West News Wire: 24 women and girls were sexually attacked in Nyala, the capital of South Darfur, by men who were driving vehicles with the paramilitary’s licence plates and wearing uniforms resembling those of Sudan’s Rapid Support Forces (RSF).
The victims, the youngest of whom is 14 years old, were brought to Nyala’s Aldaman Hotel, where they were sexually raped for three days by males who had fled the violent fighting in the city. A few of the victims were able to flee.
At least 11 attacks on humanitarian premises in Khartoum and four new attacks against health facilities have been reported since the signing of the Jeddah declaration on 11 May, the UN’s humanitarian agency said on Sunday.
Over a million people have been displaced since the conflict began, fleeing to safer locations inside and outside Sudan.
The worst violence outside of Khartoum has taken place in Darfur, which has been embroiled in conflict for virtually the entire twenty-first century.
According to the UN, fighting in El Geneina, the capital of the West Darfur area, has intensified, forcing at least 85,000 people to flee their homes and denying locals access to essential necessities like water and medicine.
“Cases of gang rape” have occurred, local activists in Nyala informed MEE.
Activists were told by survivors of the attacks that the attackers “rode in cars bearing RSF plates and wore uniforms similar to those of the Rapid Support Forces.”
According to the campaigners, “there were 24 cases of women and girls being raped, ranging in age from 14 to 56 years old.”
“They were raped by escapees from the Rapid Support Forces inside the Aldaman Hotel and at other locations nearby,” the activists told MEE.
“A number of them managed to escape. The rest stayed for three days. The girl of 14 was very badly hurt.”
Following the abuse, 18 of the girls and women received treatment in a covert neighbourhood clinic with injections, antibiotics, and Panadol. Additionally, a social worker saw them.
The Darfuri organisers informed MEE that “the remaining cases refused to comply with examination and receive treatment in addition to psychological support.”
Finding transportation and planning safe routes are two issues that medical staff must deal with when coordinating treatment.
Additionally, the RSF has been charged with robbing stores and markets all around South Darfur.
MEE has requested a response from the paramilitary regarding the claims of gang rape.
Following an agreement for a brief ceasefire between the warring sides in Sudan the day before in Saudi Arabia, the deadly combat continued on Sunday.
Reports of continued fighting between the army and the RSF received from witnesses in Khartoum and throughout Darfur.
The fighting started on the morning of April 15, and a seven-day ceasefire was reached in Jeddah as a result of negotiations brokered by the United States and Saudi Arabia. It is the first document that both parties of the conflict have signed.
The cease-fire will go into effect on Monday at 9.45 p.m. Khartoum time. It is intended to make it easier for humanitarian aid to enter the capital of Sudan and to result in the RSF leaving hospitals and other facilities, such as water and power plants.
“Your armed forces announces its commitment to the text of the agreement and hopes that the rebel militia will do the same,” a Sudanese army spokesperson said in a statement on its Facebook page.
The Forces for Freedom and Change civilian coalition welcomed the ceasefire.
Following the dismissal of RSF leader Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo as a representative on Sudan’s independent executive council, a ceasefire was reached on Saturday.
Dagalo, also known as Hemeti, had managed to stay in power throughout the nearly five-week conflict with General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the nation’s de facto leader.