A new report from the Satellite Sentinel Project and the Enough Project reveals that civilians in South Kordofan, Sudan continue to bear the brunt of the recent escalation in hostilities between the rebel Sudan Revolutionary Front, or SRF, in this case comprised of forces from the Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement-North, or SPLM-N and the Darfurian Justice and Equality Movement, or JEM, and the government Sudan Armed Forces, or SAF. Recent fighting over control of the strategically located Nuba Mountains towns of Abu Kershola and Ad Dandour began in mid-April, when the Sudan People’s Liberation Army-North, or SPLA-N, rebel group overran SAF garrisons at Ad Dandour.
The report, “Civilians Caught in the Crossfire: The Bombing of Abu Kershola and Ad Dandour,” DigitalGlobe satellite imagery confirms the destruction of a marketplace and civilian residential areas in Abu Kershola, a strategic garrison town in South Kordofan, which has become a symbol of the war raging on Sudan’s periphery. Satellite imagery from May 15, analyzed for the Satellite Sentinel Project, or SSP, by DigitalGlobe’s Analytics Center, shows 20 craters – including four apparently caused by artillery shelling and 16 consistent with aerial bombardment – along with damage to and destruction of civilian infrastructure in Abu Kershola. DigitalGlobe imagery taken on April 22 and released by SSP indicates that the fighting led to the burning of civilian infrastructure in Ad Dandour, where a three-day battle took place from April 15-17.
Nuba Reports, a group of Sudanese citizen journalists who traveled to the area during a lull in hostilities, confimed the imagery and eyewitness reports.