Khartoum [Sudan], November 12 (ANI): Over 800 people have been killed, and more than 4.8 million people have been displaced in the last six months due to the armed insurgency in Ardamata in Sudan's West Darfur, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
The escalating violence across the Darfur region of Sudan has sparked fears that atrocities committed two decades ago could be repeated, according to a statement by the UN on Friday.
Ardamata also housed a camp for internally displaced people. Close to 100 shelters have been razed to the ground, while extensive looting, including of UNHCR relief items, has also taken place, the statement said.
Meanwhile, thousands of people were killed across Darfur two decades ago and millions were displaced in fighting between Sudanese government forces backed by allied militias known as the Janjaweed on one side and rebel groups resisting the autocratic rule of President Omar al-Bashir, who was ousted in 2019, as per the UN.
UN Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, Alice Wairimu Nderitu, warned in June that if fighting in West Darfur continued, including attacks based on ethnicity, this could amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.
As a result, the UN refugee agency expressed alarm over reports of continued sexual violence, torture, arbitrary killings, extortion of civilians, and targeting of specific ethnic groups.
UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, said: "Twenty years ago, the world was shocked by the terrible atrocities and human rights violations in Darfur. We fear a similar dynamic might be developing.""An immediate end to the fighting and unconditional respect for the civilian population by all parties are crucial to avoid another catastrophe," he added, according to the UN.
More than 4.8 million people have been displaced inside Sudan since fighting broke out in mid-April between the army and a paramilitary group known as the Rapid Support Forces (RSF). A further 1.2 million have sought refuge in neighbouring countries.
As per UNHCR, more than 8,000 people fled to Chad in the last week alone, though this is likely to be an underestimate due to challenges registering new arrivals. (ANI)