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Land grabbing along livestock migration routes in Gadarif State, Sudan: impacts on pastoralism and the environment

There is a growing realisation amongst ecologists and economists that mobile pastoralists are the best custodians of drylands environments. However, grabbing of pastoralists’ traditional land for the commercial farming, which has widely been adopted as a development and investment strategy in Sudan, is increasing both resource conflict and environmental degradation. This research aims to provide evidence-based information by mapping out the encroachment of large-scale agriculture into transhumance migration routes in Gadarif State in eastern Sudan. First, land‐use/land‐cover change was tracked using satellite imagery. Second, pastoralists were interviewed to obtain information about their perspectives on the major problems facing them. The study finds that state policy has failed to provide support to pastoralists. Moreover, due to the abolition of their native administrative system and lack of education, pastoralists have no way of influencing decisions that impact their system.