Sudan: At least 17 people killed, dozens injured in tribal clashes in Darfur

At least 17 people have been killed and dozens injured in renewed violence in West Darfur, Sudan.

Sharaf Jumma Salah, a West Darfur resident and activist, said tribal clashes between Arabs and non-Arabs left at least 46 people injured, and that dozens of houses in four villages had been burnt down in the area of Jebel Moon.

Fighting earlier this week also killed at least 16, in the same area.

Adam Regal, spokesman for the General Coordination Body for Refugees and Displaced in Darfur, said on Thursday that the violence started that morning and went on for hours. He said a communications cut had made it difficult to obtain complete information from the remote area.

Regal blamed local Arab tribal militias known as janjaweed for the attack.

Clashes in Jebel Moon erupted in mid-November over a land dispute between Arab and non-Arab tribes. Dozens have been killed since then and authorities have deployed more troops to the area. Sporadic fighting has continued, however.

Sudan has seen unrest following an October military coup that rattled an already fragile democratic transition. The African country has also faced uphill security and economic challenges since the 2019 overthrow of longtime autocrat Omar al-Bashir and his Islamist government.

The yearslong Darfur conflict broke out when rebels from the territory’s ethnic central and sub-Saharan African community launched an insurgency in 2003, complaining of oppression by the Arab-dominated government in Khartoum.

Al-Bashir’s government responded with a campaign of aerial bombings and raids by the janjaweed, a militia that has been accused of mass killings and rapes. Up to 300,000 people were killed and 2.7 million were driven from their homes in Darfur over the years.