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SUDAN: Fresh violence and looting reported in Darfur

8/17/2005 8:47pm

SUDAN: Fresh violence and looting reported in Darfur

[ This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]


UN envoy to Sudan, Jan Pronk, with African Union troops in Nyala, Darfur.

NAIROBI, 17 Aug 2005 (IRIN) - The UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) on Tuesday said violence in the war-ravaged western Sudanese region of Darfur had continued, with reports over the past week of looting and attacks on internally displaced persons' (IDP) camps.

The mission said a Sudanese government police officer was killed and had his weapon stolen on Thursday by unidentified gunmen while en route to North Darfur's Zam Zam IDP camp.

In South Darfur, it added, armed tribesmen reportedly attacked returnees from South Darfur's Kalma IDP camp in their village of Sarman Jago.

According to the mission, unidentified gunmen had killed four people on Saturday in a village close to Nyala, the capital of South Darfur.

Several reports were also received indicating that banditry and armed attacks on vehicles - UN-hired trucks, as well as vehicles operated by NGOs and commercial enterprises - had continued in the three Darfur states.

UNMIS also reported trucks being hijacked, according to UN News.

In July, the top UN envoy to Sudan, Jan Pronk, reported to the UN Security Council that while violence in the region had gone down significantly compared to a year ago, the monthly number of deaths due to violence was "still high - much too high".

The war in Darfur, which erupted in February 2003, pits Sudanese government troops and allied Arab militia - known as the Janjawid - against rebels fighting to end what they claim is the neglect and oppression of the region's inhabitants by the state.

The UN estimates that over a third of Darfur's total population - more than 2.5 million people, including nearly 1.9 million IDPs - have been affected by the conflict.


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