Farmers abducted, livestock released on farmlands in Darfur

By IAfrica
In Sudan
Jul 22nd, 2014

Militiamen abducted two farmers and seized their tractor in the area of Dankoj in Central Darfur on Friday. The farmers were released on Sunday. The gunmen demand SDG35,000 for the return of the tractor. In East Jebel Marra, herders released their camels and cattle on farmlands by force of arms.

“Two militiamen on a motorcycle on Friday attacked two farmers, while they were tending their lands in the area of Dankoj, east of Central Darfur’s capital of Zalingei,” a villager told Radio Dabanga from Dankoj.

“They beat them with rifle butts, before abducting them. They also took their tractor. The two farmers were released on Sunday, but they have to pay SDG35,000 ($6,110) to get their tractor back, the abductors told them.”

The villager said that the “government-backed militiamen these days have intensified their attacks in the areas of Waranga, Dankoj, and Tarka”. “The gunmen expel farmers from their lands at gunpoint. They threaten them with murder, if they would ever return.”

He demanded from the authorities to put an end to the violations of the militiamen, and protect the farmers, “so they can continue cultivating their farmlands”.

East Jebel Marra

Since one week, farmers in East Jebel Marra have not been able to work on their lands, as herders released their camels and cattle in the area by force of arms.

One of the affected farmers told Radio Dabanga that a week ago herders entered their livestock at gunpoint in a farmland area of ​​about 350 acres. “The farmers of Hashaba, Koto, Dali, Karfola, and Nimra cannot reach their lands anymore.”

He appealed to the authorities to intervene, deter the herders, and protect the farmers. 

On 20 July, Radio Dabanga reported that militiamen in North Darfur are grazing their livestock at farmlands. “They prohibit us to prepare for the new agricultural season,” a farmer in Donki Ba’ashim said.

File photo: A farmer in Foro Baranga, West Darfur (Albert González Farran/Unamid)

Related: Gunmen block farmers from tending their lands in Darfur (20 July 2014)

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