Government attacks on Darfur villages, ostensibly directed at rebel fighters, have caused a new exodus of at least 12,000 people from western Sudan into Chad, the BBC reports. The government acknowledges bombing three villages Friday, but said it was targeting fighters from the Justice and Equality Movement. Rebel leaders denied their people were in those villages.
Human Rights Watch said 150 people were killed in the raids, though many expected the toll to top 200. "Most are tribal leaders or teachers or people working for the state," one tribal leader told Reuters, while another added: "If someone kills the leadership of the tribe they mean to wipe it out completely." Officials warn that tensions along the Chad-Sudan border could explode.