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Over 200 die in renewed Darfur crisis



…18m face hunger

AT LEAST 201 people died and 98 injured in new spate of violence in West Darfur state in Sudan, an official working for the governor of the region said today.

They died when houses were set alight, hospitals attacked and businesses plundered by irate mobs engaging in series of attacks and counter attacks after violence erupted in Al Kuraynik on Friday and quickly spread to West Darfur capital of Al Geneina today.

Although reasons for the violence remain unclear, some reports say the clashes are between nomads and farmers competing for grazing space and water.

Other reports point to an attack by Rapid Support Forces militia, formerly known as Janjaweed. But UN Special Representative for Sudan, Volker Perthes, has called for an independent investigation into the causes of the violence.

It will be recalled that there have been repeated outbreaks of violence in recent months in Sudan’s West Darfur state and in the neighbouring states of North Darfur and South Darfur. But aid organisations project 18 million people to face acute food insecurity by September owing to disruption of harvest by the new crisis.

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