Sudan: Deadly battles occur at peace-keeping facilities in Darfur

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Sudan SudanFollowing theft and violence that forced the UN’s World Food Programme to temporarily cease its activities in the region, Sudan’s military officials warned on Wednesday that the parties that signed the accord would have to depart cities in Darfur.

An unknown number of persons were killed and injured in clashes between military troops and armed groups at the sites of a previous international peacekeeping operation in Sudan’s Darfur area on Saturday, according to a military statement. Witnesses told Reuters that heavy gunfire could be heard outside the perimeter of the former African Union-United Nations peacekeeping operation UNAMID’s headquarters in El Fasher, North Darfur, on Saturday, but that the number of victims remained unknown.

Since 2020, there has been an uptick in violence and displacement in Darfur, which commentators attribute to factions jockeying for control in the aftermath of a peace accord reached with some former rebel groups that year and UNAMID’s withdrawal at the start of 2021.

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Following theft and violence that forced the UN’s World Food Programme to temporarily cease its activities in the region, Sudan’s military officials warned on Wednesday that the parties that signed the accord would have to depart cities in Darfur. A national combined force was supposed to replace the UNAMID peacekeepers, but it has yet to be deployed. Former UNAMID installations have been assaulted and robbed on several occasions.

As government forces and associated militias tried to suppress a revolt in Darfur, the conflict erupted in 2003, killing an estimated 300,000 people. In Darfur, 2.5 million people reside in displacement camps.

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