Sudan’s Hawsa people block roads after deadly tribal clashes

Thousands of Sudan’s Hawsa people set up barricades and attacked government buildings in several cities on Monday, witnesses said, after a week of deadly tribal clashes in the country’s south.

Violence in Blue Nile state, which borders Ethiopia, has killed 60 people and injured 163 others, including 13 in serious condition, according to health officials.

The clashes first broke out a week ago on Monday between the Berti and Hawsa tribes, after the Bertis rejected a Hawsa request to “create a civil authority to oversee access to land”, a prominent Hawsa member told AFP on condition of anonymity.

But a senior member of the Bertis said the tribe was responding to “encroachment” on its lands by the Hawsas.

Troops were deployed in Blue Nile on Saturday, and since then an uneasy calm has prevailed there although tensions have increased elsewhere.

In the eastern city of Kassala, the government banned public meetings after thousands of Hawsa people “set fire to government buildings and shops”, according to eyewitness Hussein Saleh.

“It’s panic in the center of the city,” Kassala resident Idriss Hussein told AFP by telephone. He said protesters were “blocking roads and waving sticks.”

In the city of Wad Madani, about 200 kilometers (about 125 miles) south of Khartoum, “hundreds of Hawsa people put up stone barricades and burned tires on the main bridge to block traffic”, resident Adel Ahmed told AFP .

Experts say a military coup led by army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan in October 2021 created a security vacuum that fueled a resurgence in tribal violence, in a country where deadly clashes regularly erupt over land, livestock, access to water and pasture. .

Pro-democracy activists have accused Sudan’s military and former rebel leaders who signed the 2020 peace deal of exacerbating ethnic tensions in Blue Nile for personal gain.

The Hawsas, also known as Hausa, are one of the largest ethnic groups in Africa, with thousands of members living in several countries.

There are three million Hawaiians in Sudan, where they follow the majority religion of Islam, but speak their own native language other than Arabic.

They live mainly from agriculture in Darfur, Al-Jazira state and in the eastern states of Kassala, Gedaref, Sennar and Blue Nile.

Sudan’s Hawsa people block roads after deadly tribal clashes Source link Sudan’s Hawsa people block roads after deadly tribal clashes

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