‘Sudan still using army, militias to target Nuba Mountains civilians’ –report

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Marking “20 months of war in South Kordofan”, a human rights organization released a report depicting the political and humanitarian situations in the state, including in the Nuba Mountains. The results provided are based on the agency’s own observations on the ground, but also on local reports and on information gathered from various sources.

“The government of Sudan is still using its national security, military, police and tribal militias to oppress and violate peoples' rights targeting unarmed citizens, detaining and killing them.

In the area occupied by government forces, the security forces have repeatedly targeted the Nuba Mountains people (civilians), arresting them and hiding some in un gazette cells, torture them both physically and psychologically, as well as using tribal and racist words in disregard to Sudan constitution and international laws.

They even harass other groups that sympathize with the Nuba people”, the report by the Human Rights and Development Organization (HUDO) read.

Read below summarized parts of the report:

Political Situation

The Political situation in the Nuba Mountains region still remains uncertain due to the controversial political statements from government officials. The promise of a new state of West Kordofan never materialized. However its repercussions were extended to tribal groups in the region, who began organizing themselves and threatening each other competing to see which group will take the lead in upcoming new state.

“Generally the promise of the new state has created a serious tension among Nuba and Arab groups, on the other hand between Arab groups themselves, which means that it will lead to a tribal conflict. It is clear the government's goal in the promises of new state was to create more tensions and fuel the ethnic strife between different ethnic groups in the region, after its failure to end the conflict politically or militarily”, as quoted in the report.

Humanitarian Situation

“The aggression is more severe in the IDP camps that have been created. In other places especially those neighboring the IDP camps, they burn down peoples' farms and harvests (food). On the other side (SPLM area), air bombardment is always carried out by troops from El Obeid airport on unarmed people in villages instead of SPLA fighters (, In the last two months, there has been no shelling from SPLA towards towns”, HUDO said.

Forced displacement occurred as a result of the governmental evacuation order (May 2012), militias attacks in Sug-Eljabel villages (July-2012) and the war between government forces and the SPLA (Aug-2012) in the area of Moreib and Tassai. People were also forced to flee the villages of Abbasiya and Rashad.

Because of the government's refusal to set up displaced camps, people were forced for the second time to flee to the northern part of Abbasiya locality, on the border of North and South Kordofan. They joined those who fled there before them and created a camp in September 2012.

This camp grew increasingly bigger, regardless of challenges posed by the government such as denial of food, blocking food supply, and arresting raping and abducting some of the camp’s residents.

As a result of the events above, the following amount of families have been displaced:

  • El Mashaggah camp: populated by 650 families;

  • Um Marreh village camp: populated by 500 families;

  • Mabsut village camp: populated by 480 families;

  • Gurdud Nyama: populated by 70 families;

  • Displaced in Wakara: 60 families settled within;

  • Displaced in Tabassa: 45 families located within.


In its report, HUDO outlined the following appeals concerning the situations described above:

  • The need to put pressure on government of Sudan to allow National and International NGOs to access IDP camps, to provide food and non-food aid. The presence of NGOs in camps will help in monitoring the protection issues.

  • The international corporation must put more pressure on the government of Sudan to stop the systematic targeting against Nuba people and respect the international humanitarian laws, and especially air bombardments against the civilians, and to take all measures necessary, including no fly zone in the war-prone areas.