AU Panel visited Abu Shouk camp N. Darfur
EL FASHER (DARFUR), Sudan, April 3, 2009 - via APO:
African Union high level panel on Darfur arrives in North Darfur
The African Union High Level Panel on Darfur (AUPD) arrived in El Fasher, North Darfur, today to meet with the leadership of the United Nations-African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) and senior Government officials in the region.
The Panel – led by former South African President Thabo Mbeki and also comprising former Burundian President Pierre Buyoya and former Nigerian President Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar – was received by UNAMID Joint Special Representative, Mr. Rodolphe Adada, and the Wali (Governor) of North Darfur, Mr. Othman Kibir, upon arrival at El Fasher airport.
AUPD members later held a meeting with the Wali and other senior state Government officials. They were briefed on the security and humanitarian situation in North Darfur as well as efforts undertaken by both the state and national Government in resolving the conflict in Darfur.
Mr. Kibir indicated that the only way to solve the situation in Darfur was through negotiation and to include all Darfurians in the process. The panelists were also briefed on humanitarian issues and the latest developments regarded internally displaced persons (IDPs).
Mr. Mbeki outlined that the purpose of the visit is to interact with the Sudanese people with a view to determining what more can be done to achieve peace, justice and reconciliation.
The AUPD visited Abu Shouk camp for IDPs, where the panelists held a brief meeting with the leaders of the camp, and were briefed on the security and humanitarian situation in the camp.
The AU panel also met with the Civil Society Organizations in North Darfur and discussed ways of resolving the Darfur conflict and last month’s expulsion of the Non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
Photo: A young Sudanese child is helped with a drink of clean water at the Abu Shouk refugee camp near El Fasher, in Darfur, Sudan, in August 2004. (AFP/Jim Watson/Sudan Watch archives)