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AL FULA - 7 Jan 2013

17 dead in Misseriya clan fighting

Clashes between Misseriya tribal sections around al-Fula town in the western sector of South Kordofan since early morning Sunday resulted in injuries or death of dozens of fighters.

Eyewitnesses told Radio Tamazuj from the western sector of South Kordofan that an intense gunfight in the town broke out from between the Awlad Heiban clan and the Awlad Serur and Metanin clans on the other side, which led to death of 17 and injury to an unconfirmed number who were taken to the town hospital.

Sources acknowledged that 11 people were killed from Heiban clan and 6 from Awlad Serur and Metanin.

The fighting was traced back to an agreement signed between the local authorities and the petroleum companies operating in the area, which pay compensation in order for them to operate in the area.

The agreement prevents the pastoralists from grazing their cattle on oil fields as these areas are owned by the petroleum companies.

Witnesses attributed the explosion of the conflict to negligence of the authorities mediating between the parties to find satisfactory solutions until the situation worsened.

They expressed their fears of the worsening crisis and the impact of fragmentation of the social fabric of the region.