Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Sudan: State Dept expresses concern over civilian casualties during offensive operations in Jebel Marra

Source: United States Department of State -
Philip J. Crowley
Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Public Affairs

The United States is extremely concerned about reports that Government of Sudan forces are conducting offensive operations against Sudan Liberation Army/Abdel Wahid (SLA/AW) positions in the Jebel Marra area of Darfur that have reportedly caused significant civilian casualties, displacement, and the evacuation of humanitarian organizations. The United States urges the Government of Sudan and SLA/AW to refrain from further violence and to allow the Joint African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur access to Jebel Marra to assess the humanitarian situation and restore stability.

The February 20 ceasefire signed by the Government of Sudan and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) offers an important opportunity to significantly reduce violence in Darfur, but it must be broadened to include other groups. We see any violence on the ground as undermining the spirit of the peace process. The United States reiterates its call on all parties to commit to the AU/UN-mediated Doha peace process to bring a comprehensive and enduring resolution to the conflict in Darfur.

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