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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Black Hole of Kosti: The Murder of Baggara Detainees by Shaigi Police in a Kosti Barracks, Sudan 1956
Author:Beswick, Stephanie F.
Periodical:Northeast African Studies
Geographic term:Sudan
Politics and Government
History and Exploration
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Law, Human Rights and Violence
Ethnic and Race Relations
External link:http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/northeast_african_studies/v002/2.1.beswick.pdf
Abstract:1956 was an explosive year in the Sudan. Barely six weeks of independence had passed when tensions exploded; 194 Baggara detainees were murdered by Shaigi police at a barracks in Kosti in the Gezira. The immediate incident that led up to the tragedy at Kosti was a battle which took place on a private plantation, Goda, in the southern region of the Gezira. Based on oral information from Douglas Beswick, the inspector of the plantation of Goda, and his wife, this paper covers the events directly preceding the Kosti massacre by describing the circumstances of the battle of Goda leading to the arrest and murder of the farmers. There was a large movement in the Gezira which culminated in a general strike against the government. In this atmosphere of confrontation, there was a strong feeling among the tenants at Goda that the money owed to them by the cotton company was not going to be paid. As the stridency increased, the police broke all the strikes on all the plantations in the northern Gezira, forcing the strike organizers south. As the southernmost plantation, Goda became the climactic battlefield of the strikers. Hundreds of strikers were arrested and brought to the prison at Kosti on 21 February. 194 of them were found dead the following morning. The author argues that the murder of these men was an act of ethnic vengeance by Shaigi police in response to the deaths of their comrades at the battle of Goda. Bibliogr., notes, ref.