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Here is a paragraph from an article I just read:

Im Zuge des geplanten Übergangs zu einer zivilen Führung des Landes sollten die Paramilitärs in die regulären Streitkräfte eingegliedert werden, was zu Spannungen führte. Daglo unterstellt al-Burhan, sein Amt als De-Facto-Staatschef nicht aufgeben zu wollen. Die RSF behaupteten am späten Samstagabend bei Twitter, 90 Prozent der vom Militär kontrollierten Gebiete im Sudan übernommen zu haben und in die Kommandozentrale der Armee eingedrungen zu sein. Die Armee wies dies als Lüge zurück. Wer in der Hauptstadt zurzeit die Oberhand hat, ist unklar.

source: https://www.tagesschau.de/ausland/sudan-gefechte-105.html

I don't understand what the bold marked sentence means.

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  • 1
    Every question and answer on stackexchange must be fully understandable even if links to external pages are broken. Therefore, I have inserted the relevant passages together with the necessary context in your question. Apr 16 at 6:18
  • @planetmaker: Why did you change the title of this question from English to German? Now this question looks as if it was asked in German. The original title was »Someone unterstellt someone else«. It makes clear: 1. The questioner wants to communicate in English. 2. The questioner has troubles with the German word »unterstellen«. Apr 16 at 15:26
  • 2
    'Someone unterstellt someone else' is IMHO a mix of languages within one expression so that it is detrimental to understanding. I made another edit so that the language of the question remains clear. Apr 16 at 22:03
  • @Planetmaker bad choice: "How to" is answered by "etymology", but OP is clearly not there for that if they are unable to work with a dictionary definition. The simplest solution would be quote marks in the original title, no?
    – vectory
    Apr 18 at 20:30

2 Answers 2

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You can find definitions with examples on Wiktionary. "al-Burhan" is a name and your Dativ object, and the subordinate clause is an infinitive clause which serves as your Akkusativ object. Wiktionary's 2nd definition fits:

  1. (transitive or intransitive, + dative object) to allege that someone has done something; to accuse someone of a misdeed

    Er unterstellt mir, dass ich das Geld gestohlen hätte.

     He alleges that I stole the money.
    

    Er unterstellt mir einen Diebstahl.

     He accuses me of theft.
    

Therefore, Daglo accuses alBurhan of not wanting to resign.

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The usual pattern for the verb unterstellen is this:

Jemand unterstellt jemandem etwas.
Someone insinuates something to someone else.

Der Staatsanwalt unterstellt dem Angeklagten einen Mord.
The prosecutor insinuates a murder to the defendant.
(The prosecutor alleges that the defendant committed murder.)

An alternative pattern is this:

Jemand unterstellt jemandem, <Nebensatz>.
Someone insinuates to someone <subordiante clause>.

Der Staatsanwalt unterstellt dem Angeklagten, einen Mord begangen zu haben.
The prosecutor insinuates to the defendant to have committed a murder.
(The prosecutor alleges that the defendant committed murder.)

Daglo unterstellt al-Burhan, sein Amt als De-Facto-Staatschef nicht aufgeben zu wollen.
Daglo insinuates to al-Burhan that he does not want to give up his post as de facto head of state. (Daglo insinuates that al-Burhan does not want to give up his post as de facto head of state.)

  • jemand
    In English: someone
    In the example sentence: Daglo (name of a person in nominative case)
    Subject and therefore in nominative case.
    It names the person who makes an assertion.
  • unterstellt (a grammatical form of unterstellen)
    In English: to presume, to assume, to imply, to insinuate
    The verb of the sentence
    It names the kind of action.
  • jemandem (a grammatical form of jemand)
    In English: to someone else
    Object in dative case.
    In the example sentence: al-Burhan (name of a person in dative case which in this example looks identical to nominative case)
    It names the person who is claimed to be responsible for something.
  • etwas
    In English: something
    An object in accusative case.
    It names the thing that the person in dative case is claimed to be responsible for.
  • <Nebensatz>
    A subordinate clause.
    In the example sentence: sein Amt als De-Facto-Staatschef nicht aufgeben zu wollen (The assumption that Daglo makes about al-Burhan.)
    It describes the thing that the person in dative case is claimed to be responsible for.

Yes you are right, in the other sentence is an error. This would be correct:

Unklar war zunächst, wer die Schüsse abgegeben hat.

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