The death toll from recent violence in Darfur, western Sudan, has risen to more than 125 and 50,000 people have been displaced, the United Nations said in a statement Tuesday.
The fighting broke out on June 6 between members of the non-Arab Gimir tribe and the Arab Rizeigat tribe in the Kolbous area, about 100 miles north of El-Geneina, the capital of West Darfur.
A land dispute between one member of the Rizeigat and another of the Gimir triggered the violence in this arid region bordering Chad, which has already been the scene of deadly violence in recent months.
« More than 125 people were killed and many others wounded » between June 6 and 11, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said Tuesday.
More than 25 Gimir villages « were attacked, looted and burned » and « 50,000 people fled Kolbous to the nearby localities of Sirba, Jebel Moon and Sarfa Omra, » it added in a statement.
Ibrahim Hachem, a leader of the Gimir tribe, had reported on Monday that more than 110 people had died in the fighting of the last few days.
« The situation remains tense » in the villages of the Kolbous region, he said.
Mr. Hashem also noted the government’s deployment of the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) group near the Gimir villages.
The RSF is largely composed of Arab nomads from the armed Janjaweed militia, who have been accused of committing atrocities in Darfur.
This vast region was ravaged by a civil war in 2003 between the then Arab-majority regime of Omar al-Bashir and ethnic minority insurgents claiming discrimination.
Omar al-Bashir sent the armed Janjaweed militia to quell the rebellion. He has since been overthrown in 2019 and imprisoned.
About 300,000 people died and nearly 2.5 million were displaced during the first years of violence in Darfur, according to the UN.
Many weapons are still circulating in Darfur, which remains mired in violence despite a 2020 agreement between the authorities in Khartoum and the main rebel groups, including those in Darfur.
Sudan, which in 2019 will have emerged from 30 years of military-Islamist dictatorship, is still sinking into political and economic stagnation.