27 June 2013

Al Sareif Beni Hussein — Reports from Al Sareif Beni Hussein in North Darfur say that the town is still besieged by Abbala tribesmen. Local sources claimed finding a mass grave in Al Sareif Beni Hussein city on Thursday containing “62 bodies of members of the Beni Hussein tribe”.

The sources said the Beni Hussein were killed “in an ambush by Abbala in an area four kilometers north of Al Sareif city.” They added the Abbala stole “between 3,000 and 4,000 head of cattle” On the same occasion.

Representatives of Unamid, who according to sources have documented the recent incidents in the area, said that 24 wounded arrived at the hospital of Al Sareif, while more than 20 people from the Beni Hussein tribe are still missing.

Speaking to Radio Dabanga from Al Sareif, a source said “all the roads leading to the town are completely closed while an atmosphere of sadness, wariness and anticipation of renewed clashes hangs over the region,” according to witnesses who spoke to Radio Dabanga.

“Chadian Arabs”

Beni Hussein leader Al Nour Sayer Mohamed told Radio Dabanga from Al Sareif that “the Abbala invited groups of Chadian Arabs on more than 75 vehicles and horses to attack the Beni Hussein north of Al Sareif, killing a large number, and looting of thousands of livestock”.

Sayer said that bodies of the dead are still on the battlefield and there are others who are wounded or missing following the clashes that broke out on Wednesday, but said that the estimate of the actual number of casualties is still ongoing.

The omda of Al Sareif, Omar Abdullah Al Nour, appealed to the government via Radio Dabanga to “immediately intervene, impose its authority and resolve the situation. The security of citizens is the responsibility of the state,” he said.

“The government is conspicuously absent at a time when Abbala soldiers affiliated to the government are using government weapons and vehicles in their attacks.”

In an interview with Radio Dabanga, the omda described the situation in Al Sareif Beni Hussein locality as tense. “Abbala are approaching from all directions to attack the city of Al Sareif,” he said. “It is the duty of the state to impost its presence before it’s too late.”

The omda appealed to all the people of Darfur who are fighting among themselves “to fear God and ask themselves who the beneficiary is and who is behind it? What is happening now in Darfur is very serious and requires all the sons of Darfur to act and use their brains”.

He suggested that villages and the country-side of Darfur are being torched and destroyed, and “maybe soon everyone will have moved to cities because there are no more villages.”

Afflicted citizens of Al Sareif appealed to the government to intervene and protect Sudanese civilians. The Beni Hussein leader told Radio Dabanga: “if the government consider us to be people of Sudan then we Sudanese are supposed to receive protection and security.”

He appealed to the United Nations and the Security Council to immediately intervene. “Al Sareif is in urgent and immediate need of aid,” he said.

Saraf Omra:

In the nearby town of Saraf Omra, the market was closed on Thursday after the arrival of “a large number of four-wheel-drive vehicles belonging to the Abbala,” witnesses said.

Due to “fear and tension that currently prevails in the region” because of the Abbala-Beni Hussein conflicts, citizens and traders are said to have “rushed to shut down the market the moment the Abbala entered the city.”

Witnesses said that the “Abbala militias did not want anything to do with the market and its shops”, saying that their “many vehicles were just parked around the market.”

The Abbala and Beni Hussein tribes fought violently earlier this year over control of the Jebel ‘Amer gold mine in Al Sareif Beni Hussein locality, leaving at least 500 people killed. The UN estimates that more than 100,000 people were displaced.

Source: allAfrica.

Link: http://allafrica.com/stories/201306280230.html?viewall=1.