The Arab militias that have so terrorized the residents of the Darfur region of Sudan are reported to be massing in large numbers. While their purpose is not clear, Reuters reports:
…"They are massing ... they have vehicles with machineguns on top and they're janjaweed. We can't say what their intentions are," said the source, who asked not to be named.
The source declined to give numbers, but described the forces gathered as a "huge amount of personnel," with pickup trucks, camels and horses.
He added that an African Union helicopter was keeping the forces under aerial surveillance and the government was being notified. The Sudanese military could not be reached for comment.
Rights group and Western governments say the Sudanese government has used the janjaweed as auxiliaries against Darfur rebels and civilians suspected of rebel sympathies. The government denies this and says the janjaweed are outlaws.
On Monday, a report by the U.N. Mission in Sudan said that "armed militia have been mobilizing in large numbers over the last five days in the general area of Abou Souroug and Sliea (approximately 50 km north of el-Geneina). The reason behind the massive militia mobilization is so far not known."…
Their intentions may not be "known" but, if history is any guide, those intentions are not good.