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Sudan Tribune

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Aid group says Darfur conflict “gained in intensity”

July 27, 2010 (KHARTOUM) — Fighting between government forces and rebel groups in Sudan’s westernmost region of Darfur has “gained in intensity” in recent months, making it “very difficult for international aid organizations to operate,” an international aid group said yesterday.

A report released by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) about its activities in Darfur during the period between May and June noted the armed conflict in Sudan’s western region has intensified over the recent months.

ICRC ringed the alarm bell about the situation in Jabal Marra, Jabal Moon and Jebel Si areas where it said it had been unable to deliver aid as a result of renewed hostilities between government forces and rebel groups.

“Armed violence and insecurity arising from banditry and crime continue to make it very difficult and dangerous for humanitarian organizations to operate in Darfur”, said the ICRC report.

The United Nations-African Union mission in Darfur (UNAMID) reported that the number of confirmed fatalities in Darfur during the last month of June stood at 221.

UNAMID’s figures reveal that the major cause of death was inter-Arab tribes fighting in western Darfur, which accounted for 139 fatalities

Darfur region has been steeped in a civil conflict that erupted in 2003 between rebel groups and the central government in Khartoum led by president Al-Bashir. According to UN estimates, the conflict resulted in the killing of some 300,000 people as well as the displacement of millions.

Khartoum disputes the death toll, putting it at only 10,000.