El-Fasher — Following the abduction of 15 employees of a Chinese company in North Darfur, the state's governor announced plans to increase the security of businesses operating in the area.
Osman Kibir said four different stakeholders would be in charge of protecting the Western Salvation Road section of Umm Kadada in Kuma locality, near El-Fasher.
The stakeholders include the Central Reserve Forces (known as Abu Tira), which according to Kibir will provide direct security to the companies operating on the road.
He noted these forces would be supported by troops of other localities through security committees, forming the second axis. The governor added that all protection resources would be available to the Abu Tira.
The third group includes a belt of native administrators and community security committees.
Kibir said the fourth group would comprise parties stationed in different locations and that would mediate with other forces.
Chinese companies operating on the Umm Kadada - El-Fasher road confirmed their projects will be ready by the end of this year.
The governor announced he will hold a meeting in El-Fasher on Thursday between the Chinese companies and state authorities to coordinate and assign the road security operations.
An unidentified armed group kidnapped 15 employees of a poly Chinese company for bridges and roads working on the Western Salvation Road on 12 January, Radio Dabanga reported.
Kuma locality's commissioner had announced that four of the kidnapped employees were Chinese nationals and the other 11 were Sudanese.
Four days later the Chinese workers were released and handed over to UNAMID forces.
The commissioner said the Sudanese remained in custody and that three suspects had been arrested in connection with the abduction.