SUDAN WATCH: When did Sudanese VP Ali Taha say Sudan would allow UN peacekeepers in Darfur?

Saturday, July 22, 2006

When did Sudanese VP Ali Taha say Sudan would allow UN peacekeepers in Darfur?

Khartoum protests

Photo: Aug 4 2004 (AFP) CBS News Sudan Protests U.N. Ultimatum: More than 100,000 people staged a state-orgainsed protest Wednesday against a UN Security Council resolution giving Sudan 30 days to stop militia violence in Darfur or fact economic and diplomatic penalties. -- "Targeting Sudan means you will fall into a third swamp, after Afghanistan and Iraq," said a senior member of the ruling party, Mohammed Ali Abdullah, in comments directed at President Bush and British leader Tony Blair.

Khartoum demo

Photo: Mar 8 2006 (Reuters) Thousands of Sudanese protest against UN force

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Photo: Jun 25 2006 (AFP/Isam al-Hag) Sudanese from student and youth organisations rally in front of the parliament building in Khartoum, to protest against UN plans to deploy peacekeepers in Darfur. See report Jun 26 2006 Thousands of protestors gathered in Khartoum to protest against UN and its proposed peacekeepers: Up to 5,000 protesters, mainly from the youth and student organisations of the ruling National Congress, gathered in front of parliament in Khartoum Sunday to protest against the proposed deployment. "Down, Down United Nations", "Down, Down, USA", "We will not be ruled by the CIA", they chanted, as some of them torched a life-size dummy with the words UN and USA inscribed on it.

When did VP Ali Taha say Sudan would allow UN peacekeepers in Darfur?

The photos here above are just a few of many showing demos in Khartoum against the UN over the past two years. I am still trying to get to the root of where Western activists got the information they keep spreading that Khartoum agreed to UN peacekeeepers for Darfur. If their information is based on something that I have missed, I am interested in finding it, to see for myself how it could be construed as a commitment by Khartoum. Western activists keep claiming that Khartoum is backtracking, reneging, going back on a "commitment" that, so far from what I can gather, was never made.

For example, note this excerpt from Eric Reeves' latest opinon piece entitled Security in Darfur: Donors' Conference in Brussels Fails to Take Action
"'(Second Vice President) Ali Osman Mohamed Taha was absolutely categorical that once a peace deal was signed [in Abuja] ... Sudan would allow UN peace keepers in Darfur. There was no ambiguity at all,' said [Chief Editor] Patrick Smith of the Africa Confidential political newsletter in London." (Reuters [dateline: Khartoum], July 11, 2006).

Of course once Khartoum secured in Abuja the deal it found most advantageous, it promptly reneged on Taha's commitment. "
A commitment eh? What commitment? When and where did Second VP Ali Osman Taha say Sudan would allow UN peacekeepers in Darfur? I challenge Eric Reeves and Patrick Smith to back up such claims or admit they've made it up to suit their opinion pieces.

So far, all I can find is this excerpt from a Reuters AlertNet piece by Mohammed Abbas 11 July 2006:
Analysis-Little sign of peace or agreement after Darfur deal:

"(Second Vice President) Ali Osman Mohamed Taha was absolutely categorical that once a peace deal was signed ... Sudan would allow UN peace keepers in Darfur. There was no ambiguity at all," said Patrick Smith of the Africa Confidential political newsletter in London.
Further reading

Jun 22 2006 Human Rights Watch incorrectly says Khartoum is backtracking - I challenge Human Rights Watch to point out when and where the Sudanese Government agreed to accept UN troops in Darfur and monitor a peace agreement.

Jun 27 2006 Human Rights Watch wants more troops in Darfur - - When did the Sudanese government say it would support the transition to a UN force? How can the Sudanese government renege on a commitment it never made?

Jul 2 2006 Washington Post continues to publish propaganda on Darfur - On reading the editorial closely, I saw no fact based news but a piece of activism calling for UN troops in Darfur and the isolation of Khartoum regime. Clearly it states, quote: "This year, Sudan's government declared that it would allow United Nations peacekeepers into the western region of Darfur."

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June 25, 2006 photo: A Sudanese youth holds a banner reading in Arabic," America stop", during a rally in front of the parliament building in Khartoum, to protest against UN plans to deploy peacekeepers in the troubled region of Darfur. The UN's bid to gain backing for its Darfur peacekeeping plan suffered a fresh blow when Khartoum accused the world body of providing cover for a rebel leader who rejects a recent peace deal. (AFP/Isam al-Hag)

Demos in Sheiriya Gereida via Jan Pronk Weblog

Mar 8 2006 Sudanese students offers reward for head of UN envoy

3 photos: Demonstration in Nyala against a potential AMIS-UN transition. (Paula Souverijn-Eisenberg) Source: March 13, 2006 entry at Jan Pronk's weblog." See Jan Pronk's weblog accuses Sudanese government of a political campaign against the United Nations

Sheiriya Gereida

Sheiriya Gereida

Sheiriya Gereida

May 7 2006 Protests greet UN's Egeland in Darfur, before Gereida visit: As Jan Egeland stepped off his plane, several dozen protesters chanted and waved banners saying "No to international interference," an apparent reference to a proposal to send U.N. peacekeepers to Darfur to calm the violence that has killed 180,000 people and displaced 2 million others. Saturday, a spokesman for the Sudanese government suggested that Sudan would welcome U.N. peacekeepers, but a foreign ministry spokesman told Reuters on Sunday that the government had not yet decided whether to allow the so-called "blue helmets" into the region.

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