Sudan warns relief agencies to comply with regulations

News and Press Release
Originally published
News Article by DPA on February 12, 2000 at 13:19:17:

Khartoum (dpa) - The government on Saturday warned humanitarian agencies operating in Sudan not to violate the regulations governing their work in the war-affected south.

Speaking at a news conference in Khartoum, Humanitarian Aid Commissioner Sulaf al-Din called on the United Nations to see to it that the agencies respected the terms of the agreement signed between the government, the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) and the U.N.

The agreement obliges the government and the SPLA to allow the agencies to extend relief services to needy people in the war zones under U.N. auspices. This arrangement became known as "Operation Lifeline Sudan".

The Sudanese government complains that some of the agencies involved in this operation are giving logistical support to the SPLA.

This problem was highlighted last week when a pro-government militia force detained a U.N. aircraft complaining that some of their officers were carried away by a World Food Programme plane to areas controlled by a rival faction.

After negotiations between the U.N. and the militiamen for nearly one week the aircraft and the four persons on board were released on Thursday.

The U.N. office in Khartoum on Saturday confirmed the release of the hostages at Fangak nearly 750 kilometres south of Khartoum.

The hostages included a United States national working with the U.N. Children's Fund (UNICEF), two Kenyans employed by the U.N. as pilots and a southern Sudanese working with the Relief Association of Southern Sudan (RASS) belonging to a rebel movement.

The U.N. statement said the U.N. and the Sudanese government had agreed to investigate the circumstances that led to the detention of the aircraft and passengers.

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