According to Suri oral tradition, they came to their present territory near Mount Naita about 200 years ago from the banks of the Nile River. First they came to the Akobo (eastwards from the Nile). Then the Meyun clan (part of the Suri at the time) went south to settle at Boma while the remaining Suri traveled across the border and settled at Koma. Around 1890, the Suri were constantly harassed by the Amhara, Gimira and Tirma. As a result of this harassment, numerous Suri were forced to join the Meoun clan (at Meyun). In 1925, not long after this incident, the Suri settled on the Boma Plateau.
The Suri is not the only tribe in the south of Ethiopia. There are around twelve more, and all are surrounded by tension. Each tribe has its own share of weapons, making battles more violent. The Suri have one primary enemy, the Nyangatom. On a regular basis the Nyangatom and another enemy of the Suri, the Toposa, team up to raid the Suri’s cattle. The Second Sudanese Civil War has also taken a toll on the Suri. This conflict has pushed neighboring tribes into Suri’s land and is a constant competition to keep what they have. Gun battles are most common during the dry season. Around this time the Suri move their cattle down south to find new ground. State authorities have been attempting to create awareness about legal ways of conflict resolution but this might take long effort before achieving a transformed culture.
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