Darfur: UN condemns deadly attack on peacekeepers protecting civilians in Muhajeria

Report
from UN News Service
Published on 19 Apr 2013 View Original

19 April 2013 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the African Union-United Nations peacekeeping mission in Darfur are calling on authorities in Sudan to find attackers who killed at least one blue helmet earlier today in what is considered a war crime under international law.

The Secretary-General “condemns in the strongest terms those responsible for the attack and calls on the authorities to immediately hold the perpetrators criminally accountable,” his spokesperson said in a statement.

According to the African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID), “In the early morning hours of 19 April, one peacekeeper of the African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) was shot dead and two others injured in an attack by unidentified assailants on the mission's team site near Muhajeria.”

The peacekeeper killed was a Nigerian national. The Secretary-General offered his “deepest condolences” to the Government of Nigeria and to the family and colleagues of the fallen peacekeeper.

UNAMID said that it was investigating the events surrounding the incident and working in coordination with Government of Sudan to ensure that the perpetrators are brought to justice.

The Mission reiterated that “any attack on international peacekeepers is a crime under international law.”

Meanwhile, an estimated 18,000 displaced persons remain concentrated around the Mission’s team sites near the village of Muhajeria, in the vicinity of today’s attack, and in Labado village. The groups have gathered since 6 April, when fighting broke out between the Government forces and the Sudan Liberation Movement/Minni Minawi.

Mr. Ban, who has joined other senior UN officials in calling for humanitarian access to assist the groups, today stressed that he is deeply concerned about the movement restrictions and called on authorities for “full and unhindered access to civilians in need of assistance.”