A UN spokesperson revealed that the organization is currently verifying credible reports it has received of widespread violence against members of the Masalit community in Darfur, particularly in the El Geneina area.
On the fourth of November, the Rapid Support announced the control of the headquarters of the 15th Division in El Geneina in West Darfur State – Western Sudan, and there were reports of its forces committing grave violations against civilians and many crimes.
The army and the RSF have been fighting fierce battles in the capital, Khartoum, and other areas since mid-April, and the militia, led by former deputy chairman of the Sovereignty Council, Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo “Hemedti”, recently expanded its operations in the Darfur region and Kordofan states.
UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said the violence was allegedly committed by Arab militia groups with possible complicity by the RSF between 4 and 6 November.
He added, in his daily press conference, Tuesday, that these acts included “the targeted killing of Masalit men and women, inhuman and degrading treatment, and the forced expulsion of Masalit communities who previously sought safety inside the Ardamta neighborhood of El Geneina and surrounding areas.”
Dujarric also pointed to reports that “members of the Masalit militia targeted some members of the Arab community in El Geneina”.
These developments “unfortunately point to the escalation of ethnic tensions and tribal conflicts in Sudan”, he said.
The UN spokesman urged all parties to the conflict to uphold their obligations under international humanitarian law and fulfil their duty to protect all civilians in areas under their control. “This includes the implementation of the Declaration of Commitment to Protect Sudanese Civilians, signed on 11 May in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia,” he said.
Commenting on these developments, the UN Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, Alice Ndiritto, said it was imperative that the world pay attention and respond to these events, “and that Sudan does not become a forgotten crisis.”