Thousands of protesters gathered in front of army headquarters in the Sudanese city of Damazin on Sunday, eyewitnesses said, protesting recent ethnic clashes in the south of the country, which left 200 dead.
Protesters “tried to enter the army headquarters” before “the state government building was set on fire,” resident Abdel Qader Ibrahim told AFP by phone from Damazin, the capital of the southern state of Blue Nile, which borders Ethiopia and South Africa. -Sudan.
At least 200 people were killed in two days last week, official media said Saturday, after clashes erupted over reported land disputes between members of the Hausa people and rival groups.
Residents said houses and shops had been set on fire and hundreds had fled intense gunfire.
“Hospitals are facing a huge shortage of medicines as the number of injured people increases,” state health minister Jamal Nasser told AFP on Sunday.
State governor Ahmed al-Omda Badi declared a state of emergency on Friday to quell some of the worst fighting in recent months.
From July to early October, at least 149 people died and 65,000 were displaced in the Blue Nile, according to the United Nations.
According to eyewitness Haram Othman, protesters chanted “Al-Omda must leave”, accusing the governor of failing to protect them.
The Hausa have mobilized across Sudan, claiming tribal law discriminates against them by preventing them from owning land in Blue Nile because they were the last group to arrive there.
Land access is highly sensitive in the impoverished country, where agriculture and livestock account for 43 percent of employment and 30 percent of GDP, according to UN and World Bank statistics.
Sudan has struggled with mounting political unrest and a spiral of economic crisis since a military coup led by army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan last year.
A wave of ethnic violence in recent months has exposed the security crisis in Sudan since the coup.
According to the UN, nearly 600 people have been killed and at least 211,000 have been forced to flee their homes since January in inter-communal conflicts across the country.