Saturday, November 24, 2012

Statement from Civil society to United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

Ms. Navanethem Pillay

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

Palais Wilson

52 rue des Pâquis

CH-1201 Geneva, Switzerland.



Dear Ms. Pillay,


We are writing to you in view of your visit to Sudan and Darfur, scheduled to take place

during the period 24 to 30 November 2012. Your forthcoming visit to Sudan comes at a

crucial time and where serious violations of human rights and international humanitarian

law are being committed in the regions affected by armed conflicts, notably Darfur, the

Nuba Mountains and the Blue Nile State. Your visit also comes at a time when other parts

of the country, including the capital Khartoum witness serious regression in the area of the

protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms and liberties. We note with regret

that you will not be able to visit the Nuba Mountains and the Blue Nile States due to the

lack of security. This is revealing of the gravity of the situation and the suffering endured

by the civilian populations in those two regions.

Regarding the situation in Darfur, we wish to draw your attention to the work realized by

the Group of Experts on Darfur, which was established by the Human Rights Council in

March 2007 to follow-up implementation of existing resolutions and recommendations on

Darfur. In its final report to the Council (A/HRC/6/19) dated 28 November 2007, the

Experts Group expressed its concern on the seriousness of the violations of human rights

and international humanitarian law in Darfur and prioritized 45 key recommendations to

enhance the situation in the region. It further urged the Government of Sudan to implement

these recommendations without delay. In his presentation before the 13th ordinary session

of the Human Rights Council in March 2010, the Interdependent Expert on the human

rights situation in Sudan (Justice Mohammed Chande Othman) indicated that out of the 45

key recommendations made by the Group of Experts only 4 were fully implemented, 11

partially implemented while 30 were not implemented at all. Once again in his report

before the Council (A/HRC/18/40/Add.1) dated 22 August 2011, Justice Chande

concluded that the Government of Sudan has not taken any significant steps towards

implementation of most of the recommendations since his report to the Council in March



Dear Ms. Pillay,


We note that in compiling its final report, the Group of Experts worked in a transparent

manner and in full cooperation with the Government of Sudan and concerned international

partners. It is also noteworthy that Sudan made initial efforts and committed itself to

implement the recommendations contained therein, which earned it praise from the

Human Rights Council in its Resolution 6/35 of 14 December 2007. These facts should

encourage your delegation in the forthcoming visit to Sudan to remind the Government

about the need for full implementation of the recommendations of the Group of Experts

and also to propose the establishment of a joint mechanism with the government to follow

up and monitor the implementation thereof.

While we attach equal importance and urgency to all the unimplemented

recommendations as outlined by the Independent Expert on the human rights situation in

Sudan in aforementioned reports, we wish to call on you to accord special attention to the

growing phenomenon of rape and sexual violence against women and girls, which are

largely believed to be committed by the security forces and the Janjaweed militiamen in

Darfur. Rape, which can rightly be defined as an irreparable damage of the most sensitive

part of the women's sensitive personality, is a crime abhorrent to the Islamic faith and to all

canons of civilized life. A public denouncement by your delegation and the Government of

Sudan of this crime and a commitment to bring the culprits to justice would be an important

step in this direction.


Respectfully submitted.


1. Abdelbagi Jibril, Exertive Director, Darfur Relief and Documentation Centre,


2. Sabir Abu Saadia, Chairman, Darfur Solidarity Group, Pretoria, South Africa.

3. Ahmed Mohammed Mohammadain, Chairman, Darfur Call, Netherlands

4. Ahmed Guma, Vice Chairman, Darfur Union in the Netherlands

5. Dr. Abdelgabar Adam, President, Darfur Human Rights Organisation of the USA,


6. Abdelmageed Salih Haroun, Chairman, Human Rights Network for Democracy,

New York


Geneva, 21 November 2012


Respectfully submitted.


Geneva, 21 November 2012

Monday, November 19, 2012

UNAMID Evacuates Wounded SAF Soldiers in Darfur: Larger Implications

Eric Reeves
November 18, 2012
On November 13, 2012 the UN/African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) made the decision to provide “medevac” (medical evacuation) to approximately twelve Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) soldiers following heavy fighting with rebel forces in North Darfur. One report puts the number of evacuated wounded soldiers at two dozen.  The injured were taken to the city of el-Fasher, location of the primary SAF military base in Darfur.  Such military clashes between the SAF and rebel forces have been escalating for many months, as has violence against civilians, especially by Khartoum’s proxy forces in Darfur; all this occurs even as UNAMID has resolutely insisted that fighting and violence have diminished, thus justifying a draw-down in forces.  But the grim truth is that UNAMID can’t sustain an adequate security presence for the vast majority of locations in Darfur facing threats of violence by Khartoum-allied militia forces.  We might well wonder, then, why UNAMID would choose to deploy its conspicuously inadequate resources to evacuating Khartoum’s combatants, especially since such medevac forms no part of UNAMID’s mandate—indeed, “evacuating combatants” is neither mentioned nor suggested anywhere in the UN delineation of that mandate (running to over 1,300 words, included below as Appendix A).  Nor is the task of evacuation, by aircraft or ground vehicles, anywhere mentioned in the very lengthy and highly detailed Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), signed by Khartoum and the UN/AU force in February 2008.
To be sure, UNAMID spokesman Chris Cycmanick is narrowly accurate in declaring that this medevac is justified by International Humanitarian Law (the medevac was “completely in line with International Humanitarian Law”), and several of the Geneva Conventions are explicit on the question of the legality of such medical evacuation.  But Cycmanick seriously misrepresents the situation by declaring that medical evacuation of SAF soldiers is in any way part of the core requirement of international humanitarian law, which falls under the Mission’s mandate” (UNAMID press release, November 13, 2012).   International Humanitarian Law certainly governs the UNAMID mandate and the actions of UNAMID; but again, there is not one word about medical evacuation of combatants.  On the contrary, the meaningful language of the mandate is given overly entirely to specifying the obligations of the peacekeeping force to protect civilians and humanitarians—this is the “core” task, and to suggest otherwise is simply disingenuous.  The mandate does also speak vaguely about UNAMID’s assisting in the implementation of the Darfur Peace Agreement (May 2006); but the DPA had long been irrelevant when the language of the mandate was drafted, and it was simply convenient for a UN peacekeeping force to have at least a nominal “peace agreement” to be presiding over (the absurdly negotiated and widely rejected “Doha Document for Peace in Darfur” now serves as an equivalent placeholder).
Moreover, the real question here is not a legal one—it concerns the implications of UNAMID’s consequential decision to use scarce transport resources for a military medevac on behalf of a regime that has an abysmal record of itself defying International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law in any number of situations.  Here it should first be pointed out that UNAMID has in the past been highly selective in its use of transport resources for medevac purposes.  Cycmanick claims that UNAMID has in the past provided such services to rebel wounded and civilians; however, this is a highly questionable assertion, one borne out by pitifully little in the way of reporting from the region, including from UNAMID itself.  It is hardly surprising that one of the main rebel groups vehemently protested the medevac, since they are quite aware that their own wounded would never be accorded such assistance.  Nor would such wounded rebel combatants enjoy the protection of IHL, even in hospitals supposedly enjoying UNAMID protection. Read more >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Why is the Arab League silent about Darfur?

By Magdy el-Baghdady

Arab and Muslim nations condemn Israel but remain mute in the face of ongoing ethnic cleansing in Sudan.

This week, the Arab League met for its annual ministerial summit and issued a condemnation of Israel for bombing a weapons factory in Sudan. Israel has not admitted destroying the Yarmouk facility on 23 October, because it never confirms or denies such military operations. However, it is accepted by the international community that Israel is the perpetrator. It is also widely believed both inside Sudan and beyond that Yarmouk was making weapons both for and on behalf of Iran, and smuggling them to Hamas in Gaza.
Arab and Muslim countries have responded swiftly and with a united voice, expressing outrage at Israel’s actions. Yet, for almost ten years the same organisations have been mute in the face of the ongoing ethnic cleansing and murder of Muslims in Sudan’s remote western region, Darfur.
It surprises friends in Britain when I explain that Sudan’s avowedly Islamist regime has been ruthlessly ethnically cleansing their fellow Muslims. People assume the deaths of an estimated 300,000 Darfuris have religious roots, Muslim against non-Muslim.
This misapprehension is understandable: for decades Sudan’s rulers tried to ‘Arabise’ and impose their version of Islam on the non-Arab and non-Muslim inhabitants of southern Sudan, resulting in more than two million deaths, and leading to South Sudan’s eventual secession last year.
No one disputes that Muslims around the world stand in solidarity with the long-suffering Palestinian people. Equally they are rightly horrified by attacks on European Muslims by far-right racist groups, and by the recent violence against the Muslim minority in Burma. One of the Koran’s central messages is that Muslims must care for each other, showing each other hospitality, charity, protection and solidarity.
Yet, the plight of their fellow Muslims in Darfur has been of little concern for a decade. If any opinion is expressed, it is usually to blame Israel for funding Darfur’s rebels. Khartoum has succeeded in convincing most Arab, Muslim, and even African countries that the bloodshed in Darfur is due to a foreign plot against Khartoum. Depending on their audience, representatives of the regime will frame this conspiracy as colonialist, imperialist or Zionist.
This shameful silence is compounded by commentators and academics in the west who are afraid they will be seen as racist or Zionist for criticising Sudan, a Muslim nation. They therefore explain the violence in Darfur as a consequence of ancient tribal rivalries, and scant economic development, coupled with desertification due to climate change. What they avoid at all costs is suggesting what millions of black Africans know from bitter experience: that in many parts of the Muslim world, black people are regarded as racial inferior.
Racial prejudice is the motive that few dare mention, knowing they will instantly be branded as Zionists or Islamophobic. For many, Darfuris are simply the wrong kind of Muslims because they are black and African. How else can one explain the lack of outrage at the Sudanese regime’s systematic destruction of black African villages in Darfur? The violence in Darfur continues to rage, with the Sudanese armed forces bombing villages while arming its disgruntled local Arab proxies to ethnically cleanse the black African tribes with whom they existed for centuries.
When the Sudanese security forces prevent UNAMID, the international peacekeeping force, from investigating such attacks, those who fund UNAMID, including the British government, remain silent, becoming complicit in the atrocities taking place against Sudanese citizens by its own government.
Back in July 2004 the UN Security Council passed a resolution giving Khartoum 30 days to bring the Arab militia under control, or to face international action. There have been no consequences for the Sudan regime, and all these years later several similar UN resolutions remain unenforced. Why? Because Sudan can always count on the support of its business partners, Russia and China, and the unquestioning backing of Arab and Muslim nations. Read more >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Friday, November 09, 2012


NEW YORK, Nov. 8 - UN Watch, the Geneva-based non-governmental human rights group, urged UN chief Ban Ki-moon, rights commissioner Navi Pillay, U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice and the EU’s Catherine Ashton to condemn today’s U.N. election of “genocidal, misogynistic and tyrannical” Sudan to its 54-member Economic and Social Council, a top U.N. body that regulates human rights groups, oversees U.N. committees on women's rights, and crafts resolutions from Internet freedom to female genital mutilation.

"This is an outrage," said Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch. "On the same day we hear that Sudan is killing babies and burning homes in Darfur -- precisely the kind of dire situation ECOSOC should be urgently addressing -- the U.N. has now made vital human rights protection less likely than ever." Read more >>>>>>>>>>>>>

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

By Mahmoud A. Suleiman

First and foremost while one does not condone any assault on the sovereignty of the Sudanese soil, it is pointless to have weapons factories serving the interests of foreign countries. This makes Sudan an area unnecessarily open for foreign military interventions. It has been more appropriate for the National Congress Party (NCP) regime to work towards containing the crises resulting from its absurd internal wars it wages against the citizens by the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) in Darfur and the rest of the country. What hurts more is that the National Islamic Front (NIF) regime never learns from its fateful mistakes of harbouring terrorist groups, allowing smuggling of weapons to other countries through its territories and establishing military relations with countries classified as rogue states suspected for being in violation of the international law.
Nevertheless, the regime goes on to commit the very crimes in a systematic manner without being deterred by the consequences of the mistakes resulting from intransigence, lack of wisdom in the management of the state that might arise from their baseless sheer arrogance. Such Behaviours are enough to attract and bring the hostility from those affected by the thoughtless and reckless childish acts. As long as things remain in the country at the same pace, style and state of affairs, isn’t it high time for all the Sudanese people to rise up to overthrow this nightmare, throw it into the garbage dustbin of history once and for all?

This article comes against the backdrop of the aerial strike of the Yarmouk weapons factory (Yarmouk Complex for Military Industries) in the south of the Sudanese national capital Khartoum, the seat of the National Congress Party (NCP) regime on Tuesday the 23rd October 2012. As usual, the information Minister warned that his government ‘reserves the right to strike back’ after blaming Israel for the attack. He continued to say: "We are now certain that this flagrant attack was authorized by the same state of Israel. Four radar-evading planes coming from the east bombed the Yarmouk industrial complex around midnight on Tuesday" He went on: "The main purpose is to frustrate our military capabilities and stop any development there, and ultimately weaken our national sovereignty".

The (NIF) and its progeny the despotic (NCP) regime have been giving the same flimsy excuses for almost a quarter of a century for their failings to protect the land of Sudan and maintaining the sovereignty of the state from the violation of invading foreign powers. The failure of the (NIF) and its successor the (NCP) to maintain the Sovereignty of Sudan is attributable to their lack of legitimacy of their coming to power through the ill-fated coup d’état on June 30th 1989. Furthermore, the NCP bigots have forgotten the duty to protect the country and its people. They simply buried the moral compass behind the doctrine of self-Empowerment and fiddling for becoming superrich-wealthy and to better themselves, at the expense of the helpless citizens who live in hardship, at all costs. The people of Sudan are sick and tired of listening them through their National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) spokesman using lying machine spreading rumours, sedition and fraud. Thus, the Sovereignty of Sudan is lost at the hands of the shameless NIF/ NCP Putschists regime forever. Blessed are the old days, which went in vain from the age of Sudan under the racist minority rule who suffer from inferiority complex and claim Arabism and deny their African origin despite their physical features and facial characteristics to adapt for the climate such as black/dark skin, curly hair, thick lips and big noses expose the lie of their claims. Read more >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Militia in Sudan's North Darfur state attacked a village and killed 13 people

KHARTOUM — Militia in Sudan's North Darfur state attacked a village and killed 13 people, a local source said on Saturday, adding to an upsurge of deadly violence in the area.
The attack on Friday targeted Sigili village, about 30 kilometres (19 miles) southeast of the state capital El Fasher, said the source, who cannot be further identified for security reasons.
"Basically it was a tribal clash between local militia and Zaghawa," the source said, adding that five people were also reported missing.
Since July, civilians have been increasingly at risk from inter-communal fighting, harassment by militia groups, and sporadic clashes between rebel and government troops, particularly in North Darfur, UN chief Ban Ki-moon said in a three-monthly report issued on October 16.
Disputes between farmers and pastoralists over land use triggered most of the inter-communal violence, he said.
Tensions escalated when tribal militia aligned to the government became involved, along with anti-regime rebels.
"At the same time, local sources have cited mounting frustration among communities from which the militias are drawn... over unfulfilled commitments by the government that have led to the militia challenging authorities and engaging government security forces," Ban said.
In the Hashaba area northwest of El Fasher, more than 70 civilians died in September from rebel-government fighting and aerial bombardments, the United States said. Read more >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>