News24

Sudan: 2 killed in clashes with cops

2011-09-22 09:14

Khartoum - Two protesters were killed on Wednesday in clashes with the police in Sudan's eastern town of Gedaref, the interior ministry said, after the authorities ordered the removal of cow sheds within the town.

The incident occurred in the Al-Sawfa area of Gedaref, when the municipal police went to remove the cow shelters on the orders of the local authorities, the ministry said in a statement, without giving a reason.

"Some of the citizens objected to the implementation of the orders, which led to clashes with the police and resulted in the death of two citizens and one injured policemen," the statement added.

Witnesses in Gedaref confirmed the clashes and said the people involved were all from the Beni Amer branch of the Beja tribe.

The African Beja tribe are traditionally camel-herding nomads, many of whom have migrated to the cities partly due to a succession of severe droughts in the region and competition for grazing pastures.

They represent the largest ethnic minority in resource-rich but neglected east Sudan, and have had a notoriously troubled relationship with Khartoum.

The Beja fought alongside the Rashidiya Arab tribe in their decade-long conflict with the central government, which only ended in 2006, motivated by the perceived marginalisation of their region.