A woman was killed and a child lost both of his legs in the blast from a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG)* – part of a barrage fired from the headquarters of the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) based in Deribat in Darfur’s East Jebel Marra on Monday night.

One of the victims’ family members told Radio Dabanga that the dead woman, Hawa Yahya Suleiman, fled with others to the mountains after the government forces attacked Sawani village two weeks ago.

He said that she and her 12-year-old son Ayoub Husein were sleeping rough in the mountains when they were hit by a shell coming from government forces at 9:00 pm on Monday night. Hawa died instantly and Ayoub lost both legs.

He said government forces might have seen the light from a battery flashlight at night, to which they responded by strafing the area and firing a barrage of bombs in that direction that continued for about half an hour.

He condemned the shelling as an atrocity, as there are no legitimate military targets, only civilians taking refuge in the mountain caves.

An estimated 50,000 people displaced by recent fighting between government troops and rebels in Darfur’s Jebel Marra, are reportedly taking refuge in mountain caves in the Libei area.

Last week, voluntary work activists estimated the number of those fleeing their villages in the eastern areas of Jebel Marra after the government attacks at about 50,000. Activists told Radio Dabanga that these civilians have been displaced from the areas of Sawani, Terongafogi, Owru, and Rokona after the government attack and the battles with the Sudan Liberation Movement led by Abdelwahid El Nur (SLM-AW).

Activists said the civilians in the caves are sleeping on stones with no water or food.

* The RPG-7 (Russian: РПГ-7) is a portable, reusable, unguided, shoulder-launched, anti-tank rocket-propelled grenade launcher. Originally the RPG-7 (Ручной Противотанковый Гранатомёт – Ruchnoy Protivotankoviy Granatomyot – Hand-held anti-tank grenade launcher) was designed by the former Soviet Union.The ruggedness, simplicity, low cost, and effectiveness of the RPG-7 has made it the most widely used anti-armor weapon in the world, and decades of conflict has left sub-Saharan Africa awash with such weapons. (Source: Wikipedia)