Sudan’s Aerial Bombing Kills 3-Year-Old Girl, Wounds Mother in Nuba Mountains

Two others injured, church compound damaged.

Sudanese Air Force bomber. (Nuba Reports)

Sudanese Air Force bomber. (Nuba Reports)

JUBA, South Sudan (Morning Star News) – A Sudanese Air Force bomb on Monday (May 25) killed a 3-year-old girl and wounded her Christian mother at their home in Kauda, South Kordofan state, sources said.

In the latest civilian death in nearly 3,500 government bombings of civilian targets since April 2012, Kaka Abdu Kuku Tiral died after the bomb hit outside her home while her mother, Hamida Osman of the Sudanese Church of Christ, sustained a head injury, aid workers said.

Kauda is the political capital of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army-North (SPLA-N), but there is no military installation near Osman’s house, they said. The area’s predominantly black ethnic Nuba people believe that since South Sudan split from Sudan in a 2011 referendum, the government’s goal of quashing SPLA-N rebels is also meant to rid the area of non-Arabs and Christianity.

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir has said post-secession Sudan will adhere more exclusively to Islam and Arabic culture.

The warplanes on Monday (May 25) also targeted the compound of the Roman Catholic Diocese of El Obeid in Kauda, damaging windows and doors of a church facility there, the sources told Morning Star News.

Government planes hit another civilian area of Kauda on Thursday (May 27) at about noon, wounding two people, they said. Salah Ismail sustained a back injury, and Fatina Fadul was injured on her right leg, though it was not broken, the source told Morning Star News.

“As we talk now, the warplanes are flying over the area, causing a lot of panic among the population,” an eyewitness in Kauda told Morning Star News. “It had been calm for some months, but the renewed aerial bombardment is causing fear among the people.”

Sudan has dropped 3,740 bombs on civilian targets since April 2012, according to Nuba Reports. On Feb. 6 one of them killed a Christian woman who was nine months pregnant, a relative said. Naheed Saeed Komi, a 25-year-old mother of a 3-year-old boy, was walking from her home in Tangali village, Dalami County in South Kordofan state, to fetch water when a bomb from a Sudanese Air Force plane hit nearby, killing her instantly, said her sister on condition of anonymity.

Komi was an ethnic Nuba woman who was a member of the Sudanese Church of Christ. There was no military presence or installation in the area where she was killed, another source said.

A Christian girl, Nour Kalowas of the Sudanese Church of Christ, was also reported to have been killed in the same bombing. Three others were seriously injured.

On Oct. 6, 2014, Sudan dropped bombs on Heiban, South Kordofan that killed six Christian children. Sudanese Air Force bombs destroyed an Episcopal Church of Sudan (now officially called the Province of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan and Sudancomplex on Oct. 10 in Tabolo, South Kordofan, church leaders said.

Thousands of civilians have taken refuge in Nuba Mountain caves in South Kordofan, which borders South Sudan.

The Nuba people have longstanding complaints against Khartoum – including neglect, oppression and forced conversions to Islam in a 1990s jihad – but as Sudanese citizens on the northern side of the border, they were never given the option of secession in the 2005 peace pact between northern and southern Sudan.

The rebels in the Nuba Mountains were formerly involved with the southern Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) forces fighting Khartoum before the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA). Fighting between Sudan and South Sudan broke out in June 2011, when Khartoum forcefully attempted to disarm the SPLA-N in South Kordofan by force rather than awaiting a process of disarmament as called for in the CPA. When the CPA was signed in 2005, the people of South Kordofan were to vote on whether to join the north or the south, but the state governor suspended the process.

Sudan’s bombing of civilian targets in the country’s Nuba Mountains in May and June last year killed at least 10 Christians, sources told Morning Star News. Four children and an elderly woman were among the victims of bombings. Church leaders and aid workers told Morning Star News that Sudan’s bombings of civilian areas in its war with the SPLA-N killed 14-year-old Abdo al Nour and Abdel Rahman Hassan, 15, in the village of Um Serdiba on June 13.

In the same area on May 20, 2014, according to the sources who requested anonymity, a Sudanese Air Force bombing killed 30-year-old Kimmia Calals of the Sudanese Church of Christ, leaving her nursing child motherless.

On June 17 in Tabalo village, a Sudanese bomb from an Antonov plane killed Yasin Salah, 16, and another minor, Ado al Sawaq, the sources said. On June 11 in the same village in Um Dorain County, 80-year-old Amira Ballula was killed when a plane dropped a bomb on her house, they said.

The bombing of civilian targets in South Kordofan state in May 2014 targeted the region’s only hospital and damaged an orphanage school and a relief agency, sources said. In Um Serdiba on May 18, 2014, Sife El Deen Ibrahim, 40, was killed immediately when a bomb from an Antonov jet hit the Christian’s house, an area church member requesting anonymity told Morning Star News.

Ibrahim left a widow and four children, ages 12, 15, 17 and 20, who were dependent on him for their livelihood, she said.

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