Tag Archives: Darfur

Sudan Warns Of Bloodshed If Leader Indicted

Sudan’s government warned there would be violence if their president, Omar Hassan al-Bashir is indicted for war crimes by the International Criminal Court. Bashir has been accused of planning genocide in Darfur which he denies although the evidence is overwhelming that janjaweed forces have killed and raped their way through Darfur. The Sudan government said rebels in Darfur were building up their forces many of which are in Chad in preparation for attacks on Sudan cities and oil fields if Bashir is indicted. A Sudan official argued rebels “will say they are fighting a legitimate cause against a criminal government and a criminal president.”

There is scant need for any rebel group to wait for an indictment against Bashir in order to justify taking up arms against the Bashir regime which doesn’t need any official indictment of war crimes since the world is quite aware of the atrocities it has perpetrated on the people of Darfur.

Children At War In Africa

There are about 6,000 child soldiers fighting in Darfur as the Sudan continues its brutal campaign against inhabitants of that devastated region. Over two million children in the region have been impacted by fighting in one way or another, but many have wound up as soldiers carrying out the murderous orders of adults. Ted Chaiban of UNICEF, emphasized the gravity of the problem by noting every army in the region is drawing upon children to fight their battles. “All of the armed factions and groups in Darfur have used children. The number of children(soldiers)that we estimate exist in Sudan is 8,000 children. Of the 8,000 children we estimated that 6,000 children are carrying weapons.”

He discussed the impact on these children of spending months, if not years in the presence of soldiers who encourage them to kill and mutilate civilians. Given the inability of any outside group to enforce a cease fire the prospect for these children is not bright.

Road Less Traveled Back To Darfur

Mah amat Oumar is a refugee from Darfur who has found refuge in the Central African Republic. In May, 2007, Sudanese planes bombed his village and when people fled they bombed the roads on which they traveled. The janjaweed took all of his possessions and he finally arrived in the CAR where local people greeted them with good will and opportunities to make a living. His family resides in a camp which offers children an education and there is safety from constant attacks.

He was asked about returning to Darfur. “Go back to Darfur? Not even in my dreams.” He can recall his flock and garden before they were taken away. “But, I will not go back there while there is no security.” His comments can be repeated a thousand times and still be true.

Sudan Promises Cease Fire–PR Or Reality?

President Omar al-Bashir, who is under indictment for war crimes, called for a unilateral cease fire in the Sudan. He claimed to be initiating a program to disarm the militia and reduce the use of arms in Darfur. “I hereby announce our immediate unconditional ceasefire between the armed forces and warring factions, provided that an effective monitoring mechanism is put into action and observed by all involved parties.” His janjaweed militia has been responsible for the death of hundreds of thousands as well as the rape and brutalization of untold thousands of women, and suddenly Bashir has become a man of peace.

The Sudan president has become frightened at the prospect of being forced to appear before the International Criminal Court for war crimes. He has established the Sudan People’s Forum which includes members of the opposition and this group has recommended releasing political prisoners and paying compensation to the two million people his militia has driven from their homes. It remains to be seen if he is serious.

Violence Continues In Darfur

The government of the Sudan insists that peace and harmony are its goals in Darfur, but for some reason this belief is not being communicated to their militia in the region. Rebel commanders in Darfur have accused Arab militias of attacking villages in the southern part of the region and killing civilians and burning villages. The accusations come on top of ongoing complaints about violence in northern parts of Darfur which have forced thousands to flee their homes. The UN led peacekeeping operation in Darfur confirmed there was fighting in the region. According to Major Ahmed Salah, “I can confirm fighting but between whom and whom has not been confirmed.” However, he did note that his troops were halted by Arab militias.

A member of the Sudan Liberation Movement said his forces had encountered the Janjaweed who are Arab mercenaries hired by the Sudan government to pillage, rape, and burn in Darfur. A Sudan army spokesman said he could not confirm if his soldiers were operating in the region, but they were securing roads in the area. One can only conclude the Sudan government continues its lies and deceit about the genocide that is happening in Darfur.

Tragedy Of Darfur Goes On And On

The tragedy of Darfur had a beginning, but it appears less and less likely that it will have an ending in the forseeable future. Rebel commanders in Darfur have accused Arab militias which are backed by the Sudan government of attacking villages in southern regions of Darfur. Major Ahmed Salah, of the UN military group stationed in the area, said, “I can confirm fighting but, between whom and whom has not been confirmed.” However, he noted that units of the Sudan army blocked the path of UN forces. There are reports of janjaweed activity in the area and the villagers can expect attacks which will result in death, burning of buildings and violence toward women.

There have been ongoing protests about failure on the part of the Sudan government to halt the violence, but nothing is ever changed. The only certainty in Darfur is that ordinary people will suffer.

Sudan Blames Darfur Situation On UN

The government of the Sudan has unleashed its notorious janjaweed forces to kill, rape and plunder the innocent people of Darfur, but continues to claim it is the innocent victim of UN refusal to cooperate in bringing peace to the region. Sudan’s UN envoy insists the fault for any delays in deploying peacekeepers to the country’s war-ravaged area lies with the United Nations, not with his government. Abdalmahmoud Abdalhaleem told the world, “If there are delays, it’s because of the UN,” and insisted a major source of blame lies with the “confrontational” attitude of the organization which “did not seek the cooperation of the government of Sudan.”

Lost in the rhetoric of lies is the reality Darfur is a vast geographical area whose infrastructure makes difficult deploying military units which must confront janjaweed units who know the area and with Sudan government assistance can move rapidly. Of course, the Sudan government is upset that its president is under indictment for war crimes. The reality is no action to bring peace to Darfur will succeed until there is a large scale air force which can oversee the region.

Sudan Forces Build Up In Darfur

Sudanese troops who are accused of killing more than 30 people in a raid on a Darfur camp have begun to build up their position outside of the camp. Darfurians fear another attack will continue the killing process that invariably is followed by Sudan forces. African Union troops have been alerted by villagers and are attempting to station themselves near the village. A total of 32 camp residents in the camp were killed, including seven children, when Sudan troops entered and began shooting. Naturally, the Sudan government claims their troops were fired on by “bandits” and simply returned the fire. It is not clear whether the seven dead children were part of the “bandit group.”

This is merely one more “unimportant” incident in which several people died because the Sudan government continues its brutal policies. The incident will shortly be forgotten, the dead buried, and Sudan troops will continue killing innocent people. American political leaders might shout, “we are all Georgians,” but, so far, no one has shouted, “we are all Darfurians.”

Darfur War Heated Up By Sudan Government Attacks

Darfur rebels accused the Sudan government of mounting massive new attacks in order to drive them from strongholds in the far north of the region. Three days ago the Sudan army driving in about 270 vehicles staged a ground assault on Atrun which forced members of the
Sudan Liberation Army to retreat. According to the SLA, there is a new and determined effort by the government of the Sudan to crush all rebel groups and assert its authority throughout the Darfur region. Ibrahim Al-Hillo from the SLA, said, “civilians in that area have fled. Government soldiers are shooting randomly in the areas. Civilians have been killed.

It appears the Sudan government has not abandoned its goal to ethnically clear out anyone in Darfur who might constitute a threat to the power of Sudan authorities. Rebel commanders claim Chinese oil workers have arrived in the region to begin oil exploration which is undoubtedly the goal of the Sudan government.

The tragedy of Darfur continues with thousands of innocent people killed, wounded or driven from their homes. Does anyone really care what happens to these people?

Genocide? Not Me Insists Sudan Leader!

Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir insists he is not concerned over charges leveled against him by the International Criminal Court that he is guilty of genocide. However, he recently sent his Tourism Minister, Joseph Dong, to Mozambique to plead for his assistance in dealing with the genocide charges. Dong told Mozambican President Armando Guebuza, “Sudan rejects these accusations. There is no genocide, there are just some political problems. In any case, we haven’t ratified the treaty setting up this court.” Bashir asked for help in having the entire matter turned over to the African Union where the “political problem” could be resolved among friends.

Despite his claims to the contrary, Bashir is concerned about genocide charges and is trying to get the do-nothing Africa Union involved in the case so he can claim an African entity found him not guilty of the charges. One suspects there are African Union leaders like President Mugabe he would be thrilled to rule there is no genocide in Darfur, just a slight modification of living arrangements.