Ethnic violence ‘kills 100’ in Sudan’s Darfur

Ethnic violence ‘kills 100’ in Sudan’s Darfur

Heavy fighting in a border region of Sudan’s Darfur has killed 100 people, state radio reported on Saturday, while another source said Chadian soldiers were among the recent dead.


“The number of casualties has grown to 100” after battles between the Misseriya and Salamat tribes, Radio Omdurman said in a brief bulletin sent by SMS.

The dispatch did not say what period its toll covered, but intense battles between the two groups have flared again in southwestern Darfur.

Radio Omdurman said fighting had stopped but a Misseriya leader told AFP battles continued on Saturday around southwest Darfur’s Umm Dukhun town, with more than 50 killed on both sides.

Chadian troops in a joint force with Sudan were among those killed in recent fighting, a humanitarian source said on Saturday.

The source did not know how many Chadians died in Thursday’s fighting with Salamat tribesmen around Umm Dukhun, on the border with Chad.

Soldiers from Chad and Sudan have co-operated to jointly patrol their border region since ties between the two countries began to improve in 2010.

Off-and-on clashes between the Salamat and a rival Arab tribe, the Misseriya, had already killed more than 200 people since April in southwestern Darfur.

In Thursday’s incident, the Salamat attacked Umm Dukhun and a camp for displaced people on its outskirts, in what the source called a “big battle”.

“They were eventually repulsed by the mixed Chad-Sudan forces, and pushed into Chad where the forces chased them for a while,” the source said.

During the pursuit some of the Chadians were killed, “most likely inside Chadian territory”, the source said, adding that Salamat casualties were apparently heavy.

Tribal violence and rebel-government battles have displaced at least 460,000 people in Sudan’s Darfur this year, the United Nations said on Thursday.

And Defence Minister Abdelrahim Mohammed Hussein said last week that violence between the various tribes had eclipsed rebel activity as Darfur’s main security threat.