SUDAN WATCH: ICC WAR CRIME ALERT: On Tue Feb 16 - Gunmen armed with AK-47 rifles opened fire on peacekeepers close to El-Sherif camp, nr Nyala, S. Darfur, Sudan

Friday, February 19, 2010

ICC WAR CRIME ALERT: On Tue Feb 16 - Gunmen armed with AK-47 rifles opened fire on peacekeepers close to El-Sherif camp, nr Nyala, S. Darfur, Sudan

THIS is a war crime alert to the ICC. Gunmen armed with AK-47 rifles opened fire on a police patrol from the joint U.N./African Union UNAMID peacekeeping force near the South Darfur capital Nyala in western Sudan on Tuesday afternoon (16 Feb 2010), the latest in a series of attacks on the mission.

The attackers waited for the patrol close to El-Sherif refugee camp, 17km (10 miles) south of Nyala, and the peacekeepers were wounded as they returned fire, said UNAMID.

UNAMID initially said two of the police were in a critical condition but on Thursday said that had risen to four.

The spokesman, Noureddine Mezni, said Thursday government troops captured the two suspects outside the south Darfur capital of Nyala a day earlier. Authorities also recovered one of two U.N.-AU vehicles stolen in the attack.

The gunmen escaped in two UNAMID vehicles, one of which was recovered by the Sudanese authorities who made Wednesday's arrests, Mezni said. U.N. officials said it was unclear whether they had set out to shoot peacekeepers or to steal vehicles.

"Any attack on peacekeepers is tantamount to a war crime," said UNAMID mission head Ibrahim Gambari in a statement late on Wednesday after he visited the police in hospital.

AS NOTED here many times before, the targeting of peacekeepers is a war crime under article 82C1 of the Rome Statute.

Here is a copy of some recent news reports, starting with latest.

Two Arrested after UNAMID Shootings in Nyala
From Sudan Radio Service (SRS), Friday, 19 February 2010:
(El Fashir) - Sudanese authorities have arrested two men in connection with the shooting of the seven Pakistani peacekeepers in Darfur on Tuesday.

Unknown gunmen armed with AK-47 rifles opened fire on a UNAMID police patrol near Nyala, in South Darfur. Seven peacekeepers were injured.

UNAMID spokesperson Nouraddine Mezni spoke to SRS on Friday from Darfur.

[Nouraddine Mezni]: “Two suspects were arrested outside Nyala, in an area called Kass. Sudanese military also found one of the two vehicles which were hijacked and we are working with the Sudanese authorities on the investigation and we want a rapid trial for these responsible so that they will serve as an example for the future to those who even think of attacking UNAMID personnel. There is an improvement in the condition of the seven UNAMID police injured during the ambush. Four of them are still in a critical condition. Three are stable but in a serious condition. We are strengthening the security measures everywhere in Darfur. We also have 5 tactical helicopters which will help us in similar cases in the future.”

Twenty-two UNAMID police and soldiers have been killed in carjacking, attacks and ambushes since the force was deployed in 2008.
Sudan condemns attack on Darfur peacekeepers
From Sudan Tribune, Friday 19 February 2010:
February 19, 2010 (KHARTOUM) — Sudanese government has strongly condemned the attack on UNAMID police patrol on Tuesday in South Darfur, wounding seven Pakistani soldiers.

[Photo] An Indonesian police officer talks to children as he patrols Zamzam refugee camp in North Darfur Feb 8, 2010. (Reuters)

The Sudanese government arrested two people suspected of taking part in the attack. Noureddine Mezni, the UNAMID spokesperson said today the Sudanese authorities captured one of the two vehicles carjacked by the gunmen.

In a statement released Thursday the foreign ministry denounced the attack saying it would spear no effort to bring the perpetrators to justice.

The government further pledged to intensify cooperation with the hybrid operation to prevent such attack on the future against the UNAMID and its personnel.

Ibrahim Gambari the new head of UNAMID met today with Mutrif Siddig, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to discuss the attack.

Qmbari stressed the continued consultation and cooperation between the government and UNAMID in order to enable the hybrid operation to carry out its duties in the best conditions. For his part, Mutrif Siddig, stressed the Government’s commitment to support and facilitate the task of UNAMID in Sudan. (ST)
Sudan arrests two assailants of Darfur peacekeepers
From Sudan Tribune, Thursday, 18 February 2010:
February 18, 2009 (KHARTOUM) —Sudanese army arrested today two persons suspected of attacking Pakistani peacekeepers in near Nyala, South Darfur state, two days ago.

Nourredine Mezni, UNAMID official spokesperson told Sudan Tribune by telephone today from El-Fasher that two men suspected to be involved in an attack on Pakistani peacekeepers in Sudan’s Darfur region.

The assailant wounded seven soldiers one of them in critical condition transported to Khartoum.

The head of the Mission, Ibrahim Gambari travelled yesterday to Nyala to visit the wounded police officers at the UNAMID’s hospital. He was accompanied by the Mission Force Commander Lt Gen Patrick Nyambvumba.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon urged the Sudanese government to immediately probe the incident and to ensure that the perpetrators are swiftly identified and brought to justice. (ST)
2 arrested for ambush on UN-AU Darfur peacekeepers
(AP) – Thursday, 18 February 2010:
KHARTOUM, Sudan — A spokesman for the international peacekeeping mission in Darfur says Sudanese authorities have arrested two people in connection with an ambush earlier this week on joint U.N.-African Union forces.

Noureddine Mezni said Thursday government troops captured the two suspects outside the south Darfur capital of Nyala a day earlier. Authorities also recovered one of two U.N.-AU vehicles stolen in the attack.

The arrests come after gunmen attacked a police convoy outside Nyala on Tuesday, wounding seven Pakistani police officers serving with the U.N.-AU force. Four of them are in critical condition. [...]
Sudan arrests two over Darfur peacekeeper shooting
From Reuters, Thursday, 18 February 2010; 2:54 AM
(Reporting by Andrew Heavens; Editing by Louise Ireland):
KHARTOUM (Reuters) - Sudanese authorities arrested two men in connection with the shooting of seven Pakistani peacekeepers in Darfur, officials said on Thursday.

Gunmen armed with AK-47 rifles opened fire on a police patrol from the joint U.N./African Union UNAMID peacekeeping force near the South Darfur capital Nyala on Tuesday afternoon, the latest in a series of attacks on the mission.

UNAMID initially said two of the police were in a critical condition but on Thursday said that had risen to four.

"The Sudanese authorities have arrested two people in connection with the attack," UNAMID spokesman Noureddine Mezni told Reuters. "This will serve as a lesson to anyone who even thinks of attacking us in the future."

A total of 22 UNAMID police and soldiers have been killed in carjackings, attacks and ambushes as law and order has collapsed in the remote western region, where mostly non-Arab rebels took up arms against the government in 2003.

The gunmen escaped in two UNAMID vehicles, one of which was recovered by the Sudanese authorities who made Wednesday's arrests, Mezni said. U.N. officials said it was unclear whether they had set out to shoot peacekeepers or to steal vehicles.

"Any attack on peacekeepers is tantamount to a war crime," said UNAMID mission head Ibrahim Gambari in a statement late on Wednesday after he visited the police in hospital.

The attackers waited for the patrol close to El-Sherif refugee camp, 17km (10 miles) south of Nyala, and the peacekeepers were wounded as they returned fire, said UNAMID.

Seven years of fighting in Darfur has forced an estimated 2.7 million to flee their homes and killed up to 300,000, according to the United Nations. Khartoum, which accuses Western media of exaggerating the conflict, puts the toll at 10,000.

UNAMID says it is still short of vital equipment, including military helicopters, needed in its efforts to keep the peace in a region the size of Spain.

More than two years after UNAMID arrived, the mostly African force only has about 80 percent of its full deployment of 26,000 police and soldiers on the ground.
Seven UNAMID Peacekeepers Wounded Near Nyala
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service, Wednesday, 17 February 2010:
(Nairobi) - Seven UNAU peacekeepers in Darfur were injured and two vehicles were looted by an unknown armed group in southern Darfur.

In an interview with SRS on Wednesday, UNAMID spokesman Noureddine Mezni said that the attackers shot at an armed UNAMID police patrol near Nyala.

[Noureddine Mezni]: “The attack was against UNAMID police while they were returning from a routine patrol around Nyala town in South Darfur. They were ambushed and fired at by an unknown group. Because of this, seven UNAMID personnel were injured. Two of them are in a serious condition and the other five are in a stable state. One of the injured was airlifted to Khartoum.”

The head of UNAMID, Dr. Ibrahim Gambari, is expected to visit the wounded police officers in Nyala town on Wednesday.

About 22 peacekeepers have been killed in separate incidents in Darfur since the mission took over from the African Union force in 2008.
U.N. calls on Sudan to probe attack on peacekeepers
From Reuters, Wednesday, 17 February 2010 2:13pm EST:
UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called Wednesday for the Sudanese government to investigate an attack on peacekeepers in Darfur, a U.N. spokeswoman said.

"The secretary-general calls on the government of Sudan to launch an immediate investigation into this incident and to ensure that the perpetrators are swiftly identified and brought to justice," spokeswoman Marie Okabe told reporters.

Unidentified gunmen opened fire on Pakistani peacekeepers in Sudan's Darfur region Tuesday, wounding seven, two of them seriously, in the latest in a string of attacks on the U.N./African Union force, or UNAMID, officials said.

The ambush of the unarmed police patrol near Nyala, capital of South Darfur, followed reports of a resurgence of fighting in Sudan's violent west that has forced thousands to flee, according to UNAMID.

Twenty-two UNAMID soldiers and police have been killed in ambushes, carjackings and other violent incidents since they took over from a beleaguered African Union force at the beginning of 2008.

The conflict in Darfur flared in 2003, when mostly non-Arab rebels took up arms against Sudan's government, accusing it of neglecting the region. Estimates of the total death count range from 10,000 according to Khartoum, to 300,000 according to the United Nations.
Gunmen injure seven peacekeepers in Sudan's Darfur
From Reuters by Andrew Heavens in Khartoum (Editing by Michael Roddy)
Tuesday, 16 February 2010 3:41pm EST - excerpt:
KHARTOUM (Reuters) - Unidentified gunmen opened fire on Pakistani peacekeepers in Sudan's Darfur region on Tuesday, injuring seven, two of them seriously, in the latest in a string of attacks on the force, officials said.

The ambush came just hours after the joint U.N./African Union UNAMID mission took delivery of its first five military helicopters, ending a wait of more than two years for air support in Sudan's rebellious west.

The attackers shot at an armed UNAMID police patrol near Nyala, capital of South Darfur, escaping with two police vehicles, UNAMID spokesman Noureddine Mezni told Reuters.

"It was an ambush this afternoon. Two of the seven were critically wounded ... This is very serious. We are a peacekeeping mission but we do not have a comprehensive peace to keep," he said.

A total of 22 UNAMID soldiers and police have died in ambushes, carjackings and other violent incidents since they took over from a beleaguered African Union force at the beginning of 2008.

Mezni said one of the critically injured men was evacuated to Khartoum, while the other was too seriously injured to move from hospital in Nyala, where the five others were being treated.

A U.N. official said the injured men came from Pakistan. [...]

More News from Sudan Radio Service:

Labels: , , , , , , , ,

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

<< Home

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