SUDAN WATCH: ABYEI, SUDAN: Messiriya leader says Messiriya and Dinka Ngok will not be proxies in Abyei conflict

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

ABYEI, SUDAN: Messiriya leader says Messiriya and Dinka Ngok will not be proxies in Abyei conflict

The Hague Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) ruling on Abyei borders demarcation case will be issued at 10 am CET on Wednesday, 22 July 2009 in a press conference at the Hague. For further information - and details of webcasts - click here to see Press Release at PCA's website.

In today's news from Sudan, some of it noted here below, Messiriya leader Hamadain Abdallah Eisa Eltahib says Messiriya and Dinka Ngok will not be proxies in Abyei conflict

South Kordofan Governor, Ahmed Haroun, expects that the stakeholders will appreciate the Court ruling.  Haroun held a meeting yesterday with the Chief to the Joint Commission for Fire Cessation, UN-AU Hybrid Force Commander Gen. Baban, for deliberation on how to maintain calmness and stability in the region.

The area's status and boundaries were among the most sensitive issues left undecided in the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement that ended more than two decades of civil war between the Khartoum government and southern rebels.

Tomorrow's ruling will not actually decide whether Abyei goes to north or south Sudan. That decision will be made by the people of Abyei themselves, in a referendum promised in January 2011.

The ruling will decide precisely what area of land is covered by Abyei. The south, banking on a yes vote in the referendum, says Abyei district's northern border stretches far north of Abyei town, taking in oil fields and key grazing ground. North Sudan begs to differ.

Source:  Sudan Radio ServiceSudan Vision Daily, Reuters.  Full story:  

From Sudan Radio Service, Tuesday, 21 July 2009:
Messiriya and Dinka Ngok Will Not Be Proxies in Abyei Conflict
(Nairobi) - As the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague prepares to announce its judgment on the Abyei boundary issue, focus has turned to whether the SPLM and the NCP will respect the ruling of the Tribunal.

Last week, the NCP and the SPLM, together with Messiriya and Dinka Ngok leaders reiterated their commitment to abide by the Tribunal's decision which will be made public on Wednesday, July 22.

Hamadain Abdallah Eisa Eltahib is a Messiriya leader.  
Sudan Radio Service asked him whether Khartoum and Juba are using Abyei as a pretext for going back to war.

[Hamadain Abdallah Eisa Eltahib]: “No. From now on, the Messiriya and the Dinka Ngok have decided that they are not going to be used by the politicians from North or from the south. The government in Khartoum claims that the Arabs are on their side but the Messiriya area doesn’t belong to the north. So we claim that when it comes to a referendum, we have the right to choose either to go to the north or the south. We respect the CPA, we are waiting for the elections, for democracy and also we are waiting for the choice of the people of South Kordofan; that includes the Messiriya, the Nuba, and the other minority tribes. The Dinka Ngok and Messiriya have been living together for 200 years and so we have come together and we are going to avoid any clashes on the ground, we are aware that peace and reconciliation will be the best for the people. But oil is the issue - because if there was no oil, Abyei would not be a problem.

That was Hamadain Abdallah Eisa Eltahib, a Messiriya leader, speaking to Sudan Radio Service on Monday in Nairobi.
- - -

From Sudan Vision Daily by Al Sammani/Zuleikha, Tuesday, July 21, 2009:
SAF, SPLA, UNMIS to Implement NCP-SPLM Plan for Effecting PCA Verdict
(Khartoum) - Sudan Armed Force (SAF), Sudan Peoples' Liberation Army (SPLA) and UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) have agreed to co-implement the joint plan set by the National Congress Party (NCP) and the Sudan Peoples' Liberation Movement (SPLM) for effecting, on the ground, The Hague Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) ruling on Abyei borders demarcation case.

The Joint Commission for Fire Cessation, that includes representatives of NCP, SPLM, SAF, SPLA and UNMIS, resolved to issue a joint memo on the situation in Abyei with emphasis on the criticality of fire cessation respect, by all stakeholders, following the PCA ruling announcement set for tomorrow.

The Commission's meeting, participated in by the UNSG Special Representative in Sudan, Ashraf Qazi, decided to conduct a joint visit to Abyei area after the ruling announcement to convey to local peoples the NCP-SPLM commitment to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) implementation.

The meeting also called on SAF, SPLA and the Joint Integrated Units (JIU) to effect the Court verdict on the ground, monitor security and order, besides handling of violations if any.

The meeting was co-chaired by the NCP representative, State Minister to Presidency, Idris Mohammed Abdelgadir, SPLM representative, Professor George Bureng and Ashraf Qazi.

Abyei Commissioner, Ahmed Omer, reported that arrangements have been undertaken make to the peoples of the region prepared for accepting the PCA ruling, urging the Messariyi and Dinka Ngok tribes to resort to the sound of reason and peaceful coexistence.

South Kordofan Governor, Ahmed Haroun, expects that the stakeholders will appreciate the Court ruling when it will be issued tomorrow morning in a press conference at the Hague.

Haroun held a meeting yesterday with the Chief to the Joint Commission for Fire Cessation, UN-AU Hybrid Force Commander Gen. Baban, for deliberation on how to maintain calmness and stability in the region.
- - -

From Reuters by Andrew Heavens in Sudan, Tuesday, 21 July 2009:
Tension mounts ahead of ruling in Sudan's Abyei

* Hague court to rule on Abyei border

* Citizens brace for potentially divisive ruling
(ABYEI, Sudan) - Nyok Galwak ran for his life when the shells and bullets from Sudan's northern and southern armies started raining down on his tyre-repair stall in the contested oil town of Abyei in May last year.

Now, more than a year later, he is back at his shack at the centre of the battle-scarred settlement claimed by both Sudan's Muslim north and its mostly Christian south, bracing himself for more trouble.

Abyei's citizens are preparing for the announcement of a divisive ruling on the boundaries of their district, expected on Wednesday from a tribunal at the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague.

A year ago, the competing claims over the area exploded in violence. On Wednesday, both Khartoum and the former southern rebels, the Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), have agreed to accept the decision peacefully.

But that assurance has done little to ease the tension. "The town seems calm, but the fear is under the surface," said one U.N. worker who asked not to be named.

There is much more at stake than local politics and the demarcation of local boundaries.

Abyei lies at the heart of an oil-producing, pastoral district at the heart of Africa's largest country, straddling its undefined north-south border.

The area's status and boundaries were among the most sensitive issues left undecided in the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement that ended more than two decades of civil war between the Khartoum government and southern rebels.

Many see the north-south rivalry that still burns over Abyei as a microcosm of the dangerous divisions that remain at the heart of the country four years after the historic accord, divisions that could still threaten the peace deal, the country's oil industry and the region as a whole.

Wednesday's ruling will not actually decide whether Abyei goes to north or south Sudan. That decision will be made by the people of Abyei themselves, in a referendum promised in January 2011.

LAND RULING

The ruling will decide precisely what area of land is covered by Abyei. The south, banking on a yes vote in the referendum, says Abyei district's northern border stretches far north of Abyei town, taking in oil fields and key grazing ground. North Sudan begs to differ.

"We don't know what is going to happen after the decision. But this time I am going to stay here," said Galwak, a member of Abyei's Dinka Ngok ethnic group, part of south Sudan's Dinka group. "Abyei is ours. If there is going to be any trouble, it will be started by the Misseriya," he said, referring to the northern Arab nomads who have also driven their cattle through the region for many years.

Galwak's bravado hasn't stopped him taking precautions. Like many others, he has only partly moved back to Abyei - his family still lives outside the town.

The cautious approach is apparent everywhere. Abyei is still a ghost of its former self -- only around 3,000 are now thought to live in the town and surrounding villages out of the 50,000 people who lived there before the May fighting.

Few have felt confident enough about the future to invest in the area. Some of the larger shell holes have been patched up, some roofs repaired, landmines cleared. But children still walk past the blackened circles of burnt-out huts while whole town blocks are empty and covered in rubbish.

"Nothing has changed in Abyei from last year. Nobody is ready to put up a hut let alone a proper building," Arop Mayok, head of Abyei's joint north-south administration.

Few people expect an immediate explosion of fighting on Wednesday. The current rainy season is never the best time for troop movements. At the very least, it will take a while for the new of the ruling to spread -- most of the surrounding communities have little to no access to media.

Prominent northern and southern leaders have also promised to be on the ground on Wednesday to quell any trouble.

But still the fears of looming trouble persist.

Over the weekend, the U.N. said southern soldiers had been seen south of Abyei, breaching an agreement to pull out of the area after May 2008.

"There is no great sense of imminent danger," said the U.N.'s Abyei chief Mark Rutgers. "But people remember May. They are apprehensive."

(Editing by Giles Elgood)
- - -

Abyei in Southern Sudan

Image source: Voice of America, 20 July 2009 - Abyei Boundary Ruling Expected Wednesday

Abyei from above

Abyei, Sudan from above c. 2006

Photo: Abyei from above, circa 2006. See the original (check out large size) photo and more from Abyei at the blog of Karl Maier and Sarah Longford - Making Rain Fall.

Further reading

The Abyei ruling: what it’s about & why it matters - Bec Hamilton.com 20 July 2009.

SUDAN: Abyei timeline - a timeline for the Abyei boundary dispute, courtesy of IRIN, 21 July 2009.

Governor calls on Dinka Ngok and Misseriya to resume ancestral ties - Sudan Tribune, 22 July 2009. Note this copy of a comment at the article:
A bit of Clarification on Abyei Ruling

22 July 2009 10:28, by Deng Akec Deng Anguii
The ruling the Permanent Court of Arbitration(PCA) is going to make later today is not whether Abyei is part of the South or North. But whether ABC (Abyei Boundary Commission) has exceeded its mandate of defining the area of 9 (nine) Ngok Dinka chiefdoms which was transferred from South to north in 1905. If the ABC has exceeded its mandate, then the court has to define Abyei boundaries based on the evidence submitted by the parties(NCP & SPLM). If the court finds that the ABC experts did not exceed their mandate, then it will order immediate and full implementation of ABC Reports.

This arbitration ruling is misunderstood by some people including journalists to be a ruling on where Abyei longs, whether to the South or north. Whether Abyei should be part of South or north rests with people of Abyei but that is until about January 2011 when the people of Abyei will excercise their rights of Referandum on where Abyei should be as stipulated in Abyei Protocols. So, this is just a definition of Abyei boundaries and there is more to do to get Abyei transferred back to the South.

The important of this ruling is that either way, that is whether it is in favour of ABC Reports or not, it would be better than the current border which regimes in north defined in their favour. The ruling will force NCP to implement either ABC Reports or the border the court will define. If NCP refuse to implement Arbitration Court ruling as they did with ABC Reports, then the action the people of Abyei and Southern Sudan take is justified.

Anyways, there is more information about Abyei Arbitration Tribunal including the broadcast of the ruling at the following link: http://www.pca-cpa.org/showpage.asp...
Best regards, Deng Akec Deng Anguii/
Click on Abyei label here below for further details and latest reports on Abyei.

Labels: ,

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

<< Home

Click HERE to scroll up ......Click HERE to scroll down