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Video: women and girls say were gang-raped in Golo, Darfur

June 9 - 2015 GOLO
Photo: Dr. Lin Piwowarczyk/PHR
Women returning from the market (file photo).
Photo: Dr. Lin Piwowarczyk/PHR Women returning from the market (file photo).

Dozens of women and girls claim they were gang-raped by Sudanese government forces in Golo, Central Darfur. Golo is located west of the Jebel Marra mountains, an isolated area, preventing victims to receive medical treatment. A video initially posted on 4 June contains the witness accounts.

Khadija is one of the women and girls France24 met who claim they were gang-raped when government-backed forces entered the town of Golo. Scattered around a mountain side, they all told similar stories. Troops passed by their homes, often violating them often in front of the rest of their families.

Khadija sleeps now out in the open with her ten children: “The children were with me. One man was aiming his gun at me when another man beat and raped me. My husband was beaten and held at gunpoint nearby.”

Few of the women have received medical treatment because the [Jebel] Marra mountains are so cut off due to the government blocking access for NGOs.

Munira is another alleged victim. She says her 11-year old daughter, Moasa, was also raped when militiamen invaded their home. So brutal was the experience that Manira thinks she broke her rib was not sure whether her unborn baby was still alive.

"The men asked after they raped us: 'don't you think Arabs are strong?' I was raped on the bed and my daughter was raped on the ground.” Most victims appear to have been raped in their homes. Some tried to seek sanctuary at the mosque, but further atrocities even took place there, including against very young girls, according to another alleged rape victim, Sulamein.

“Some people called for help. The attackers went and held the men at gunpoint. They took the girl in a nearby hut, used as a kitchen for the mosque, and raped her. When they finished the rape, they dragged the girl from the hut. She was screaming. And they they stuffed a piece of cloth in her mouth (like this) the girl was chocked, and she could not scream. By then many people had fled the mosque.”

Sulamein's testimony of further rape taking place at the mosque, including that of a young girl, has been corroborated by other alleged victims, France24 spoke to. The government says all these allegations of rape in the area of Golo are false, because Sudan's military forces protect civilians and do not rape women.

(Source: France24 – Reporting by Adriane Ohanesian and Klaas van Dijken)

Tabit

Radio Dabanga reported on 2 November last year, that army troops conducted house-to-house searches in the village, robbed the residents of their belongings, severely beat them, and raped women and girls.

During the two nights, the soldiers detained the men of Tabit en masse, threatened and abused them throughout the nights, while others continued raping. At least 221 women and girls were allegedly raped in Tabit over a 36-hour period.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) described the situation in Tabit, in a report issued on 11 February 2015, as being like “living in an open prison”. Since the attacks, Sudanese government officials, military commanders, and traditional leaders have threatened, intimidated, beaten, detained, and tortured residents of Tabit to prevent them from speaking out, the report stated.

See also: Human rights investigations: 'Sudan army ordered mass rape Darfur'


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