27 January 2013

Sudan Army Withdraws From Gold Mine Area of Jebel 'Amer

Photo: MiaFarrow
Women and children in Jebel Marra (file photo).

Kabkabiya — The Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) withdrew on Sunday from the gold mine area of Jebel 'Amer in North Darfur, where the tribal clashes between the Beni Hussein and Abbala tribes began weeks ago.

An anonymous security source told Radio Dabanga the army commander of the Kabkabiya garrison ordered the SAF troops to withdraw "in order to avoid confrontation with Abbala militias (Abu Tira and border guards)".

SAF troops stationed in Jebel 'Amer are "fed-up with the harassment and provocation" by the Abbala militias, which occur especially around the busy water wells.

The forces, along with 33 vehicles that include carriers, Land Cruisers, and tankers for water and fuel, will return to the Kabkabiya headquarters.

Several Abbala men remain in Jebel 'Amer and continue extracting gold, the security source announced.

He pointed out that Abbala and Beni Hussein leaders have signed a cease-fire agreement stating that the warring parties could not work at the mine until security arrangements are made.

North Darfur's government, in coordination with the commander of El-Fasher garrison, deployed 24 vehicles to Jebel 'Amer after the cease-fire agreement was signed.

The role of the extra forces was to ensure the agreement was correctly implemented and to provide support to the Kabkabiya SAF headquarters that counted nine vehicles.

The El-Fasher garrison commander reportedly controls all troops in North Darfur.

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