Statement by the spokesperson of EU High Representative Catherine Ashton on the 10th anniversary of the beginning of the Darfur conflict

“On what is widely regarded as the tenth anniversary of the crisis in Darfur, the High Representative reaffirms the EU's commitment to continue to help the people of Darfur and to work for a comprehensive, just and inclusive peace in Darfur.

The High Representative is deeply concerned that, after ten years, fighting and killing continues and millions of Darfuris are still internally displaced persons (IDPs) or refugees. New generations of children have grown up in miserable conditions in IDP and refugee camps. In the last few weeks, a further 100,000 people are reported to have been displaced as a result of tribal conflict.

There are still reports of serious human rights violations and restrictions on access for peacekeepers and humanitarians. Aerial bombing and attacks on civilian areas continue, in violation of UN Security Council resolutions.

The EU has provided substantial humanitarian assistance for the people of Darfur since the beginning of the crisis. The EU is giving strong support to UNAMID and is working closely with international partners to support a comprehensive, just and inclusive peace process that can lay the foundation for socio-economic development. The Doha Document for Peace in Darfur was a positive step forward and a good framework for reconciliation but implementation has been disappointingly slow. The High Representative appeals to the Government of Sudan and all rebel groups to re-double their efforts to reach a settlement through dialogue, building on the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur.”