Sudan

United Nations Sudan Situation Report 23 Jun 2005

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Key Developments
  • SRSG Pronk met today with VP Taha to exchange views on the state of the Abuja negotiations and the situation in Eastern Sudan.

  • On 22 and 23 June, two Joint Implementation Mechanism (JIM) missions visited North and South Darfur. The JIM missions comprise high-level representatives of GoS, the UN and the donor community. In North Darfur, one mission visited Abu-Shouk and Al-Salaam camps on 22 June, and had meetings with the Wali, the AU Deputy Force Commander, and with representatives of the humanitarian community. On 23 June, the mission visited Kebkabiya and Kutum. In South Darfur, the second JIM mission visited Kalma camp, and had meetings with the Wali, representatives of GoS and the humanitarian community, during which problems related to SGBV received central attention. On 23 June, the mission visited Kass and Sani Deleiba/Abu Ajura.

  • On 22 June, SRSG Pronk and PDSRSG Zerihoun met with Ugandan Foreign Minister Kutesa and Minister of Defence Mbabazi in Kampala. They discussed current developments in the Sudanese peace process, the security situation along the Sudanese-Ugandan border, and the activities of the LRA.
Security Issues

North Darfur

Two national staff members of an INGO, who went missing on 20 June while travelling to Abu Sinet (southeast of Korma) have been detained, presumably by the SLA. The two staff members were stopped by armed men and then driven in the direction of Kunjura (10 km NE of Tawilla). OCHA has received assurances from the SLA that the two staff members will be released soon.

On 21 June, a convoy of seven UN hired commercial trucks en route from El Fasher to Kutum with food supply was stopped by seven unidentified armed men. The incident took place between Kafod and Kutum. The men forced the trucks to proceed to a location near Lumbati (5 km NE Kafod) where the seven men and the villagers looted the entire payload of the trucks. Identity of perpetrators is not yet known. Drivers were released unharmed. They then returned safely to El Fasher.

On 22 June, UNMIS received a report that armed tribesmen beat 10 women who were collecting firewood in the area south of Shoba Mansour.

On 15 June, the Deputy SLA Commander claimed that the armed tribesmen from Um Sayala village stole 81 sheep and goats and similar incident occurred on 20 June whereby the same armed group stole 160 animals from the village.

On 22 June, the residents of Misri village filed a complaint alleging an attack on the village by armed tribesmen. Seven civilians were reported wounded during the attack.

GoS police lodged a complaint with the AU against an SLA attack of a police station in Bisaro village on 9 June in which one person was killed, two injured and a number of weapons captured.

South Darfur

On 22 June, reports were received that police and military forces had established a blockade around Manawashe village and the IDP camps since the previous day. Consequently, people have had no access to the market, watering point, flour mills, and other services from outside the camps. GoS security forces made house to house searches for weapons, and what the IDPs thought could be elements from the rebel movements. It is also reported that some people were arrested, and many others were badly beaten.

On 21 June, armed bandits looted 85 cows from the Rezegat/Bani Halba in Gasa village. The tribesmen pursued them resulting in fighting two hours later. Three of the bandits were killed. It is believed that the looted cattle were sent to Tabal Diat, a village 40 km SW of Nyala. Reports further indicate that the Rezegat and Banihalba tribes in the area are mobilizing to attack the village to retrieve their cattle.

On 22 June, a resident of Dereig IDPs Camp stabbed a security guard at the Camp's HAC office and a female bystander to death during a misunderstanding over food distribution. He stabbed the man three times and the woman twice. Both died. The suspect has been arrested and is currently in Nyala police cells.

On 21 June, reports indicate that five women collecting firewood outside Kalma camp were abducted and raped.

On 21 June, in Bulei, 70 km south of Nyala, fighting erupted after local tribesmen stole some 80 cattle from nomads. Three tribesmen were killed.

West Darfur

The security situation in and around the Bamina area is reportedly tense following an alleged SLA attack on JEM positions at Iriba village on 22 Jun. Five JEM soldiers were killed and 11 others wounded. The casualties suffered by SLA have not been confirmed.

On 23 June, UNMIS received a report of fighting between the SLA and nomads at Taado village, north of Keninga.

On 22 June an INGO local staff driver was shot in his arm while he was sleeping in his house at Hai Al Jabal (3 km from the centre of El Geneina) by two unknown persons wearing civilian clothes who came to his house. The staff member was taken to the hospital for treatment. The incident was reported to the police and currently the case is under investigation.

Eastern Sudan

Following an assessment of the Kassala-Port Sudan road, the road segment between Aroma and Dordeib remains NO GO due to insecurity.

The mobilization of GoS Armed Forces is still going on since many security personnel were noticed along the road side at Kassala.

Protection Issues

North Darfur: Reportedly, four or five Omdas were arrested at Abu Shouk camp, after they had talked to participants of the JIM mission. Following intervention by UNMIS-HR, the Omdas were later released.

Political Affairs

In Abuja, the AU special envoy to the Darfur talks, Salim, and AU mediators met the leaders of the GoS, SLM and JEM on 22 June and decided that more consultations were needed on the issue of the DoP. A committee of a limited number of people from the three parties has been tasked to come up with a solution and will report to the AU by 24 June.

A spokesman for the SPLA told the press yesterday that the army of southern Sudanese rebels will deploy 1,500 troops in Khartoum in the next few days forming the nucleus of a joint force with the regular army. This move will be in conformity with the CPA signed in January.

Three journalists of the Juba Post, an independent newspaper in Sudan, were arrested in Khartoum yesterday by the police assisted by security officials and representatives of the National Press Council. The officials refused to explain the case to the reporters, but according to the arrest warrant shown by the police, the three reporters are charged with "defamation". The Juba Post was the only paper with a detailed report on the deadly riots in one of the camps in Khartoum, and also has reported on rape-cases with soldiers involved.

On 22 June, Eritrea rejected Sudanese accusations that it is giving military support to eastern rebels fighting Khartoum. Information Minister Ali Abdu told the reporters, "We only provide moral and political support to them and to say we provide military support to East Sudan rebels is baseless, a total fabrication."

Human Rights

A new case was heard by the national Criminal Court for Darfur. The case involves four defendants, including a minor of 11, charged under Article 26 and Article 168 of the Criminal Act 1991 in relation to an attempted armed robbery of passengers travelling in a vehicle near Gereida, southeast of Nyala town, on 10 Apr. The court heard from two prosecution witnesses before adjourning to 23 July when the defence case will be heard. Prosecutors confirmed to HROs that the third case to be heard by the Court on 25 June is that of the attempted murder of a USAID international staff member and another case involving the rape of two female national INGO staff expected to commence on 28 June.

On 23 June UNMIS Human Rights Officers attended the Central Court in Khartoum South to monitor the progress of the trial involving 25 detained in relation to the Soba Aradi incident of 18 May 2005. This was the third court appearance and the court heard evidence from prosecution witnesses and three defence witnesses. The trial was adjourned part - heard to Saturday 25 June. The detainees are accused of Public Order Offences pursuant to Articles 67, 69 and 77 of The Sudan Criminal Act of 1991.

Civil Affairs

On 21 June, the SRSG met informally with a diverse group of Sudanese civil society organizations including academics, NGOs, media, and civil society activists who expressed concerns about democratic transformation and human rights in Sudan. This event was part of a series of interactions between UNMIS and Sudanese opinion leaders.

Humanitarian Affairs

Food/NFIs

West Darfur: The food distribution in Abu Suruj camp was carried out on 22 June. The camp had not received food since Apr. as a result of continued insecurity. The humanitarian community is very apprehensive about security problems during food distribution in some other camps where there has been fierce resistance to re-registration, and where so far only a partial head-count has been completed; this is the case in Mornei where only 17,000 out of an estimated 80 to 90,000 people have been registered and in Masteri with 3,000 out of 12,000 people registered. The AU and GoS police have been asked for protection during the next food distributions.

Returns

White Nile: OCHA registered 28 HH (72 individuals) on 22 June transitting through Kosti on their way to various locations in the south bringing the total number since 12 Feb. to 4,957 HH (15,404 individuals).

Health

North Darfur: The IRC clinic opened on 22 June in Al-Salaam camp.