Saturday, April 21, 2012

Darfur: UN-African Union mission chief concerned over developments in south

Concern over developments in Darfur
Ibrahim Gambari, Joint Special Representative for the UN-AU Mission in Darfur. Photo: UNAMID/A. G. Farran

UN - 20 April 2012 – The head of the joint United Nations-African Union peacekeeping mission in the western Sudanese region of Darfur today expressed serious concern over developments in the region�s south, following attacks by armed movements on three towns earlier this week.

�In the climate of ongoing tensions between Sudan and South Sudan, I am deeply concerned that armed movements are seeking to destabilize Darfur. Such actions could undermine the precious peace which has been advancing in Darfur since the signing of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur,� the Joint Special Representative for the UN-AU Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) and Joint Chief Mediator ad interim, Ibrahim Gambari, said in a press release.

�I reiterate my call on the armed movements to discard the logic of war and to join the peace process for the sake of the long-suffering of the people of Darfur,� he said.

According to UNAMID, on 17 April, an armed group waged an attack on the community of Saysaban, in southwest Darfur, destroying a telecommunications tower and seizing fuel from the local market.

Later that day, another armed group seized the town of Um Dafok, on the border with the Central African Republic. The groups claiming responsibility have identified themselves with the Sudan Liberation Army/Minni Minnawi and the Justice and Equality Movement.

In a third development, an unidentified armed group attacked the area of Amudal Al-Agdor, near Buram, some 50 kilometres north of the border with South Sudan.

Mr. Gambari said UNAMID is closely monitoring the situation and taking measures to protect the civilian population in the region.

�All parties must refrain from violence,� the Joint Special Representative added. �There is no military solution to this conflict.�

The Doha Document for Peace in Darfur, a Qatari-mediated pact aimed at spurring an eventual comprehensive accord to end the conflict, was agreed on by the Government of Sudan and the Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) on in 2011.