Sudan: Two Killed in Fire Exchange Between Smugglers in the Northern State

Dongola — Yesterday, the Rapporteur of the Northern State Security Committee, Brig Gen Mohamed Ali El Hassan, confirmed in a press statement on Sudan News Agency (SUNA) that two people were killed and six others were injured in a violent incident in the El Gab area, west of Dongola.

This press statement came after a meeting chaired by the wali (governor) of the Northern State Amal Ezzeldin.

The rapporteur explained that the incident took place when two groups of smugglers exchanged fire after one group tried to seize the other group's 'smuggled commodities'.

He also announced arrangements to 'comb' through all the areas in the west of the state in the coming days that have become smuggling routes. He promised to ban smugglers from the state and called on citizens to cooperate with the security services by reporting smuggling gangs and sharing information about their activities.

The Northern State has seen more violent incidents concerning smugglers. In September, five members of the customs police were killed during a clash between weapon smugglers near Ed Debba.

In other areas in Sudan smuggling is also seen as a problem. On Monday, West Darfur wali (governor) Mohamed El Doma said that arms trade, drug trafficking and commodity smuggling are widespread in his state, "both in the cities and in the camps for displaced people".

Last month, North Darfur governor Mohamed Arabi announced that the federal government had agreed to process and register more than 100,000 vehicles that were smuggled illegally into the country.

In August, Sudanese Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok said that the widespread smuggling of goods is the biggest threat to the county's economy. He claimed that 40 per cent of the Sudanese economy is "sabotaged by smuggling".

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