Monday, December 1, 2008

Sudan destroys 10,000 homes of Southerners

Sudan’s government ordered the destruction of as many as 10,000 homes in a slum outside the capital, Khartoum, as part of an urban planning program, a local administration official said.

The campaign forced thousands of people to live in makeshift shelters made of sticks and cloth on the fringes of the Mandela settlement, 20 kilometers (12 miles) south of Khartoum, said former residents including Mary Deng and Ahmad Abderahim. The slum was formed in the early 1990s by migrants from the western region of Darfur and southern Sudan.

“The demolition came with the agreement of the people,” Madut Wek, a spokesman for Mandela’s so-called popular committee, a state-backed local authority that administers the settlement, said on Nov. 29. “When you live in a camp, you’re not comfortable. You’re not settled.”

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