KHARTOUM: A Sudanese militia has shot dead nine people in a village of the war-torn region of Darfur, a doctors committee linked to the country’s protest movement said on Tuesday.
The “massacre” was carried out on Monday by the Janjaweed in Al-Dalij in Central Darfur state, the committee said on its Facebook page.
The Janjaweed, a militia accused by rights groups of widespread abuses in the Darfur region, have been absorbed in Sudan’s paramilitary Rapid Support Forces.
“Yesterday, they fired live ammunition on citizens in the souk of Dalij,” the doctors’ committee said.
“Following the systematic massacre, the doctors in the area of Dalij received 11 dead and 20 wounded.”
“The doctors confirmed that nine citizens were killed by bullets and sticks of the Janjaweed. However, the cause of death of the other two or who they were was unclear,” the committee said, adding the militia had “spread death on citizens for ages”.
The committee said it was unable to gather information of Monday’s killings earlier because of the difficulties faced following a “cut in communication” lines amid nationwide internet outages.
The Janjaweed were recruited when Khartoum trained and equipped Arab raiders to crush an ethnic minority rebellion in Darfur that erupted in 2003.
The groups were sent to attack villages on camel and horseback as part of a campaign of terror that saw now ousted president Omar al-Bashir indicted for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide by the International Criminal Court.
The Darfur conflict erupted after ethnic minority rebels picked up arms against Bashir’s then government, accusing it of marginalising the region economically and politically.
The United Nations says the conflict left more than 300,000 people dead and 2.5 million displaced.
Over the years the violence in Darfur has substantially reduced, and the militia absorbed in the Rapid Support Forces, which is headed by Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, the deputy chief of Sudan’s ruling military council.