Khartoum — A Darfur rebel group claimed killing 17 soldiers of the Sudanese army in clashes that took place in eastern Jebel Marra on Saturday.
The Sudan Liberation Movement-Juba Unity (SLM-Juba) led by Ahmed Abdel-Shafi said it had repelled an attack by the Sudanese army five kilometers outside Al-Aradeeb Al-Ashara in North Darfur on Saturday 7.30 am.
Abdel Shafi said in a statement extended to Sudan Tribune they intercepted a Sudanese army force composed of 17 vehicles that was heading to the positions of his group to free six prisoners of war they had captured on 17 February.
In this operation of Saturday morning "our forces killed 17 soldiers, destroyed 9 vehicles and seized 4 Land Cruiser vehicles equipped with Doshk machineguns", the rebel leader further said.
The statement provided the names of five POWs the group captured after this attack. It further added that two rebel fighters were killed and three others were wounded.
In 2010 Abdel Shafi joined the former rebel Liberation and Justice Movement which signed the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) in July 2011.
But he defected from the group several months letter when he left to Washington in November of the same year.
At the time he stated that Khartoum decision to start armed conflicts in the country's border regions of South Kordofan and Blue Nile states "obliged him to reconsider the peace process and choose between taking the side of the Sudanese people or that of the ruling regime."