I have just briefed the Security Council on the humanitarian situation in Sudan and South Sudan, which continues to deteriorate for hundreds of thousands of people in both countries.
It is more than two years since the Council adopted resolution 2046 in May 2012, expressing deep concern at the humanitarian impact of fighting between the Government of Sudan and the SPLM-North in South Kordofan and Blue Nile.
The purpose of my visit to Sudan was two-fold: first, to look at humanitarian operations in the country; and second – given the sometimes difficult relations between the Government of Sudan and the United Nations on humanitarian issues – to work to build trust and confidence so that we are in a stronger position to help meet the humanitarian needs of people in Sudan.
(New York, 28 June 2012) I am deeply concerned by the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Sudan, especially in South Kordofan and Blue Nile States. Hundreds of thousands of people remain trapped in the conflict zone with little access to food, water, shelter and medical services. Thousands more are crossing into neighbouring countries each day, fleeing the fighting and in search of food and other basic supplies. Since April, the number of refugees from Sudan arriving in South Sudan and Ethiopia has more than doubled, to 200,000.
(New York: 30 August 2011): The crisis in South Kordofan has reached a critical point. The Government of Sudan has denied permission to international aid agencies to replenish stocks and deploy personnel for six weeks. Essential supplies have been completely depleted in many parts of South Kordofan, leaving many people in a life-threatening situation without any prospect of relief. I was disturbed to hear that government authorities last week cancelled an essential humanitarian assessment mission to the region.
(New York: 24 July 2011): I am concerned that humanitarian supplies for the people in SPLMN held areas of Southern Kordofan are dwindling. If we are not allowed access to replenish them, the consequences for civilians affected by the fighting will be grave. Children, elderly people and mothers risk hunger and disease.
Thank you for this opportunity to supplement the briefing from my DPKO colleague.
The background is that the humanitarian situation in Darfur has been steadily deteriorating again this year, in the context of the resumption of armed conflict involving the State armed forces and rebel groups, as well as increased tribal clashes. The level of restrictions imposed on humanitarian operations, and of harassment, threats and violence directed at humanitarian personnel, is once again becoming unacceptable. All this renders the civilians we are trying to help even more vulnerable.
Thank you very much, Mr. President,
And thank you for this opportunity to brief the Security Council on my first mission to Sudan, Chad, and the Central African Republic.
Mr. President, distinguished members of the Security Council,
Thank you for this opportunity to brief the Council on several major challenges the humanitarian community faces in Africa at the moment, all of which have considerable regional implications.
Darfur and Chad
I will start with what continues to be the largest humanitarian operation in the world, the crisis in Darfur, as well as its impact on neighboring Chad.
The humanitarian operation launched in late 2003 has been remarkably effective this year, against overwhelming odds.
I would like to welcome the announcement made yesterday by His Excellency President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir on his Government's decision to declare a comprehensive cease-fire in all the States of southern Sudan effective15 April upon the expiration of the current partial cease-fire.
It is with profound sorrow and regret that I have learned of the deaths yesterday of Sumaln Samson Ohin and Hag Ali Hammad of WFP and of Magboul Magboul of the Sudanese Red Crescent, who were killed as they were carrying out humanitarian relief work in South Kordofan State in Sudan. I am also greatly saddened by the injuries inflicted upon Kamal Debayo, Ahmed Alia Jebouri and Al Hag Kuringi of the Sudanese Red Crescent.