Anti-Government Protests in Darfur

It’s worth keeping an eye on the anti-government, anti-austerity protests that occurred on Tuesday and Wednesday in Darfur, Sudan:

Some 400 people gathered in the main market and two other areas of the western city of Nyala [on Wednesday] to protest against the government and rising inflation, but were dispersed by the baton-wielding police, a journalist and witness said.

[...]

More than 1,000 demonstrators clashed with police in Nyala on Tuesday, according to witnesses. Activists published a list of 12 people they said had been killed in Tuesday’s clashes, countering the official death toll of eight.

Map of Nyala here, and more on Tuesday’s protests here.

A wave of anti-austerity protests began in the capital Khartoum and elsewhere in mid-June. These protests in Darfur remind us that people are dissatisfied with the economic situation in various parts of the country, not just at the center. The protests are also a reminder that not all politics in Darfur revolve around rebel movements – though government officials have accused rebel groups of stirring up these protests. I was surprised to learn that Nyala has an estimated population of 500,000, a population is certainly large enough to support a movement of dissent.

In what may be an unrelated incident, a local government official and his driver were shot by unknown gunmen this week in Kutum, Darfur (map). Two similar incidents have occurred in recent months, with gunmen seizing land cruisers (Arabic).

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2 thoughts on “Anti-Government Protests in Darfur

  1. Reportedly Sudan and South Sudan have come to an agreement on oil payments and will be negotiating when to restart oil production soon. So far I haven’t seen any numbers so it’s impossible to say which (if either) side won but it could have resulted from protests putting pressure on the Sudanese government, South Sudan realizing they couldn’t keep control without money, international pressure or something else.

  2. Pingback: Another Round of Protests in Sudan | Sahel Blog

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