Wad Madani / Wad Kusheib — Marauding members of the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) are reportedly “wreaking havoc” among civilians in parts of Sudan under the militia’s control. While individual incidents are often hard to verify, reports reaching Radio Dabanga show a clear pattern of widespread banditry, including murder, robbery, and sexual violence.
Two young people from Soriba village in the southern part of El Gezira were killed on Thursday, allegedly by soldiers of the RSF who stormed the village. A similar incursion was reported from Wad Kusheib village in White Nile state last week.
A villager told Radio Dabanga from Soriba that RSF soldiers stormed the village on Thursday. “They demanded that we hand over our belongings and money. They threatened that they would take our daughters and burn the village if we would not do so.”
Threat: ‘We will take your daughters…’
In response, a group of villagers confronted and detained them, and handed them over to one of the RSF bases, according to a prior agreement with the RSF command, he explained.
“However, we were shocked when a large, heavily armed RSF unit then stormed the village, terrorised the security forces, and fired live bullets randomly, leaving two dead and others injured. The injured were taken to El Managil Hospital. The RSF took a number of young men from the village, detained them for 24 hours, and released them.”
A similar incident occurred in the village of Wad Kusheib in White Nile state last week. A member of the RSF was found dead in the neighbourhood, the paramilitaries threatened to burn the village. The residents called for help, after which RSF commanders visited the village and denied the threats.
The RSF in southern El Gezira set up a base west of Goz El Reheid and east of El Hadi in mid-January and began searching villagers on their way to the market of El Hadi, which is the only market in the area.
Victims told Radio Dabanga that they were robbed at gunpoint. They estimated the amount of money taken from them at more than SDG12 million. A large three-tonne transport vehicle loaded with goods and a box cart were also stolen.
They said that during the search, the force shot two young men in the leg, one of them lives in Goz El Reheid Al, the other in Mueijna village.
In El Hasaheisa in northern El Gezira “a force affiliated with the RSF robbed farmers as they were leaving the town last week. They were chased at gunpoint, hit with rifle butts, and all their money, estimated at SFG5 million was stolen from them.
Another RSF unit intercepted three lorries loaded with food supplies on their way from El Managil to Abu Gouta. The owners were beaten and robbed at gunpoint.
Various sources reported outposts on the El Hasaheisa, Tabit, and El Farijab roads, “for robbery by force of arms”. They also set up other outposts on the Wad Bilal Bridge, the Air Bridge, the entrance to Wad Silfab, and the Bakheet Bridge to El Hasaheisa town where they search people and rob them of their money and possessions.
In the area west of Tabit area, people complain about the heavy presence of RSF soldiers riding in four-wheel drive vehicles and attacking unarmed citizens. They called on the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) “to do their duty, intervene and protect the people”.