West Darfur/Masalit tagging

Hi all,

Not my region of expertise, so asking the wider community.

I noticed that a new country had appeared on the map. The admin_level has been changed in relation 3774664 to =2.

This seems to be incorrect and has been queried in the changeset.

The name of the region (in several languages) was also recently changed by the same mapper. I’ve personally never heard of Masalit State and a quick search doesnt reveal much either (except about the ethnic group of people who live there). West Darfur appears to be the (English) name for this state. Should this also be reverted?

this def should be reverted this doesn’t have anything to do with the conflict going on in sudan either since the state isnt in any unique situation from the rest of the darfur states which are labeled correctly i highly suspect that this is a wrongful act of the user

According to the Wikipedia article @Casey_boy included it appears to be a valid entity. Whether it considers itself part of Sudan is a whole another story.

Seeing as the admin_level=2 change doesn’t seem supported by any international sources, and seeing as this is a major issue map-wise (i.e. a new country appearing), I’m going to revert back to admin_level=4 as the default.

Edit: done.

As for the name, I still cannot find any authoritative sources to suggest this should be anything other than West Darfur but I will leave that for now.

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It got changed back by the same editor with no engagement. I’ll flag with DWG.

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Googling “West Darfur” shows various news about conflicts in the area in the previous months, especially in the capital El Geneina. Maybe that’s somewhat related to the “country” status given here.

After speaking to the mapper concerned, they have agreed with the change back to level 4.

I have suggested that they join in the conversation here concerning other features such as villages etc

Graeme Fitzpatrick

OSMF Data Working Group

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Hello community, if you are not from this region, please do not change anything what I made the changes, and if you are from Dar Massalit (west Darfur), contact me. I will share the sources from which I got the data. Thank you.

Hello Hassan, and welcome!

For the avoidance of doubt, OpenStreetMap is a global database. We have to agree about what to call things globally - at least when it comes to to high-level administrative divisions like countries. Often there will need to be discussions, but we’ll need to discuss and agree on a compromise in all cases since there is just one set of OSM data globally.


The Indigenous people have already decided what they want to call their things globally; we don’t have a choice, just accept it as they agreed, and if you want to confirm, you can download the Atlas of West Darfur PDF DRAFT from HIC-darfur our Dar Massalit atlas for School from masarak.org

No, it’s a bit more nuanced that that. This is the OSMF policy on disputed territories. You’re welcome to explain why you think that admin_level=2(a “country”) is appropriate here, but as I said above, where there is a disagreement we have to discuss and come to a compromise.

– Andy (from OSM’s Data Working Group, as is @Fizzie41 above)