Escalating Unrest and Attacks on Civilians in North Darfur
10, 000 civilians forcefully displaced from two different localities. On February 20, 2020, Radio Dabanga released a report by Sudan’s Humanitarian Aid Commission identifying two separate violent incidence that occurred in North Darfur this past week. Unrest along the Sudan-Chad border displaced upwards of 3,000 families into and around the locality of El Tina. Of the displaced include both Chadian nationals and Sudanese refugees who had originally fled the country due to previous border conflicts. A parallel incident of recurrent violence between farmers and herders of Kabkabiya locality caused nearly 7,000 families to move to Sortony refugee camp for fear of their safety. The cumulative 10,000 refugee families created this week thus presents a serious matter of human security and refugee accommodation in North Darfur. The Interim Government of Sudan must take concerted action to ensure civilian protection across Darfur.
Neither attacks should have taken the interim government of Sudan by surprise. In 2016, the Commissioner of El Tina locality decried the situation on the Chad-Sudan border as lacking in both security and public service provision. Commissioner Omar Mansour Dosa’s description of the situation implied that residents on the border were caught between deliberate efforts toward eviction from Chad and constant lawlessness in Sudan. Moreover, violence along the Chad-Sudan border extends to affect West Darfur as well. The end of December massacre in and around El Geneina, which DWAG strongly condemned, also forced Sudanese refugees to flee into Chad. Violence will only continue to threaten some of Darfur’s most vulnerable populations if this border is not properly secured.
Attacks against farmers by uniform herders in Kabkabiya locality, as well as in North Darfur as a whole, have been a recurrent trend of violence. It is quite disturbing that, even after Bashir’s deposal, that these kind of violent attacks on civilian within a month in Kabkabiya itself. This is not to mention the spree of killings, maiming’s, and incidents of sexual violence throughout the entirety of North Darfur. Most recently, on January 1st, 2020, the village of Terinja was fully plundered by armed herdsmen and 70 families fled to Sortony refugee camp. Such ample precedent for the conflict last week gives the interim government of Sudan no excuse for its inaction. It is also worth noting that the so-called Herders are uniformed Rapid Support forces created from Arabs tribes by al-Bashir regime and their actions are still systematic and not as random as they may seem.
Darfur Women Action Group strongly condemn these heinous crimes taking place in Kabkabiya locality and denounce the interim government’s silence and complicity and lack of action to provide security needed or deter attacks on civilians. DWAG strongly recommends the following actions be implemented:
The interim government’s failure to yet satisfy these demands means that North Darfur has not been the recipient of peace and justice in Sudan’s transition away from Bashir’s regime. DWAG calls for immediate action to hold the interim government accountable in response to such shortcomings.
We must stand vigilant and maintain attention on the vulnerable while speaking up to hold policy makers accountable for their inaction.