Darfur catastrophe unfolding

2014-03-24 20:38
Sudanese women and children rest under shelter at the Kalma refugee camp for internally displaced people, south of the Darfur town of Nyala, Sudan. (Albert Gonzalez Farran, AP, Unamid)

Sudanese women and children rest under shelter at the Kalma refugee camp for internally displaced people, south of the Darfur town of Nyala, Sudan. (Albert Gonzalez Farran, AP, Unamid)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Khartoum - Recent unrest and a soaring number of displaced has evoked comparisons with the early stages of war in Darfur, which captured the world's attention more than a decade ago.

"The situation in Darfur is beginning to deteriorate for the worse, and has gone back to the days of deepening crisis 10 years ago, and even surpassing it," veteran columnist Mahjoub Mohamed Salih wrote in Monday's The Citizen.

Events in the region "are heading towards catastrophic results" without a quick correction, he said.

Gunmen have attacked and burned a camp for displaced people in Sudan's Darfur region, peacekeepers said on Monday, adding to an upsurge of suspected militia violence which has wreaked havoc.

The African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur (Unamid) has reported a series of attacks on villages in the region this month, but the Khor Abeche camp in South Darfur, assaulted on Saturday, was an unusual target.

Unamid said in a statement that about 300 heavily armed men attacked the camp, "setting fire to dozens of shelters and stealing livestock belonging to the residents".

About 3 000 sought refuge at the nearby Unamid base but one person who could not flee apparently died in the blaze, Unamid said.

The attack occurred about 75km northeast of the South Darfur state capital Nyala.

On the same day hundreds of families approached another Unamid base, in Korma North Darfur, reporting that nearby Kobe town had been attacked.

"One fatality was reported, alongside the looting of property and burning of houses," said Unamid, which deployed additional peacekeepers after about 1 000 people sought safety at their compound.

Korma is northwest of El Fasher, the state capital.

Local sources said militiamen were suspected in the latest attacks.

Out of control

Rebels from Darfur's black tribes rose up in 2003 seeking an end to what they said was the domination of Sudan's power and wealth by Arab elites.

In response, government-backed Janjaweed, recruited among the region's Arab tribes, shocked the world with atrocities against civilians.

Over the past two years, Sudan's deteriorating economy has led to worsening crime and intercommunal clashes, a February report by UN chief Ban Ki-moon said.

It added that some cash-poor paramilitaries have joined the tribal fighting over gold and other resources.

Analysts say the government can no longer control its former Arab tribal allies, whom it armed against the insurgents.

"The situation is compounded by the conflicts between groups affiliated to the ruling party," columnist Salih wrote, referring to a dispute between North Darfur governor Osman Kbir and Musa Hilal, who was reputed to be a Janjaweed leader and later became an adviser to the federal affairs ministry.

The UN said an estimated 65 000 people fled their homes around Saraf Omra town, in western North Darfur earlier this month, after clashes between government forces and paramilitaries led by Hilal.

Half a million

Most of those forced to flee Saraf Omra have since returned home.

They were among roughly 215 000 whom the UN says have been uprooted this year by fighting in Darfur.

That is on top of at least 380 000 people displaced last year, a higher number than in any single year since the peak of the conflict in 2004.

"More than at any point since the Darfur crisis started a decade ago, the people of Darfur need the immediate support of the humanitarian community," the UN's chief in Sudan, Ali Al-Za'tari, said in a statement on Sunday.

A humanitarian crisis in Sudan is the result of continuous war, especially in Darfur, the pro-government Sudan Vision daily said in a weekend editorial.

It warned that perpetuation of armed conflict "will lead at the end to the collapse of the state".

Read more on:    unamid  |  ban ki-moon  |  sudan  |  east africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
2 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
SPONSORED CONTENT
When is a mountain more than just a mountain? 2014-12-18 07:26

When it’s an adventure! A group of Old Mutual employees found out how much is enough courage, endurance and camaraderie to take on Africa's highest peak.

/News
 

This is what South Africans Googled in 2014!

Find out who and what South Africans were most curious about in 2014!

 
 

I love summer.24

This hilarious song is your new holiday anthem
The world's least visited destination is breathtaking!
LOL treadmill fail!
Google’s top searches of 2014

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Any chance to explore the distant shores of things yet to be found will fascinate you. The challenge is dealing with the issues...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.