Sudan declares killing of top rebel leader
By Rizwan Khatik - Mon Dec 26, 8:08 am
The army said Khalil Ibrahim, who led the Darfur-based Justice and Equality Movement, or JEM, was killed during a military offensive in North Kordofan state to retaliate for a deadly rebel attack there on Saturday. JEM is the most organized and effective military force in Darfur, the western region torn by conflict since 2003. JEM did not join a peace deal signed last year between other Darfur rebel groups and Sudanese President Omar Bashir’s government in Khartoum.
On Saturday SUNA, quoting army spokesman Sawarmi Khaled Saad, said the military was combing the North Kordofan-North Darfur border area after JEM “attacked civilians” and targeted local leaders while looting their property in the Umm-Gozain, Goz Abyadh and Aramal areas.
Alhough he was an active member of the Islamic movement in Sudan since his early age, Khalil Ibrahim was killed at the hands of the Government who raises Islamic slogans. Khalil Ibrahim was born in a North Darfur village near the border with Chad. He belonged to the Zaghawa tribe, which resides in Sudan and neighboring Chad.
Khalil Ibrahim, who studied medicine at the University of Khartoum, worked as a doctor in Sudan and Saudi Arabia. He was not a prominent figure in the Islamic movement before June 30, 1989 coup that brought the movement to power.
But after the coup, and in the early years of the rule of President Omar al-Bashir, Khalil Ibrahim emerged as a military commander who led the war in southern Sudan, as the commander of the Mujahideen.