Tag Archives: Darfur

Breaking: Sudan govt signs peace deal with Darfur Rebels.

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Agreement provides for the dismantling of rebel forces and integration of their fighters into the national army.


Sudan’s government and the main rebel alliance agreed on a peace deal on Monday to end 17 years of conflict.

The Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF), a coalition of rebel groups from the western region of Darfur and the southern states of South Kordofan and Blue Nile, signed the peace agreement at a ceremony in Juba, capital of neighbouring South Sudan, which has hosted and helped mediate the long-running talks since late 2019.

The final agreement covers key issues around security, land ownership, transitional justice, power sharing, and the return of people who fled their homes because of war.

It also provides for the dismantling of rebel forces and the integration of their fighters into the national army.

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The deal is a significant step in the transitional leadership’s goal of resolving multiple, deep-rooted civil conflicts.

About 300,000 people have been killed in Darfur since rebels took up arms there in 2003, according to the United Nations.

Conflict in South Kordofan and Blue Nile erupted in 2011, following unresolved issues from bitter fighting there in Sudan’s 1983-2005 civil war.

Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and several ministers flew to Juba on Sunday, the official news agency SUNA reported, where he met South Sudan President Salva Kiir.

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Hamdok said finding a deal had taken longer than first hoped after an initial agreement in September 2019.

The rebel forces took up arms against what they said was the economic and political marginalisation by the government in Khartoum.

They are largely drawn from non-Arab minority groups that long railed against Arab domination of successive governments in Khartoum, including that of toppled strongman, Omar al-Bashir.

The rebel groups that signed the agreement include the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) and Minni Minawi’s Sudan Liberation Army (SLA), both of the western region of Darfur, and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) led by Malik Agar, present in South Kordofan and Blue Nile.


#Newsworthy…

Just in: Sudan to send troops into Darfur amid fresh killings

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United Nations officials reported a fresh massacre of more than 60 people in Sudan’s West Darfur, as the country’s prime minister promised fresh troops for the conflict-stricken region.

Attackers targeted members of the local Masalit community, looting and burning houses and part of the local market, a statement said.

Around 500 armed men attacked Masteri Town, north of Beida, in Darfur on Saturday afternoon, said the Sunday statement from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

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“This was one of the latest of a series of security incidents reported over the last week that left several villages and houses burned, markets and shops looted, and infrastructure damaged,” said the statement, from the OCHA’s Khartoum office.

Following Saturday’s attack on Masteri, around 500 local people staged a protest demanding more protection from the authorities.

On Sunday, Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok said the government would send security forces to conflict-stricken Darfur to “protect citizens and the farming season.”

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The force will include army and police, he said in a statement after he met a delegation of women from the region.

Land conflict
On Friday, armed men drove into a village and killed 20 civilians returning to their fields for the first time in years, an eyewitness and a tribal chief told Media (known to Noble Reporters Media).

Darfur has been devastated since 2003 by a conflict between ethnic minority rebels and forces loyal to now ousted president Omar al-Bashir, including the feared Janjaweed militia, mainly recruited from Arab pastoralist tribes.

West Darfur State is one of the states of Sudan, and one of five comprising the Darfur region.
West Darfur State is one of the states of Sudan, and one of five comprising the Darfur region.

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A government scorched-earth campaign to crush the rebels left 300,000 people dead and displaced 2.5 million.

Violence in Darfur has eased since Bashir’s ouster by the army amid mass protests against his rule last year.

File photo of Sudanese members of the Rapid Support Forces, a paramilitary force backed by the Sudanese government to fight rebels in 2017. AFP PHOTO / ASHRAF SHAZLY

The government and a coalition of nine rebel groups, including factions from the region, signed a preliminary peace deal in January.

Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court over charges of genocide and crimes against humanity in the conflict.

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Farmers displaced by the fighting had since started to return to their land under a government-sponsored deal reached two months ago, in time for the July-November planting season.

But the bloodshed has continued, particularly over land rights, according to expert Adam Mohammad.

“The question of land is one cause of the conflict,” he said.

“During the war, peasants fled their lands and villages to camps, and nomads replaced them and settled there.”

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Harvests threatened
The recent killings have targeted the African farming communities in conflict with the nomadic Arab tribes over the land.

In late June and early July, hundreds of protesters camped for days outside a government building in the Central Darfur town of Nertiti to demand that the government beef up security after multiple killings and looting incidents on farmland and properties.

After Saturday’s attack on Masteri, around 500 local people staged their own protest demanding more protection.

“The escalation of violence in different parts of Darfur region is leading to increased displacement, compromising the agricultural season, causing loss of lives and livelihoods and driving growing humanitarian needs,” said the OCHA statement.


#Newsworthy…