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  • Writer's pictureSudan Witness

Properties on fire in the village of Al Takma, South Kordofan

Updated: Feb 16

لقراءة المقال بالعربية

Properties on fire in the village of Al Takma, South Kordofan_احتراق عقارات في قرية التكمة
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Al Takma [12.0017219, 29.74927185]

Figure 1: Location of Al Takma

Summary: 

  • On 5 December 2023, human rights organisation Darfur Victim Support (DVS) posted a video to X (formerly Twitter) showing several properties on fire in the village of Al Takma, South Kordofan.

  • A group of men were seen walking past the destruction, some of whom were wearing Rapid Support Forces (RSF) uniforms 

  • Sudan Witness geolocated the video to the centre of the village and verified that the incident took place on 5 December using NASA Fire Information for Resource Management System (FIRMS) data and Planet satellite imagery. 


Violent clashes between the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the RSF have resulted in the destruction of homes and properties across Sudan. Sudan Witness has been closely monitoring online content to verify these incidents, since the outbreak of the conflict in April 2023.


On 5 December 2023, DVS posted a video to X (formerly Twitter) of men celebrating and firing guns as they walked through a village, where multiple properties were on fire (Figure 2). The description of the post states that the video was taken in Al Takma, South Kordofan.


Figure 2: A screenshot from a video shared by the Darfur Victim Support organisation showing the village of Al Takma burning. Source: X (formerly Twitter)

Sudan Witness geolocated the footage to the main road running through the village of Al Takma (figure 3).  


Figure 3: Geolocation of the video showing Al Takma on fire [12.0017219,29.74927185]. Source: Google Earth

The incident took place on 5 December 2023. Sudan Witness confirmed the date using NASA FIRMS data, which showed 17 heat signatures over Al Takma on this date (figure 4). Planet satellite imagery also confirmed that there were fires in Al Takma on 5 December 2023, showing smoke rising from a cluster of houses on the northern side of the village. Dark marks visible on the ground also further confirmed fire damage (figure 5).


Figure 4: NASA FIRMS data showing at least 17 heat signatures over the village of Al Takma on 5 December 2023. Source: NASA FIRMS

Figure 5: Planet satellite imagery of Al Takma village. An active fire and fire damage is visible on 5 December 2023 (circled, red) Source: Planet

Some of the men featured in the video were wearing RSF uniforms. On one of the uniforms, a patch reading ‘Rapid Support Forces’ (قوات الدعم السريع) in Arabic could be identified, alongside a Sudan flag patch and RSF insignia on the shoulders (figure 6).


Figure 6: A Rapid Support Forces tag on the front of a uniform seen in the footage (left, circled) and RSF patches identified on the arms of the uniform also seen on the RSF X (formerly Twitter) page (middle and right) Sources: X (formerly Twitter) and X (formerly Twitter)

As such, Sudan Witness assessed that it is likely that the RSF or affiliated militia were involved in the incident.

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