Hundreds killed in Sudan nomadic clashes

Last Updated: Fri, May 29, 2009 15:50 hrs

Nairobi/Khartoum, May 29 (DPA) A week of clashes between nomadic tribes in central Sudan has killed almost 250 people, among them police officers, Sudan's interior minister has said.

Ibrahim Mahmoud Hamad said that 75 police personnel were amongst those killed in battles between the Arab Misseriya and Rizeiqat tribes in South Kordofan, the state-owned Suna news agency reported.

The two tribes have a long history of fighting over grazing and water, but this particular battle has exceeded all previous conflicts.

The battle began last weekend in small town in South Kordofan, which lies between Southern Sudan and Darfur.

When police tried to intervene Tuesday and form a buffer zone between the warring tribes, they came under attack by thousands of horsemen from the Rizeigat tribe.

Hamad said that steps were being taken to disarm the groups and that those responsible for the carnage would be brought to justice.

The United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) earlier this month deployed around 120 peacekeepers to the southern Sudanese state of Jonglei after clashes between different tribes.

At least 750 people died in March during fighting between the Nuer and Murle ethnic groups that was sparked by cattle rustling raids.

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