HRW: RSF` Atrocities in Darfur

Agencies- Sudan Events

The Rapid Support Forces (RSF) and their allied militias killed hundreds of civilians in West Darfur in early November 2023, they, also, looted, assaulted, and unlawfully detained scores of members of the predominantly Massalit community in Ardamata, a suburb of West Darfur’s El Genaina.
Given the pending closure of the UN mission in Sudan, and replacement by a special envoy, the United Nations Security Council should urgently consider ways to strengthen the UN’s presence in Sudan that could deter further atrocities and better protect civilians in Darfur. It should support monitoring of human rights abuses there and expand the existing arms embargo to cover the entire country and all parties to the ongoing armed conflict. African members of the Security Council, the United Arab Emirates, and other governments on the council should support these and other measures to ensure the UN’s most powerful body is able to fulfil its responsibility to protect civilians in West Darfur and the rest of Sudan.
(RSF) latest episode of ethnically targeted killings in West Darfur, has the hallmarks of an organized campaign of atrocities against Massalit civilians,” said Mohamed Osman, Sudan researcher at Human Rights Watch. “The UNSC needs to stop ignoring the desperate need to protect Darfur civilians.”
According to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), an estimated 800 people were killed during the early November attacks in Ardamata. Local rights monitors interviewed survivors arriving in Chad and estimated the death toll of mainly civilians at between 1,300 and 2,000, including dozens killed on the road to Chad. At least 8,000 people have fled into Chad, joining around 450,000, mostly women and children, displaced by attacks in West Darfur notably between April and June.
Human Rights Watch interviewed 20 Massalit people who fled Ardamata to eastern Chad between November 1-10, who described a spree of killings, shelling, unlawful detentions, sexual violence, ill-treatment, and looting. All interviewees are identified by pseudonyms for their protection. Human Rights Watch also analyzed 8 videos and images posted on social media that show the Rapid Support Forces detaining over 200 men and boys in Ardamata. One video shows the fighters beating a group of men.
Satellite imagery taken the first week of November shows the impact of the shelling on civilian and military infrastructure as well as looting and arson in and around the Ardamata displaced people’s camp. Satellite imagery also shows possible new graves and bodies in the street.
Ongoing Human Rights Watch research and media reports indicate that they killed civilians by the thousands, burned whole neighbourhoods and sites where displaced people had found refuge in El Genaina, looted on a grand scale, and raped women and girls. These attacks forcibly displaced hundreds of thousands of civilians, with thousands seeking refuge in Ardamata where both a Sudanese Armed Forces base and an internally displaced people have camps.
Survivors and local monitors said that on November 1, fighting broke out again between the Rapid Support Forces and the Sudanese Armed Forces. During the two days of heavy fighting that followed, both parties shelled the suburb, in some cases affecting civilians. Residents said that some Massalit fighters joined the fight alongside the Sudanese Armed Forces.

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