cars allowed to be legalised. The rest of the vehicles will be confiscated without compensation, he said.
Members of the North Darfur parliament have called on Khartoum to reconsider the confiscation of unlicensed vehicles.
MP Suleiman Mukhtar Mousa said that the government should take into consideration the conditions for the people “who have bought these cars with their own money”.
The leadership of the Darfur Displaced and Refugees Association commented on the disarmament plans by saying that “the people in Darfur do not have weapons and have nothing to do with the killings and thefts in the region”.
“Khartoum knows more than anyone else who owns weapons in Darfur, as the regime itself has armed those who burned villages, raped women, and displaced millions in Darfur,” Abdelrazeg Yousif Suleiman, spokesman for the association, told Radio Dabanga.
He called on the government to acknowledge that its policies are the cause of violence in the region.