Saturday, October 18, 2008

North Darfur fighting displaces 24,000: UN

EL FASHER, Sudan (AFP) — A surge of fighting in Sudan's isolated north Darfur region has displaced 24,000 people, who face shortages of food and water, a senior UN official said on Friday, urging a rapid humanitarian response.

"The numbers being thrown out now are somewhere in the neighbourhood of about 24,000 people that have not gone back to Birmaza or Disa," said Gregory Alex, the head of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in El Fasher, the capital of North Darfur.

A first wave of people abandoned their homes five or six weeks ago when the fighting began and a second group towards the end of September.

But Alex said humanitarian access to the area has been extremely limited, owing to insecurity and banditry.

"I would guess that their access to basic necessities are extremely limited. Water, I think, has been identified as the most important need, but then you have shelter. The colder season is approaching... these places don't have firewood," he said.

"The problem with the food is that they're distant from any place that they could actually have a distribution... that puts them in, I'd say, a fairly difficult situation." Read more >>>>>>>>>>>>>>

No comments: