Sudanese government troops ambushed rebels in the western Darfur region on Wednesday and Thursday, killing at least two fighters, a rebel spokesman says. “Yesterday we lost two men and five were injured,” Ibrahim al-Helwu, a spokesman of the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA), told Reuters.
The rebels were ambushed as they were heading from southern to northern Darfur in a convoy, Helwu said. There were further clashes on Thursday, but it was not clear how many troops were killed or wounded, he added. A spokesman for the northern army was not immediately available to comment on the report.
Helwu said the rebels killed 17 government soldiers and wounded 21 during the fighting on Wednesday. It was impossible to independently verify the figures.
Violence in Darfur, where mostly non-Arab rebels are fighting government troops backed by largely Arab militias, has fallen from its peak in 2003 and 2004 but a surge in attacks since December has forced tens of thousands to flee.
Qatar has hosted Darfur peace talks that have been delayed by rebel divisions and continued military operations on the ground as Khartoum has gradually reasserted control over major towns and other previously rebel-held areas.