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Supporters of the Doha Agreement targeted by SLA in Darfur

03.10.11

Supporters of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD), signed in July 2011 between the Darfuri Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) and the government of Sudan in Doha, Qatar, have been intimidated and threatened with summary killing by followers of the Sudan Liberation Army led by Abdel Wahed Mohammed Nour (SLA-AW) which opposed the Doha agreement.

The SLA-AW controls Jebel Marra in Darfur. Areas near Jebel Marra, such as Niyertiti and Kalma Camp near Nyala, have been especially targeted. There have been reports of summary killings and abductions of supporters of the Doha Agreement.

On 15 August 2011 a group of nine armed persons, reportedly from the SLA, abducted Omda Tijani Saif Eddin Babiker from his house in Hay El-Omda in Niyertiti. Omda Tijani, who is approximately 65 years of age, went to Doha as part of what was known as the “Stakeholders Conference” which participated in discussions and supported the agreement. Up until the end of September he had not been released.

Upon the arrival of the LJM delegation in Khartoum in September, a campaign started to mobilise Darfurians around the Doha agreement, after which the threats and intimidation against their supporters increased. 

Omda Abdel Karim Abker, a leader in his late 50s, was killed in his house in Niyertiti on Friday, 23 September.  He was reportedly shot with three bullets to the head after he refused to accompany an armed group from SLA-AW away from his home.

Hawa Ansria, in her late 50s, a schoolteacher in the basic school in Niyertiti, who lives in Hay Elshebab quarter in Niyertiti east, was abducted on 23 September by an armed-group of seven persons who came to her house. She is now said to be held in one of SLA camps in Jebel Marra.

The relatives and friends of those abducted are very concerned about their safety and their treatment. Publicly SLA-AW have denied that they abducted people and condemned such incidents, saying that they came to protect the masses and not to abduct or kill them. Privately, SLA commanders contacted by SUDO said that those who had been taken were in good condition; they were only held for some investigations and would be released soon.

Recommendations:

SUDO (UK) condemns abuses of people’s human rights by the Sudan government and by all warring parties.

SUDO (UK) calls on all parties to the conflict to respect international human rights and humanitarian law. Armed movements should not threaten the lives of civilians who stay in the areas they control and they have a duty to observe their rights.

SUDO (UK) calls for the immediate and unconditional release of all those abducted.

SUDO (UK) calls for those who ordered or committed the killings to be brought to justice.

SUDO (UK) calls on the government and armed groups to guarantee freedom of expression to all supporters and opponents of the peace agreements.

SUDO (UK) calls for a mechanism to be set up by UN and African Union for the protection of civilians in areas controlled by armed groups. It calls for an independent and impartial committee of investigation into crimes committed in the areas controlled by the armed groups to be set up by the UN Human Rights Council and the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights, drawing its members from recognized civil society activists.

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