Armed shepherds attack farmers in Darfur Region, West Sudan, killing 1 farmer and injuring 6, including 1 woman and a Policeman.

Armed shepherds attack farmers in Darfur Region, West Sudan, killing 1 farmer and injuring 6, including 1 woman and a Policeman.

On November 15, 2020 at around 7 a.m., in Habila locality-El-Geneina, West Darfur Region, armed shepherds killed one farmer and injured three others including a policeman during clashes between shepherds and the police. The incident occurred following complaints from farmers about the deliberate release of camels onto their farms, by armed shepherds.

Witnesses reported that four armed shepherds belonging to the Arab Mahariya tribe were riding on motorcycles and drove their camels into the farms which are located about 2km east of Habila locality. The farmers found the camels feeding on their crops and took the camels to the cattle fence in Habila locality in order report the incident to authorities and claim compensation for losses from the camels’ owners.

In defiance of the law, the armed shepherds fired on the farmers, killing one and injured three others. Witnesses reported that the Police rescue team came under attack by the shepherds and in the ensuing clash, one policeman and one shepherd were injured. The police managed to arrest the perpetrators and took them to Habila police for preliminary investigations.

Name of the farmer killed:

1- Osman Arbab.

Names of the people injured: –

2- Adam Abdullah

3- Moon Abdullah

4- Muhammad Abdul Karim

The following were arrested by the police:

1- Osman Hamid Muhammad, 19 years old

2- Hamed Muhammad Abdullaziz, aged 35

3- Jama Mohammed Abdulaziz, aged 50

In a related incident on November 17, 2020, armed shepherds in South Darfur shot randomly at farmers north of Duma locality, injuring two of them. This incident stemmed from the refusal by farmers to allow the shepherds camels released to graze on crops in several farms in the locality.   The citizens of Duma area have stated that they hold the Government in Duma locality responsible for the incident because they never took the necessary steps to protect the community and prevent such incidents from occurring. They also expressed doubts in Government’s commitment and capacity to take action as several similar incidents have previously been reported to authorities without any action being taken.

Names of those injured:

1- Naser Adam Adam, 30 years old whose leg was broken

2- Mrs. Fatima Ibrahim Teyrab, 26 old who was shot on her foot.

During this rainy season, the Habila locality has witnessed several incidents in which shepherds deliberately direct their camels into farmlands, destroying the crops.  Furthermore, many women and men are assaulted daily by armed militias.

DNMD, appeals to authorities in South and West Darfur to take concrete actions to stop such incidents by armed shepherds and attacks against the personal integrity of the farmers. DNMD also repeat calls to the Transitional Government of Sudan and the Sudanese Revolutionary Front for the disarmament of armed individuals, especially the pastoralists, in order to begin working towards achieving durable solutions for security and peace in the Darfur region.

DNMD is enormously troubled about the impending removal of UNAMID peacekeeping troops from Darfur at end of December 2020. We remain concerned that the government-led security forces are not fully capable of protecting civilians from ongoing human rights abuses, including by armed shepherds. We further note, with concern, that some members of the security apparatus remain partisan along tribal lines, a situation which will further exacerbate improvement of the overall security situation and implementation of durable solutions in Darfur.  It is our hope at DNMD, that the newly signed Peace Agreement between the Government and the Sudanese Revolutionary Front will result in enhanced security as well as sustainable peace and justice in the Darfur region.

 

 

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