Umm Ruwaba

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Umm Ruwaba
Umm Ruwaba is located in Sudan
Umm Ruwaba
Umm Ruwaba
Location in Sudan
Coordinates: 12°54′16.41″N 31°12′28.32″E / 12.9045583°N 31.2078667°E / 12.9045583; 31.2078667Coordinates: 12°54′16.41″N 31°12′28.32″E / 12.9045583°N 31.2078667°E / 12.9045583; 31.2078667
Country  Sudan
State North Kurdufan
District Umm Ruwaba
Time zone EAT (UTC+3)

Umm Ruwaba, also Umm Ruwabah (أم روابة, Ruaba and Umm Ruaba), is a city in the state of North Kurdufan in Sudan and is the capital of the Umm Ruwabah District. By road it is located 147 kilometres (91 mi) southeast of El Obeid, and 184 kilometres (114 mi) west of Rabak.[1] Founded by the Ottoman Empire in 1820, it is at the junction of important roads and camel caravan routes.[2]


On 27 April 2013, the town was attacked by the Sudanese Revolutionary Front, a rebel alliance. The government was able to 'contain' the attack, but sparked local protests over lack of security in the region.[3]


Umm Ruwaba lies in southern central Sudan in the semi-arid region of the Sahel. It has an average annual precipitation of 300 to 450 millimeters.[4] Local aquifers are considered to be productive and are the source of water for many wells in the region.[5][6] Water is typically extracted from depths of 300 to 400 ft, although some boreholes have been dug as far as 1000 ft.[7] Geologically it lies in the Tertiary-Quaternary Umm Ruwaba Basin, composed mainly of fine-grained lacustrine and fluviatile sediments.[8][9][10]


Lying in this part of the Sahel, Umm Ruwaba is prone to recurring periods of drought, land degradation and famine. The famine of 1983–1985 had a severe impact on the area and caused food riots in the city.[11] Its principal crops are millet and sorghum for home consumption, and sesame for sale in the local markets, and the city is an important storage area for many farmers in the district.[12] The Sudan Roads and Bridges Department has been looking to improve road communications between the city and El Obeid.[13]

Demographics and religion[edit]

The main ethnic groups in the city are Gawamma and Shanabla peoples. Traditionally it is an Islamic area,[14] but a 1980 report documented that an anti-Islamic organisation had converted some 40 families in Umm Ruwaba from Islam to Christianity.[15]

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ Google (13 April 2013). "Umm Ruwaba" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  2. ^ Lavergné, Marc (1989). Le Soudan contemporain: De l'invasion turco-égyptienne à la rébellion africaine (1821-1989). KARTHALA Editions. p. 36. ISBN 978-2-86537-222-5. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  3. ^
  4. ^ Khogali, Mustafa M. (Aug 1991). "Famine, Desertification and Vulnerable Populations: The Case of Umm Ruwaba District, Kordofan Region, Sudan". Ambio. Springer, accessed via JSTOR. 20: 204–206. JSTOR 4313823. 
  5. ^ Geological Survey Water-supply Paper. U.S. Government Printing Office. 1968. p. 117. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  6. ^ Water-supply Paper. U.S. Government Printing Office. 1968. p. 128. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  7. ^ Imām, Fayṣal Bashīr (1972). Sudan path to self-sufficiency. Maʼhad al-Dirāsat al-Iḍafīyah, Jāmiʻat al-Khartūm. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  8. ^ Shahin, Mamdouh (2007). Water resources and hydrometeorology of the Arab region. Springer. p. 50. ISBN 978-1-4020-5414-3. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  9. ^ Jāmiʻat al-Kuwayt. Kullīyat al-ʻUlūm (1988). The Journal of the University of Kuwait, Science. Faculty of Science, University of Kuwait. p. 348. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  10. ^ Sudan. University of Gezira; National Research Council (U.S.). Board on Science and Technology for International Development (1979). Aquatic weed management: integrated control techniques for the Gezira irrigation scheme : report of a workshop, 3-6 December 1978. National Academies. p. 36. NAP:14401. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  11. ^ Waal, Alex De (1997). Famine Crimes: Politics & [and] the Disaster Relief Industry in Africa. African Rights & the International African Institute. p. 103. ISBN 978-0-85255-810-2. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  12. ^ Hassan, Salah; Ray, Carina (2009). Darfur and the crisis of governance in Sudan: a critical reader. Cornell University Press. p. 80. ISBN 978-0-8014-7594-8. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  13. ^ Shea, Gerald P (23 January 2009). Jerry, Catch Your Plane on Time: Travels to the Middle East and Beyond. iUniverse. p. 72. ISBN 978-1-4401-1201-0. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  14. ^ Joseph, Suad; Naǧmābādī, Afsāna (2003). Encyclopedia of Women and Islamic Cultures, Volume 3: Family, Body, Sexuality and Health. BRILL. p. 539. ISBN 978-90-04-12819-4. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  15. ^ Sudanow. Ministry of Culture and Information. 1980. p. 10. Retrieved 13 April 2013.