SUDAN WATCH: HRW has evidence of Sudanese Janjaweed attacks in Chad and calls for sanctions against Janjaweed leaders Hamid Dawai and Abdullah Abu Shineibat

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

HRW has evidence of Sudanese Janjaweed attacks in Chad and calls for sanctions against Janjaweed leaders Hamid Dawai and Abdullah Abu Shineibat

Reuters report by Opheera McDoom 21 Feb 2006 says Chadian farmers are being beaten, harassed and killed in raids by Sudanese militia, at times with support from Sudanese army helicopters, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said in a report 21 Feb 2006. Excerpt:

The [HRW] report quoted dozens of interviews with some of the tens of thousands of Chadians who have fled their homes, flooding already overcrowded refugee camps along the long and porous Chad-Sudan border.

A 51-year-old Chadian farmer interviewed by Human Rights Watch said the Janjaweed were targeting non-Arab tribes.

"This is not your land. ... If you stay you will be killed, but if you run we won't kill you," he quoted the Janjaweed as saying when he fled his land.

HRW said it had evidence of Sudanese army involvement in the militia attacks and had documented at least four attacks by Sudanese armed forces on eastern Chadian villages.

"Witness accounts and physical evidence indicated that government of Sudan troops and helicopter gunships participated directly in attacks, while many people reported seeing Antonov aircraft approach from Sudan, circle overhead, then return to Sudan in advance of Janjaweed raids," the report said.

The New York-based rights group said Hamid Dawai and Abdullah Abu Shineibat, who they described as Janjaweed leaders with known links to the Sudanese government, were involved in the attacks and should be subject to a UN imposed travel ban and asset freeze.

One 50-year-old man interviewed by the rights group said he fled an attack on his village to a refugee camp in Darfur. Now he's fleeing insecurity from inside the camp.

"If they like your wife, they take her," he said of the Janjaweed in the camp. "Even the soldiers enter the camp and behave like the Janjaweed."

Postcard from Darfur

Image: Janjaweed - See HRW 21 Feb 2006 - Darfur Bleeds: Recent Cross-Border Violence in Chad
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Confronting War Crimes in Africa

Note this excerpt from the U.S. Hearing Before the Sub Committee on Africa of the Committee on International Relations House of Representatives June 24, 2004:

"Credible organizations have reported the following individuals of the Jingaweit bear responsibility for the atrocities that have occurred there. While we know there are others, the United States is working to determine their culpability and the culpability of others who support them. Some of the individuals are Musa Hilal, a Jingaweit coordinator; Hamid Dawai; Abdullah abu Shineibat; Omar Babbush; Omada Saef; Ahmad Dekheir; Ahmed Abu Kamasha. These people need to be investigated and brought to justice."

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