South Darfur town falls to rebel group as Sudan army claims recapture of new area
KHARTOUM – Rebel fighters belonging to the faction of Sudan Liberation Army led by Minni Minnawi (SLA-MM) managed to seize the town of Gereida in South Darfur from the hands of government troops, according to Sudanese MP.
Gereida is about 100 kilometers (60 miles) south of Nyala? the South Darfur state capital.
Yacoub Mohamed al-Malik, who represents the town in the national assembly, said that SLA-MM entered using 37 Toyota Land Cruiser vehicles at 3 p.m. inflicting unspecified human and material losses.
SLA-MM fighters attacked from southeast and engaged with an army garrison before proceeding to control the town, he said.
The MP claimed that buildings belonging to local government and police as well as the market were looted in the aftermath.
Eyewitnesses told Sudan Tribune that several people were injured and that the telecommunication tower was destroyed.
South Darfur government spokesperson Ahmed al-Tayeb accused South Sudan of supporting the assailants adding that the army fought fierce battles with SLA-MM.
SLA-MM confirmed the reports and revealed that other rebel groups took part.
“Today our joint troops took control of Gereida after fighting with [Sudan Armed Forces] SAF,” Abdullah Moursal, spokesman for SLA-MM told Agence France Presse.
“From our side there were four people wounded,” Moursal said, adding that the attack took place in conjunction with rebels of the SLA faction headed by Abdel-Wahid Nur (SLA-AW).
The two groups are part of the Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF) which also includes Darfur Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) and Sudan People Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N).
The umbrella coalition has as its stated goal ??? toppling the Khartoum regime.
In a related issue, SAF has reportedly recaptured Kafan Dibi area in South Darfur on the borders with South Sudan from SRF and South Sudan’s SPLA.
The government sponsored Sudanese Media Center (SMC) website quoted South Darfur government spokesperson as saying that SAF inflicted heavy losses on the rebels.
Kafan Dabi is one of the border areas that are in dispute between Khartoum and Juba.
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