Home Africa Over 1,36,000 Displaced By Spread Of War In Southeast Sudan: UN

Over 1,36,000 Displaced By Spread Of War In Southeast Sudan: UN

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Refugees eat food at "Dar Mariam" a Catholic church and school compound in al-Shajara district, where they took shelter, in Khartoum, Sudan, in this undated handout picture. Father Jacob Thelekkadan/Handout via REUTERS.

More than 1,36,000 persons have fled southeastern Sennar state of Sudan since the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces began a series of attacks on towns, according to the United Nations.

This is the latest wave of displacement caused by Sudan’s almost 15-month long war.

They join nearly 10 million people driven from their homes since war broke out between the RSF and the regular army. The war has sparked accusations of “ethnic cleansing” and warnings of famine, mainly in RSF-controlled areas across the country.

On June 24, the RSF began a campaign to seize the city of Sennar, a trading hub, but quickly turned to the smaller towns of Sinjah and al-Dinder.

As a result, civilians fled all these three towns mainly to neighbouring al-Gedaref and Blue Nile states.

The social media showed pictures of people of all age-groups, wading across the Blue Nile.

Activists in both states say there is little shelter or food aid for the incomers.

In Gedaref, they faced an onslaught of heavy rain while stranded in the state capital’s main market. They had no tents or blankets.

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The local resistance committee said this happened after schools that had served as displacement centres were emptied by the government.

The U.N.’s International Organization for Migration said in a statement that since June 24, an estimated total of 1,36,130 people had been displaced in Sennar.

The state was already home to over 2,85,000 people displaced from Khartoum and al-Gezira states. This means that many of those leaving over the last two weeks may have been displaced for the second or third time.

There was also an exodus from villages in Gedaref state, one of several possible targets for the RSF campaign.

Activists said at least 12 persons were killed by artillery fire on a livestock market on Wednesday in the city of al-Fashir.

In this city, there has a month-long fight for control and an exodus towards nearby towns and displacement camps.

(With Inputs From Reuters)