Paramilitary forces in Sudan’s Darfur have mutinied, the interior ministry said on Sunday, as a United States diplomat said security in the troubled western region is worsening.
“A small group from the Central Reserve Police started a mutiny,” the ministry said in a statement carried by the official SUNA news agency.
It said the mutineers were from the West Darfur state unit of the special police and were based in the capital El Geneina near the Chadian border.
They “started firing their guns in the air”, panicking residents, before fleeing southwest, the ministry said.
It added that there were no casualties and Sudan’s army was in pursuit.
Although Darfur has endured a decade of violence including government-rebel fighting, tribal clashes and other unrest, a mutiny is a rare event in the region which is about the size of France.
Earlier Sunday the U.S. charge d’affaires to Sudan, Joseph Stafford, told reporters: “We’re worried about the deteriorating security situation in Darfur and the conflict between the government forces and the militia.”