Janjaweed ditches horseback to launch attacks from 4x4s

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The Independent Online

Arab Janjaweed militias behind much of the violence in Sudan's Darfur region during the past three years are now launching attacks on civilians from vehicles rather than horses, Amnesty International says.

Amnesty said it had received evidence that Janjaweed militants raided the village of Shek Gubah on Monday using 4x4 vehicles, known as "technicals", similar to those favoured by the Taliban. At least 41 civilians were killed in the raids.

The news comes just a day after the UN was forced to evacuate all non-essential staff from El-Fasher, a major town in north Darfur, amid soaring violence between Janjaweed militias and armed rebel units.

More than 200,000 people have been killed and almost three million have fled their homes since 2003 when ethnic African tribes revolted against the Arab-led Khartoum government.

Meanwhile, the Institute for Public Policy Research, a left-leaning think-tank, has heavily criticised Britain and other Nato countries for failing to enforce a no-fly zone over Darfur in compliance with UN Security Council Resolution 1591.