Sudan: 18 people dead in Darfur clashes, says doctors association

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Clashes in Sudan’s Darfur region have left at least 18 people dead and another 54 injured, a local doctors group said on Monday.

The West Darfur Doctors’ Committee said the wounded were receiving attention at Al-Jeneina Teaching Hospital following clashes on Saturday and Sunday, AFP news agency reported, citing a statement.

An eyewitness told AFP that clashes were ongoing on Monday and fighting had spread to the western suburbs of Al-Jeneina, the capital of West Darfur state.

The doctors committee said an ambulance was attacked during the fighting, while hospitals were still receiving patients injured from the violence.

The committee called on the government in Khartoum to take action to help end the fighting, Xinhua news agency reported.

The western Darfur region saw an outbreak of conflict in 2003, with some 300,000 people killed and millions displaced, according to the UN.

The conflict has dissipated in recent years, although inter-communal clashes broke out in January, leaving some 200 people dead.

A joint UN-African Union peacekeeping force in Darfur finished at the end of 2020 and the country’s transitional government has made efforts to make peace with rebel groups, including those in Darfur.

Mustafa Tambour, the leader of a faction of the Sudan Liberation Movement rebel group, went to Khartoum at the weekend following his signature to the Juba peace agreement last year.

Tambour’s arrival in the capital, as reported by Sudan Tribune, is part of an increasing rapprochement between rebels and the Sudanese authorities, despite some rebel groups holding out.

A delegation from the UN Security Council visited North Darfur on 1 April, as part of a trip designed to investigate the situation in the region and address security concerns, Radio Dabanga said.