In Darfur: A Travel Diary (Day 12)

In Darfur: A Travel Diary (Day 12)

Editor's Note: In March, Kurt Pelda, Africa Bureau Chief of the Swiss daily the Neue Zürcher Zeitung (NZZ), traveled to eastern Chad on the border with the Sudanese crisis region of Darfur: a trip that was documented in a diary published in English on World Politics Review and that would see him eventually turning back from the border due to inadequate security conditions. In late October, Pelda returned to the region and crossed the border into Darfur, where he accompanied a Darfur rebel group. The diary of his trip was published on the NZZ Online in German, and World Politics Review here presents it in English.

Women in the Market, and Arabs
The Benefits of Satellite Navigation Systems

It is early in the morning and battles cries and the singing of soldiers are already blaring from the rebels' cassette recorder. The recording of yesterday's parade will follow us throughout the day: the rebel fighters want to listen to it over and over again. It is time to pack up the solar panels and the mosquito netting and to swap my sandals for desert boots. We will soon be setting off on our journey back to the border. But before we do, General Tarrada wants to show us the market in Nyalma, a small town to the southwest of Korma, the ghost town. On the way, we pass tobacco fields and vegetable gardens that are watered by hand. An old man uses a crank to raise water up from a well. Apart from the omnipresent millet fields, with the watermelons growing among the millet stalks, there are also sesame fields to be seen now and then. Darfur is known for its sesame oil.

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