DWAG writes to express its grave concern and outrage regarding the recent attacks in North, South, and Central Darfur and the shameful silence of the international community in the face of civilians being massacred in Darfur. Between late 2022 and the first 3 weeks of January 2023 alone, several attacks and burnings of villages in Darfur have occurred at a rapid pace. Even so, the international community is still failing to hold the Sudanese government accountable.
Last Friday, an internally displaced person (IDP) was killed by gunmen in Kabkabiya, North Darfur, after they tried to steal his car. Two displaced villagers were wounded by armed robbers west of Kabkabiya, while another was injured in the Sortony camp for the displaced. In addition, two individuals died at the hands of unknown gunmen west of El Fasher on Saturday. Two robberies, as well as three attacks took place in Saraf Omra over the weekend; gunmen hijacked and robbed vehicles, while two were stabbed and one was shot.
In South Darfur, three IDP men were attacked four kilometers from Mershing on Saturday; one of the survivors stated that three armed men intercepted and violently assaulted them, before forcing them to hand over the firewood they had collected at gunpoint. The survivor also claimed that the Mershing IDP camps have recently faced multiple attacks from gunmen. The Darfur Network for Monitoring and Documentation reported an attack by two gunmen in Rapid Support Forces (RSF) uniforms on motorcycle on Saturday, leaving a 75-year-old passenger injured.
In Central Darfur, two gunmen on motorcycle shot a secondary school student in Zalingei. The injured student was transferred to the Zalingei Teaching Hospital.
These recent attacks in Darfur are not isolated incidents, but are the result of government-affiliated militias attempting to implement a systematic and deliberate genocidal policy. These attacks continued because those responsible could continue committing crimes with impunity. In the face of such violence, the international community must act. Thus, DWAG calls on the Biden Administration and the member states of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to take the following actions to defend the people of Darfur from genocidal violence:
As the world watches national negotiations on restoring the civilian government, it must understand that peace and democracy in Sudan cannot exist as long as civilians in Darfur suffer such brutal attacks and those responsible escape justice. Impunity must not be an option.
We call on our supporters to speak up for Darfur and tell their leaders that silence is fatal. We must urge the international community to prioritize civilians and the protection of all forms of human rights violations in Darfur and put an end to impunity for political and ethnically motivated violence. We must continue to demand and pursue accountability. We must speak up and demand an end of the gross human rights violations in Darfur and Sudan. With our collective effort, we can make a difference and end the suffering across Sudan.
Niemat Ahmadi, President and Founder, DWAG