Sudanese authorities declared a state of emergency in the Darfur region due to escalating violence and unrest on Monday, July 13. The announcement comes following The African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur's (UNAMID) announcement that personnel were sent to the village of Kutum due to ongoing protests that had led to the burning of cars and of the local police station. News agencies also reported that security forces had used live ammunition to disperse a sit-in protest in Kutum on Sunday, July 12. Additionally, on July 12, a militia reportedly attacked a group of protesters in the Fatabarno village, which is located in close proximity to Kutum. Reportedly, the government is having discussions with rebel groups in an attempt to curb violence in the region.
Further violence and unrest are expected in Darfur in the coming days and weeks.
Although levels of violence have decreased since the signing of a peace agreement roadmap in early 2016, tensions remain high in Darfur, and the region continues to present a range of significant security challenges. The ceasefire has reduced the level of violence in the region since 2016, but disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration successes have been limited, and multiple armed groups continue to operate in the region. Persistent violence and instability coupled with the widespread availability of firearms have also created an environment conducive to armed banditry, while persistent communal tensions have often resulted in unrest and clashes between rival armed groups.
Individuals present in Sudan, particularly Darfur region, are advised to monitor local developments, maintain a high degree of situational awareness, and remain vigilant for potential militant activity.
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