Kutum / El Fasher / Nyala — People in Darfur are facing a deepening crisis as they grapple with multiple challenges brought on by security instability and faltering services. Fears of escalating violence in Kutum, North Darfur, arise as gunmen patrol roads. El Fasher's health sector faces shortages. In the South Darfur capital, four hospitals have re-opened their doors.
Repeated attacks on Kutum by members of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and groups of gunmen in the past few days, left at least 40 people dead and dozens injured.
The Kutum People's Committee has formed a team to evacuate the wounded to health facilities and keep track of the security and humanitarian conditions in the area. On Monday evening, a second group of injured people from Kutum arrived at the Southern Hospital in the North Darfur capital of El Fasher.
Many residents of Kutum have fled to Hashaba in West Darfur, sources from the area reported to Radio Dabanga.
The situation in Kutum remains tense, with "crowds of gunmen riding on motorbikes roaming the roads between Kutum and El Fasher," the sources said. There are fears of potential attacks on villages in the area.
Ongoing communication outages further complicate the situation.
El Fasher is witnessing a temporary calm with a complete cessation of firing between the conflicting parties. The city experienced heavy rains on Tuesday morning.
People in El Fasher are suffering from prolonged power outages and disruptions to the telephone network, a listener told Radio Dabanga.
The recent clashes between the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) and the RSF in and around the city resulted in the destruction of power lines and the cessation of fuel supplies from Khartoum, exacerbating the energy crisis.
The source said that state workers have not received their salaries for the months of April and May. "The lack of liquidity, coupled with the cessation of banking application services due to internet outages, has compounded the difficulties faced by the people of El Fasher," she said.
Youth initiatives have made an urgent appeal to the government of North Darfur to provide more medical services to the Southern Hospital in El Fasher, as it plays a crucial role in treating war-wounded injuries as the sole facility equipped for such cases.
In Nyala, capital of South Darfur, people are also suffering from high prices and a lack of food supplies in the market. The burning of the Grand Market and the blockade on access of lorries into the city have further contributed to the scarcity of basic commodities and soaring prices. According to sources, many merchants have taken their goods to their homes to protect them from theft or destruction.
The army reopened the Mecca Bridge in Nyala, connecting the north and south of the city, after a closure that lasted over two weeks.
The SAF closed the bridge, located near the Nyala military base, in May, during to prevent RSF soldiers from approaching.
According to Soheiba Mubarak, Acting Minister of Health in South Darfur, the fighting caused approximately 50 deaths and more than 260 injuries, and has left the state's healthcare system with "a severe shortage of essential medicines and available supplies only sufficient for two weeks".
She reported that four hospitals were able to resume work in the South Darfur capital: the Nyala Teaching Hospital, the Specialists Hospital, the Turkish Hospital, and El Wehda Hospital, in addition to six health centres.