Withdrawal from Abu Karshola, South Kordofan, 'tactical': Rebels

May 27, 2013 (Sudan Vision)

The withdrawal of Sudanese Revolutionary Front (SRF) forces from Abu Karshola on Monday was 'tactical'.

Speaking to Radio Dabanga from the field, SRF spokesman Abu al-Qasim Imam El Haj said that the rebel forces "consciously withdrew from Abu Karshola for tactical and humanitarian reasons".

El Haj emphasised that "the withdrawal was not the result of any battle or confrontation with government forces," but rather to relieve the civilian population from what he termed "a complicated humanitarian situation".

"The SRF leadership decided to withdraw from Abu Karshola to save the population from further suffering," he said. "The economic blockade imposed on citizens by the government has caused much hardship. This is aggravated as the government does not distinguish between civilian and military targets. They employ a 'scorched earth' policy and use the Sudanese Air Force to bomb civilians, targeting them with deadly weapons."

El Haj explained that the SRF withdrawal from the town is designed to remove the incentive for the government "to repeat the crimes of genocide committed by the regime in Darfur and South Kordofan".

He reiterated that towns like Abu Karshola are not considered objectives by the rebels, but that they are 'stepping stones' on the road to Khartoum, where the objective is to overthrow the El Bashir regime.

"The government claims of 'recapturing' Abu Karshola are pure lies and propaganda." Al Haj concluded. "It is just a desperate attempt for Khartoum to raise morale in order to cover up the repeated defeats suffered by government forces".


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