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Surma

Tribes

The Suri people live in the southwestern plains of Ethiopia

Surma, also known as the Suri people live in the southwestern plains of Ethiopia near the Omo River and Omo National Park.   Cattles are important to the Suri, giving them status.  The more cattle a tribesman has, the wealthier they are. In order for a man to marry women in the Suri tribe, he must own at least 60 cattle. 

The Suri are very much like the Mursi tribe and practice the same traditions.  The women wear lip plates that are made out of clay.  The men in the tribe fight with sticks called Dongas.  Both the men and women blemish their bodies.  If you see a Suri man with a scar, it usually means that he has killed a member of a rival tribe.

A sport and ritual the Suri take extremely seriously is stick fighting (Donga fighting). In most cases, stick fighting is done so young men can find wives. It is a way for young men to prove themselves to the young women. To the Suri, the ideal time to stick fight is just after it rains. The fights are held between Suri villages, and the fights begin with 20 to 30 people on each side. Of these 20 to 30 people, all get a chance to fight one on one against someone from the other side. During these fights there are referees present to make sure all rules are being followed. Many stick fights end within the first couple of hits.

Suri tribes.

Stick fighting (Donga) in , Surma (Suri tribe), Ethiopia.

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