Attacks on peacekeeping staff, carjacking, other banditry and harassment of civilians continue to proliferate in Darfur, the African Union-United Nations mission in the strife-torn region of Sudan (UNAMID) reported on Thursday.
A UNAMID vehicle was carjacked in Nyala, South Darfur, on Wednesday by armed men in military uniforms, and on Monday, two of the mission’s national staff members were stopped while they were driving a UN vehicle and later beaten by five armed men dressed in civilian clothes in El Geneina, West Darfur.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon has condemned an ambush that led to the death of a blue helmet, the second attack on a peacekeeping patrol in the region in a little over a week, and said he was “deeply concerned by the increased security threats faced by UNAMID in Darfur.”
At the same time, concern continues to mount over the safety of humanitarian workers, many of whom have been ordered to leave the region following the recent indictment of Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir by the International Criminal Court for alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in Darfur.
Meanwhile, the number of internally displaced persons (IDP) fleeing violence and harassment continues to grow, with new arrivals in the Zam Zam camp in North Darfur pushing the total in the camp to 80,000.
An estimated 300,000 people have died and another three million have been displaced in Darfur, where rebels have been fighting Government forces and allied Arab militiamen, known as the Janjaweed, since 2003.