Deadliest month in Darfur since '08

2010-06-07 17:06

Khartoum - Clashes in west Sudan's Darfur region claimed almost 600 lives in May, the highest monthly death toll since peacekeepers were deployed in 2008, according to a UN-AU document seen by AFP.

The confidential document compiled by the joint peacekeeping force said 440 people died in fighting last month between Darfur rebels and government forces, 126 in tribal violence, and 31 in other violence, including murder.

In May, fighting broke out anew between the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), Darfur's main rebel group, and the government after the JEM walked out of peace talks in the Qatari capital Doha.

The UN-AU document did not give a breakdown of the two sides' losses.

The failure of a February agreement between Khartoum and JEM "culminated in military confrontations leaving in its wake the biggest number of fatalities ever recorded in a single month: 597", including the tribal deaths, it said.

Two rival Arab tribes, the Rezeigat and Misseriya, have clashed in Darfur since March.