SUDAN WATCH: March 2010

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Security situation in Darfur 31 March 2010 - UNAMID JSR meets with SLM leader Abdul Wahid Al-Nur in Paris, France

Quotes of the Day
“We have just arrived from Khartoum. We have been involved in a lot of activities pertaining to the election itself. I have just come from briefing the president of GoSS. I want to assure you that the elections are on. There has been debate lately, sometimes even misquoting the SPLM. We are committed to the elections as scheduled by the NEC. We want to assure you that the process, for which this PPC process will be very useful, is on. Let me repeat, the elections are on.” - Vice President of the Government of Southern Sudan, Riek Machar, Juba, southern Sudan, 31 March 2010 (Source: Alex de Waal's blog, Making Sense of Sudan - Political Parties Council in Juba)

“SPLM is our strategic ally; SLM is not competing with the SPLM. The SPLM is the leading force for change in Sudan, and we need to remain allies” - SLM Chairman Abdul Wahid Al-Nur, Washington, DC, 22 July 2008 (Source: GOSS Mission-USA, copy here below).
THIS blog, Sudan Watch, refers to Abdul Wahid Mohamed Al-Nur as leader of SLM, not SLA. Click on SLM-Nur label here below to view previous reports. Sometime in the future, I hope to label all blogposts stored in the archives of Sudan Watch, Uganda Watch and Congo Watch.

Once all of the posts have been labelled, readers will be able to see, at a glance, how Cdr. Al-Nur repeats the same nonsense (see report here below) over and over, like a parrot. Who is priming and paying him and what is France and Russia's role in the battle for Darfur, I wonder.

Note that Cdr. Al-Nur directs the Darfur war from Paris and wants to become president of Sudan without facing election. Who knows if it is true that he has many supporters in Darfur? Maybe he is a coward and doesn't want to know.

Also, copied here below, for the record, is a press release from the official website of GOSS Mission-USA regarding Luka Biong Deng's meeting with Cdr. Al-Nur in Washington, D.C. on 22 July 2008, plus some related reports for future reference.

UNAMID Daily Media Brief / 2010-03-30
EL FASHER (DARFUR), Sudan, March 31, 2010/APO)
Security situation in Darfur
The security situation in Darfur remains relatively calm.

UNAMID military forces conducted 102 patrols including routine, short range, long range, night, and Humanitarian escort patrols, covering 101 villages and Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps during the reporting period.

UNAMID police advisors also conducted 166 patrols in villages and IDP camps.

UNAMID JSR meets with SLA-AW leader
On 28 March, UNAMID Joint Special Representative (JSR) Ibrahim Gambari met in Paris with Abdul Wahid Mohammed Al-Nour, leader of the Sudan Liberation Army-Abdul Wahid (SLA-AW) faction, as a follow up to their earlier meeting on 21 March. The SLA-AW leader reiterated his commitment to peace if certain conditions on the ground were met and indicated that he would be willing to participate in the peace process anywhere, ‘even in Khartoum,’ if those conditions are met, particularly regarding the security of the people of Darfur.

The SLA leader promised not to obstruct UNAMID’s activities in Darfur and to facilitate its access and those of humanitarian organizations to areas in which his movement is present. JSR Gambari expressed hope that SLM-AW will join the peace process in the not-too-distant future. Both men agreed to remain in close contact.
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H.E. Dr. Luka Biong Deng Meets with Cdr. Abdul Wahid Al-Nur
Tuesday, 22 July 2008
Press Release
Source: GOSS Mission-USA
Date: 22 July 2008
Location: Washington, DC
The Minister of Presidential Affairs of the Government of Southern Sudan and Member of the SPLM National Liberation Council, H.E. Dr. Luka Biong Deng met with the Chairman of Sudan’s Liberation Movement, Cdr. Abdul Wahid Mohamed Al-Nur

Luka Biong Deng
Photo: Dr. Luka Biong Deng

Abdul Wahid Al-Nur

Photo: Abdul Wahid Al-Nur

The Minister of Presidential Affairs of the Government of Southern Sudan and Member of the SPLM National Liberation Council, H.E. Dr. Luka Biong Deng and Mr. Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth, the Head of the Government of Southern Sudan Mission to the United States, Member of the SPLM National Liberation Council, and the SPLM Representative to the United States met with the Chairman of Sudan’s Liberation Movement, Cdr. Abdul Wahid Mohamed Al-Nur on Saturday July 19, 2008 in the Capital of the United States. The Minister was wrapping up a week long official trip to the United States.

The two discussed a wide range of issues including: the importance of the resumption of cooperation between the SPLM and the SLM, leveraging Abdul Wahid’s popular support in Darfur towards finding a satisfactory and sustainable political resolution to the Darfur Conflict, The SPLM Roadmap for Darfur, and the challenges and opportunities of the current political crisis in the country that resulted from ICC’s approval of an Arrest Warrant for the President of the Republic of Sudan, Omer El Bashir.

According to H.E. Dr. Luka Biong Deng, the rift that now exists between the Sudan’s Liberation Movement (SLM) and The Sudan’s People Liberation Movement (SPLM) after the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) has been created by overt political propaganda that has depicted the SLM as an extremist force and the SPLM as a moderate one.

“SPLM is our strategic Ally; SLM is not competing with the SPLM. The SPLM is the leading force for change in Sudan, and we need to remain allies”, said Chairman Abdul Whaid Al-Nur. He stressed the need for discussions between the two movements around the SPLM Roadmap for Darfur in order to settle points of difference to begin a process of cooperation and coordination between two movements. Cdr. Al-Nur also emphasized the importance of the establishment of direct channels of communication between the respective Leadership of the SLM and SPLM.

In the spirit of comradeship and solidarity that was present throughout their hour long meeting, H.E. Dr. Luka Biong and Cdr. Abdul Wahid Al-Nur parted with the resolve to act expeditiously on issues of agreement and the commitment to discuss the SPLM Roadmap for the resolution of the Darfur Crisis. Furthermore, Cdr. Abdul Wahid committed to a meeting with the Chairman of the SPLM, General Salva Kiir Mayardit.
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Related reports

Abdel Wahid Mohammed Nur

Photo: A picture taken on August 13, 2007 shows the leader of Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) Abdel Wahid Mohammed Nur addressing journalists after a meeting with Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade at Wade’s residence in Paris (AFP/Sudan Watch archives)

SLM Abdel Wahid al-Nur declares his aim is to become President of Sudan
Sudan Watch - Jul 25, 2006
Here is the answer to my question about Minnawi and Nur: if Minni Minnawi takes up the top position in Darfur, what becomes of his rival Abdel Wahid al-Nur? UN SGSR Jan Pronk, in his latest blog entry, reveals that this week, Abdel Wahid al-Nur declared that his aim is to become President of Sudan. Note also, Mr Pronk confirms JEM's aim is not peace but power in Khartoum ...

Darfur commanders impeach President of SLM/A Abdel Wahid Mohamed Ahmed Nur
Sudan Tribune - Aug 01, 2006
July 31, 2006 (PARIS) - Military commanders of Sudan Liberation Movement known as Abdelwahid al-Nur Faction dismissed Abdelwahid al-Nur from the leadership of the movement, a press release said ...

Sudan’s SPLM unveils roadmap to counter ICC move
Sudan Tribune - ‎Aug 13, 2008
August 13, 2008 (KHARTOUM) - A high ranking Sudan People’s Liberation Movement official unveiled the content of a roadmap presented by his party to the National Congress Party‎ ...

US official says Darfur's Nur forfeited peace opportunity
Sudan Tribune - ‎Mar 13, 2010‎
March 13, 2010 (DOHA) - The leader of Sudan Liberation Movement Abdel-Wahid Mohamed Nur has wasted a "historical" opportunity to join the peace talks and ...

Back to bloody square-one in Darfur
Daily Star - Lebanon - Julie Flint - ‎Mar 15, 2010‎
I learned about it when Abdul Wahid Mohammad al-Nur, the chairman of the rebel Sudan Liberation Army (SLA), called me by satellite telephone to invite me to ...

SLM chief Abdulwahid al-Nur explains why he won't join Darfur Sudan peace talks
SRS - Sudan Radio Service - Mar 16, 2010
In an interview with SRS from Paris on Monday, Abdulwahid al-Nur said peace is not about the distribution of political influence.
Over the weekend, the US Special Envoy to Sudan, Scott Gration, told the press in Doha that al-Nur has wasted a "historic" opportunity to join the peace talks. In response, al-Nur described Gration as a colonizer who ignores the conflict in Darfur ...

UN to probe attack on peacekeepers in South Darfur
Sudan Tribune - ‎Mar 26, 2010‎
The area was the theatre of heavy fighting between the rebel Sudan Liberation Movement led by Abdel Wahid Al-Nur (SLM/AW), and the regular army and militias ...

Darfur rebels say shot down Sudan helicopters
Reuters - Andrew Heavens, Khaled Abdelaziz - ‎Mar 28, 2010‎
The insurgents' Paris-based leader Abdel Wahed Mohamed al-Nur is refusing to negotiate with Khartoum, and dismissed a ceasefire signed last month between ...

Two key Darfur rebel groups warn against holding April vote
Sudan Tribune - ‎Mar 31, 2010‎ - extract:
March 30, 2010 (PARIS) - The Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) led by Abdel-Wahid Al-Nur and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) today joined the calls for delaying the vote. "Any elections held now under these circumstances will deem them meaningless and will not achieve the desired outcome of stabilizing country and transforming it to a democratic one," Al-Nur told Sudan Tribune today. [...]

JEM, which is currently engaged in peace talks with Khartoum, echoed Al-Nur’s call saying that the "bare minimum standards" for holding them should exist stressing that the bulk of Darfuri population has not been registered in the census or the voter registration process.

"Excluding [Darfuris] from participation in shaping the future of their country through the ballot box at this critical juncture of the history of the country would weaken their sense of belonging, and works to amplify the voice of the advocates of self-determination for Darfur" according to a statement signed by JEM spokesperson Ahmed Hussein Adam.

JEM slammed the "arrogance" of the NCP in dealing with other political powers saying it does not help building the "national consensus".

"Holding elections in April places obstacles before the peace talks process, and in particular the power sharing portion. Prioritizing the conducting of elections over achieving peace offers conclusive evidence that the NCP does give much care to peace, and unable to depart from the selfish interests of party loyalty to the supreme national interest".

JEM leader Khalil Ibrahim during meeting with Sudanese presidential adviser Ghazi Salah Al-Deen in Ndjamena refused to finalize a ceasefire agreement unless he reaches an agreement on the power sharing with the government. Khartoum rejects to give his group a vice-presidency and to postpone elections ...

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Fifty EU Election Observers from UK deploy to S. Sudan - Darfur issue could still be resolved after the elections

Sudanese people have a wonderful way with words. A year or so ago, Sudan's president Al-Bashir warned warmongers to go lick their elbows (try licking your elbow to see what he means). Last week, Mr Bashir said he will cut off the fingers of international observers if they interfere.
The Sudanese president gave a stern warning to foreign election monitors threatening to expel them if they call for a delay of the polls scheduled for April 11th.

The warning appears directed at the US based Carter Center which last week called for a slight delay in elections because of logistical and procedural issues.

The NEC deputy chairman Ahmed Abdullah insisted the elections would take place on April 11, as planned.

But Bashir had tougher words to the US based elections watchdog. "We brought these organizations from outside to monitor the elections, but if they ask for them to be delayed, we will throw them out... any foreigner or organization that demand the delay of elections will be expelled sooner rather than later, " he said.

"We wanted them to see the free and fair elections, but if they interfere in our affairs, we will cut their fingers off, put them under our shoes, and throw them out," he added.
Heh. Best of British luck to Paul Moorcraft and all other election observers. Thinking of you, wishing you well. Click on labels at the end of this post to read more about Paul Moorcraft and European Union observers for Sudan's elections.

UK Elections Observers Deploy To Help Sudan Move Towards Democracy
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service, Tuesday, 29 March 2010:
29 March 2010 - (Khartoum) – the UK-based Centre for Foreign Policy Analysis, says it will deploy fifty election observers in south Sudan as part of the international community’s mission to observe Sudan’s general elections scheduled for April this year.

Speaking to the press in Khartoum on Saturday, the Director of the CFPA, Prof. Paul Moorcraft, emphasized that the observers are independent.

[Paul Moorcraft]: “We have fifty observers in the group. They come from a wide range of professions in the United Kingdom. We are independent; we are not aligned to government, although some of the people in the team have a military background or government background or academic background, they are here as neutral, absolutely neutral observers, independent, not tied to any government or creed or philosophy. Fifty people, many of them are lawyers, constitutional lawyers, some of them are eminent professors and some of them have been most of the time in observation recently. So we put together a very experienced varied team who speak Arabic. We tried to put together a team that will understand this country.”

Prof. Moorcraft said the CFPA wanted to help the Sudan move towards real democracy.

[Paul Moorcraft]: “In the final report which we will make, we will put our observations down and if there are some things that we think in our opinion could perhaps in terms of procedures be done better, we would make some suggestions as a way of perhaps trying to help. We are here simply to observe and this is a major operation. So we are here to look at the transition from your previous systems to a multi-party democracy. We are here to help but not to interfere. We are here to see what went right and perhaps one or two things that went wrong and we will record it as honestly and faithfully as we can. That is what we are here to do. We are here to help Sudan.”

Moorcraft described the recent statement by President Omar al-Bashir that he would expel foreign observers if they continue to call for the postponement of the elections as a “threat”.

According to him, the CFPA was invited by the National Elections Commission to assist with the observation of Sudan’s general elections in April.
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Election Observer Presses for Elections to Go Ahead
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service, Wednesday, 31 March 2010:
31 March 2010 - (Khartoum) – An international election observer says tribal conflicts in south Sudan should not serve as a pretext to postpone the elections.

Speaking to SRS in Khartoum, Paul Wesson from the UK-based Centre for Foreign Policy Analysis explains why he thinks the elections should be conducted as scheduled.

[Paul Wesson]: “I think the issue is that in the whole country you have 17 million people having an election and the election should not be delayed because of the actions of a few thousands people in one area. But if there is no election in that area, then that can be dealt with at a later stage, but the important thing is to have elections for the 17 million people — yes, the electorate is 17 million people - and the tribal conflicts are carried by a few thousand people who perhaps don’t have the national picture in their minds. It is possible that if an election doesn’t take place in one state or in one constituency it could be held separately at a later stage. The important thing is that the main election takes place.”

Wesson also suggested that the anti-government groups in Darfur should allow the elections process to go ahead as scheduled. He says that the Darfur issue could still be resolved after the elections.
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Two Citizens of Rumbek Comment Election Process
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service:
29 March 2010 - (Rumbek) – As the general election campaigns intensify and the election nears, SRS collected views of people in Rumbek, the capital of Lakes state.

[Vox 1 - male]: “I think the elections are going to be fair and free. I am going to vote in these coming elections because it is something I have been waiting for and the person I am going to vote for is some one that will implement the will of the southerners especially after the long struggle that took 21 years to achieve.”

[Vox 2 - female]: “The elections process is good and I think I am not a politician to comment about it. I work in the hospital. I think unity could be good for us southerners. I would like southern Sudanese to stay united. Let there be no such thing as this belongs to that and this to that. My right as a citizen is to unite with others so as to have one voice in achieving our long-awaited freedom.”

Those were views of two people in Rumbek concerning the elections.
More news from SRS - Sudan Radio Service:

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Chad's Deby wants MINURCAT to leave

Chadian president Deby says Chad can do without MINURCAT because Chad and Sudan are setting up their own force to secure the 500-kilometer border.

Phillipe Conraud, humanitarian coordinator for West Africa for the aid group Oxfam, says the absence of MINURCAT could affect the distribution of food to people in more dangerous areas along the border with Sudan. But in some of the regions most at risk for food shortages, he says there are no MINURCAT forces to begin with.

Full story from VOA, 23 March 2010: Chad Seeks Withdrawal of UN Peacekeepers Protecting Food Distribution

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Security situation in Darfur 23 March 2010 - Adapting to Climate Change in Darfur

Darfur / UNAMID Daily Media Brief 2010-03-23
EL FASHER (DARFUR), Sudan, March 24, 2010/APO:
Security situation in Darfur
The security situation in Darfur remains relatively calm.

UNAMID military forces conducted 121 patrols including routine, short range, long range, night, and Humanitarian escort patrols, covering 109 villages and Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps during the reporting period.

UNAMID police advisors also conducted 159 patrols in villages and IDP camps.

UNAMID takes part in local Climate Change Conference
UNAMID today joined policy-makers, UN agencies, donors and other stakeholders, including the Sudanese Federal Ministry of the Environment and the State Farmer’s Union, today in El Fasher, North Darfur, to take part in a two-day visioning conference entitled “Adapting to Climate Change in Darfur.”

The forum afforded the various parties the opportunity to debate and research the impact of climate change on livelihoods in Darfur and to facilitate collaboration among them to help meet the pressing needs of the region.

The issues discussed included population growth, urbanization, dwindling water supplies, as well as preparations to deal with the increasingly frequent droughts in the region and the resulting food shortages.

The participants plan to visit, tomorrow, the Golo dam, which supplies much of El Fasher’s water and is suffering from the impacts of desertification.

The organizing of the conference was led by UN Deputy Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for the Sudan, Mr. Toby Lanzer.

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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Sudan: April elections as scheduled - Election monitor deadline extended - SLM's Minnawi calls for delay

SUDAN'S elections on the 11th, 12th and 13th of April, will be keenly watched by the international community.

Sudan' elections April 2010

At an International donor conference for Darfur on the weekend, organisers in Cairo, Egypt fell far short of the $2 billion they'd hoped to raise, due to concerns over Sudan's security situation ahead of April's elections. Read more at Deutsche Welle (DW-WORLD.DE) Tuesday, 23 March 2010: Sudan instability hampering international aid to Darfur.
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April elections as scheduled

THE National Elections Commission (NEC) has repeated its commitment to conduct the April elections as scheduled.

Also, the NEC has extended the period for receiving applications from local and international observers who would wish to participate in the April elections.

However, the leader of the Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM), Mini Arkou Minnawi, says that the postponement of the April general elections, will pave the way for the conduct of free and fair elections in Sudan.

Note that the SLM is not registered as a party to participate in April’s elections. Reportedly, Mr Minnawi claims his party is being intentionally excluded from participating in the elections.

Full story here below.

NEC Still Committed To April Elections
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service, Tuesday, 23 March 2010:
(Khartoum) – The National Elections Commission has repeated its commitment to conduct the April elections as scheduled.

The NEC met on Monday in Khartoum to analyze a report by the Carter Center last week requesting NEC to delay the elections. The deputy chairman of the commission, Prof. Abdallah Ahmed Abdallah, addressed the press after the meeting.

[Prof. Abdallah Ahmed Abdallah]: “The report by the Carter Center stirred up the media. However, we would like to inform you that the report is not from NEC. The NEC has gone through the details. We saw a need to study the report in detail and that’s why we formed a committee to look into the report. And the conclusion is the elections will be conducted as scheduled, God willing, on the 11th 12th and 13th of April.”

Aside from a newly-deployed European Union mission, the Carter Center is the only international elections observation mission in Sudan.
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Election Monitor Deadline Extended
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service, Tuesday, 23 March 2010:
(Khartoum) – The National Elections Commission has extended the period for receiving applications from local and international observers who would wish to participate in the April elections.

An NEC expert on elections, Mohamed Abdul-Daiem, told the press in Khartoum on Monday that they have received hundreds of applications from NGOs willing to observe the conduct of elections in Sudan.

[Mohamed Abdul-Daiem]: “After we had declared the 21st March as the final date for accepting applications for institutions wanting to observe the elections, we continued to receive applications and we realized that many civil society organizations are still carrying out trainings. And so, in appreciation of their efforts, we decided to include them in the observation process and we extended the initial date until 30 March. This will enable these organizations to participate in the first democratic exercise in Sudan. This morning, we received 8192 applications from local observers all over the country. We are now examining these applications and we will then issue them with identity cards.”

Mohamed Abdul-Daiem was speaking to the press in Khartoum on Monday.
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Minnawi Calls For Delay in Elections
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service, Tuesday, 23 March 2010:
(Khartoum) – The leader of the Sudan Liberation Movement says that the postponement of the April general elections, will pave the way for the conduct of free and fair elections in Sudan.

Mini Arkou Minnawi, who is the senior presidential assistant, spoke to SRS from Khartoum on Tuesday.

[Mini Minnawi]: “The voices that are calling for postponement of the elections are right. Although the NCP do not accept the idea, it would have a positive impact on the security situation in Sudan. It would also impact on whether the elections will be free and fair. So we should consider all these issues, then move together towards finding the solution. But personally, I’m not part of these elections.”

Minnawi’s movement is not registered as a party to participate in April’s elections.

Minnawi claims that the NCP and the intentionally excluded his party from participating in the elections.

[Mini Minnawi]: “Our brothers in the NCP and the NEC have colluded to exclude us from these elections. But we will talk about that after the elections, because it is premature to talk about the result of the elections before we discuss the conduct of the elections.”

That was the leader of SLM, Mini Arkou Minnawi speaking to SRS from Khartoum.
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More news from SRS

Tuesday 23-Mar-2010

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Sudan Al-Merriekh football news - FIFA hearing April 15 re attacks by Egyptians on Algeria team in Cairo last Nov

Sudan Sports Latest
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service, Tuesday, 23 March 2010:
(Nairobi) – The International Football Federation (FIFA) will hold a hearing on April 15 regarding the attacks by Egyptians on Algeria team in Cairo late November.

The Algerian team claimed that Egyptian fans threw stones at the team’s bus before their world cup qualifier game against Egypt.

Egypt won the match which led to a playoff in Omdurman. Algeria qualified for South Africa’s world cup finals after beating Egypt 1-0.

Al-Merriekh arrived in Khartoum on Monday evening from Chad where they played a Champions league game against Gazelle FC on Sunday.

Al-Merriekh drew with Gazelle 1-1. Al-Hilal will return to Khartoum on Tuesday from Abidjan.

Amal Atbara will play against Al-Mawrada in Atbara in their premier league match on Tuesday evening.

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Voter registration in Darfur, Sudan has exceeded 60%

Voter registration in Darfur has exceeded 60%. UNAMID will help provide security for observers and transportation of ballots in Darfur during the vote.

"Any foreigner or organization that demand the delay of elections will be expelled sooner rather than later, " Sudan's president al-Bashir said in remarks carried by the pan-Arab Al-Jazeera television.

"We want them to observe the elections, but if they interfere in our affairs and demanded the delay, we will cut their fingers and put them under our shoes and expel them," he told supporters, according to his remarks carried by Al-Arabiya television web site."

Meanwhile, the head of the U.N.-African Union peacekeeping mission in Darfur said Monday he expected elections in Darfur to go smoothly, despite fears of violence and calls for the poll's delay.

Ibrahim Gambari, who took over the UNAMID mission in January, said he doesn't think security will be "a major consideration."

"The security will be pretty good, if our experience in the registration period was anything to go by," he told The Associated Press after attending an international fundraising conference for Darfur in Cairo.

Gambari said an agreement between Sudan and Chad to stop supporting rebels in their respective countries, a general decline in fighting in Darfur and diminishing rebel control over territory have already had a positive impact on security.

Full story by Sarah El Deeb SARAH (AP) CAIRO, Tuesday, 23 March 2010: Sudan prez threatens to expel election observers

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Monday, March 22, 2010

Coca-Cola and USAID expand global water partnership - UNICEF in Sudan marks World Water Day 2010

Most recent figures from the Sudan Household Health Survey 2006 show that about 40 per cent of the population does not have access to safe drinking water and more than two-thirds have no access to adequate sanitation.

Each year around 305,000 children die from preventable illnesses in Sudan and one of the big killers is diarrhea, which is caused by unsafe water and poor sanitation.

UNICEF in Sudan is calling for improved access to safe drinking water across the country to mark international World Water Day on March 22, which will focus on water quality this year.

Full story: UNICEF KHARTOUM/JUBA, SUDAN, 22 March, 2010 - UNICEF in Sudan marks World Water Day 2010 with focus on water quality
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The Coca-Cola Company and USAID Expand Global Water Partnership
WASHINGTON, 22 March 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire:
Today, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and The Coca-Cola Company announce an additional joint investment of US$12.7 million in their global partnership, the Water and Development Alliance (WADA). Through this investment, WADA will support eight new multi-year programs throughout sub-Saharan Africa in Angola, Burundi, Ghana, Malawi, Mozambique, Senegal, South Africa, and Tanzania. These programs will begin as 3-year initiatives, representing a shift toward longer-term efforts and exemplifying each organization’s shared commitment to lasting, sustainable solutions to global water challenges. With this new investment, USAID and The Coca-Cola Company will have committed a total of $28.1 million since 2005 to support 32 projects in 22 countries worldwide in Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia.

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France invites Sudan, not Bashir, to summit - French company to build solar plants in Sudan

France invites Sudan, not Bashir, to summit
From Reuters PARIS Mon Mar 22, 2010 8:53am EDT - excerpt:
(Reuters) - French President Nicolas Sarkozy has asked Sudan to take part in a Franco-African summit in May, but has made clear that Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir should not attend, the Elysee said on Monday.

Bashir was indicted by the International Criminal Court last year for war crimes and crimes against humanity in Darfur, and could be arrested if he stepped foot in France, which is a staunch supporter of the ICC.

Sarkozy's office said Bashir would not be welcome.

"The president has indeed sent a letter to Omar Hassan al-Bashir to ask him to nominate the person who will represent Sudan at the Franco-African summit," said an official, making clear that the Sudanese leader himself could not come.

The summit had originally been set to take place in Egypt but France was concerned that Cairo would invite Bashir in person so reached a deal to switch the meeting to the French Riviera city of Nice, leaving Paris in charge of invitations.

Bashir had to cancel a trip to Turkey last year after Ankara came under pressure from the European Union not to host him because of the ICC indictment. [...]

Sudan's state news agency SUNA said that in his letter to Bashir, Sarkozy had also expressed France's gratitude for the recent release of French hostages in the region.

Four French hostages were freed in the past two months in Darfur. Three were kidnapped in neighboring countries but aid sources said they were all being held in Darfur.

(Reporting by Yann Le Guernigou; Writing by Crispian Balmer; Editing by Giles Elgood)
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French company to build solar plants in Sudan
From Sudan Tribune, Friday, March 19, 2010 (PARIS):
Solar Euromed, a French solar power company said on Friday it signed a ten billion USD contract with the Sudanese Ministry of Energy and Mining to design, build and manage solar power plants over a 10-year period.

A solar power plant

A solar power plant

The first two projects of respectively 100 MW and 150 MW are expected to be operational by 2013/2014. They aim to provide affordable power and water supply to several affected Sudanese regions, including the Darfur region.

"Both projects will contribute to the stabilization and the development of the Sudanese population," the company said.

The solar power, which is seen as environmentally-friendly solution to produce a renewable energy, is using the Sun, structures made out of metal and glass, and greenhouse gas emission-free.

Solar Euromed, located in the Corsica island in France, employs 20 and posts a revenue of some EUR 3 million annually.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) considers this technology will experience a very steep growth in the coming years to reach up to 11% of the world total electricity installed capacity by 2050. (ST)

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Sudan Sports Latest

Sudan Sports Latest
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service:
Monday, 22 March 2010 - (Nairobi) – Four Sudanese clubs participating in two African competitions played matches on Sunday evening.

In the African Champions League, Al-Hilal drew nil-nil with Africa Sport National in Abidjan, while Al-Merriekh drew with Gazzelle FC of Chad 1-1.

In Egypt, Khartoum FC lost their African Confederation Cup game against Petrojet 3-0.

Khartoum FC will have to defeat Petrojet 4-0 in Khartoum or face elimination from the competition.

The other confederation cup game took place in Atbara where Amal hosted Costa de Sol of Mozambique and defeated their guests 4-2.

Basketball next and on Saturday in the premier league Maktaba Omdurman defeated Al-Shurta 97-81 and Al-Gipti beat Merriekh 87-73.

In the first division league there will be two games on Tuesday evening. Al-Suri will play Al-Rabie and Al-Hilal confront Bait Al-Mal.
Other News from SRS

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Video report: "WE ARE FED UP!" SUDANESE YOUTH CRY OUT FOR CHANGE

Thanks to a Sudan Watch reader in Khartoum, Sudan for sending in the following piece on youth resistance in Sudan.

Click here to visit VJ Movement and see video report by Mia Bittar, Khartoum entitled "WE ARE FED UP!" SUDANESE YOUTH CRY OUT FOR CHANGE.

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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Enough's report re LRA in S. Darfur, Sudan may not be true

THE widely publicised report from Enough that Joseph Kony had found safe haven in south Darfur as guests of the Sudan government, may not be true.

Click here to read more of "The ring of truth" by Peter Eichstaedt, Sunday, 21 March 2010 at this blog's sister site Uganda Watch.
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Flag of Lord's Resistance Army

Flag of Lord's Resistance Army

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First picture, after more than a decade, of Joseph Kony

Joseph Kony (LRA), exposed

First picture, after more than a decade, of Joseph Kony, leader of the nefarious Lord Resistance Army. The picture shows Kony (l), and his second in command Vince Otty (r). In the middle: Riek Machar, Vice President Government of South Sudan". Kony and Otty have been indicted by the International Criminal Court.

Source: May 30, 2006, Jan Pronk - Joseph Kony (LRA), exposed
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From The Daily Telegraph
Profile: Joseph Kony, leader of the Lord's Resistance Army
By David Blair, 29 November 2008:
"Africa's children will only be safe when this mystical psychopath meets his well-deserved end"

Joseph Kony

Also, see BBC News online report Uganda rebel fails to sign deal - from the archives of Sudan Watch's sister site Uganda Watch 29 November 2008.

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Donor conference aims to raise $2 billion for Darfur, Sudan

HERE below are several photos from the International donor conference for the development and the construction of Darfur, co-chaired by Egypt and Turkey with backing from the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday, 21 March 2010.

The conference is intended to raise $2 billion for infrastructure, health, water and other projects in the war-ravaged Sudanese region.

Let's hope that water projects will be a top priority in Darfur.

Assistant to Sudan's President Minni Arko Minnawi

Photo: (From L to R) Assistant to Sudan's President Minni Arko Minnawi, Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, Egypt's Foreign Minister Ahmad Aboul Gheit and Secretary-General of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu attend the international conference for reconstruction and development in Darfur of Sudan in Cairo March 21, 2010. (Reuters/Amr Abdallah Dalsh)

Minni Arkou Minnawi

Photo: Turkish Foreign Minister, Ahmet Davutoglu, right seen as he co chairs the opening of the International donor conference for the development and the construction of Darfur. At left former leader of the largest faction of the Sudanese Liberation Army, and Sudanese Senior Assistant to the President, Minni Arkou Minnawi. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

Donor conference for Darfur

Photo: Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit (R), Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoglu (C) and the Sudanese presidential aide Meni Minawi (L) attend a one-day aid conference in Cairo on March 21. (AFP/Khaled Desouki)

International donor conference for the development and the construction of Darfur

Photo: Former South African president and chairman of the African Union (AU) panel on Darfur Thabo Mbeki, center, greets Egyptian foreign minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit, right, as Turkish Foreign Minister, Ahmet Davutoglu looks on during the opening of the International donor conference for the development and the construction of Darfur. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

Former Sudanese president Abdulrahman Siwar al-Dhab

Photo: Former Sudanese president Abdulrahman Siwar al-Dhab (L) and Qatari state minister Ahmed bin Abdullah al-Mahmud arrive to at the opening session of an aid conference for Darfur in Cairo on March 21. International donors were urged Sunday to dig deep into their pockets at the conference. (AFP/Khaled Desouki)

Amr Moussa, secretary general of the Arab League

Photo: From left to right, Amr Moussa, secretary general of the Arab League, Sudanese Senior Assistant to the President, Minni Arkou Minnawi, Turkish Foreign Minister, Ahmet Davutoglu, Egyptian foreign minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit, and the secretary general of the Organization of Islamic Conference, Akmal Eddine Ihsan Oglo, are seen during the opening of the International donor conference for the development and the construction of Darfur, which co-chaired by Egypt and Turkey with backing from the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday, March 21, 2010.

The conference is intended to raise $2 billion for infrastructure, health, water and other projects in the war-ravaged Sudanese region. (AP Photo/Amr Nabi/Yahoo! News 21/3/10 10:54)

Turkish Foreign Minister, Ahmet Davutoglu

Photo: Turkish Foreign Minister, Ahmet Davutoglu, left, talks to his Egyptian counterpart Ahmed Aboul Gheit, during the opening of the International donor conference for the development and the construction of Darfur. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

International donor conference for Darfur

Photo: From left to right, Amr Moussa, Secretary General of the Arab League, Turkish Foreign Minister, Ahmet Davutoglu, Egyptian foreign minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit, and the Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Conference, Akmal Eddine Ihsan Oglo, are seen during the opening of the International donor conference for the development and the construction of Darfur. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

Qatar's State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ahmed al Mahmud

Photo: Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa (R) speaks with Qatar's State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ahmed al Mahmud before the international conference for reconstruction and development in Darfur of Sudan in Cairo March 21, 2010. (Reuters/Amr Abdallah Dalsh)

Assistant to Sudan's VP Minni Minnawi

Photo: Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa (R) shakes hands with Assistant to Sudan's President Minni Arko Minnawi before the international conference for the reconstruction and development in Darfur of Sudan in Cairo March 21, 2010. (Reuters/Amr Abdallah Dalsh)

Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Conference, Akmal Eddine

Photo: Amr Moussa, secretary general of the Arab League, right, listens to the Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Conference, Akmal Eddine Ihsan Oglo, before the opening of the International donor conference for the development and the construction of Darfur. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

Samani al Waseelah

Photo: Samani al Waseelah, Minister of State for the Sudanese Foreign Ministry, looks on before the opening of the International donor conference for the development and the construction of Darfur. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

Full story: Donors conference seeks $2 billion for Darfur by HADEEL AL-SHALCHI, The Associated Press, Sunday, March 21, 2010; 6:38 AM.

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Peace comes first - Mo Ibrahim says north should give south a chance to lead Sudan

Quote of the Day - Peace comes first
"The message to the Sudanese people is that peace comes first, permanent dialogue is an instrument to build peace and development in the country" - Joachim Chissano, former Mozambican President and African Union envoy for Madagascar, during a sideline event at the Pan African Media Conference in Kenya, Narobi, reportedly on 20 March 2010.
ALMOST 16 million Sudanese have registered for the April 11 election that will take place over three days. The elections were promised in the 2005 peace deal that ended more than two decades of north-south civil war.

There are 12 candidates running for the presidential position. There are two main contenders in the south: Salva Kiir, from the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement and Lam Akol, from the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement – Democratic Change.

Former African Union envoy for Darfur and former Organisation of African Union head, Dr Salim Ahmed Salim, says the north has to make unity attractive to South Sudan and admits that this has not been done. "My preference is to keep one country, a united Sudan," Salim said.

Mo Ibrahim says north should give south a chance to lead Sudan

This view was shared by Sudanese born British mobile tycoon Mo Ibrahim: "I hope Sudan stays one country, so that one day we can fix it. Because once it is broken, we can never put it back together again."

Ibrahim said that the north should give the south a chance to lead the entire country. Ibrahim suggested that North Sudan vote for a president from the south. This, he says, will convince the south to vote for unity in the 2011 referendum, when voters will decide whether to secede from the north.
"I always say one way to the miracle of solving the country’s problems, is why don’t we have a president from southern Sudan? Why don’t all the candidates say ok, let us have a president from the south? It does not matter whether he or she as long as it is someone from the south who is fit to run the country."
Source: IPS News report by Amelia Lawrence, Saturday, 20 March 2010, African Leaders Call for Peaceful Elections

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Saturday, March 20, 2010

IDP in Zalingei urge Darfurians not to reject Doha agreement between LJM and Sudanese gov't

IDP in Zalingei urge Darfurians not to reject framework agreement
From Radio Dabanga, Saturday, 20 March 2010:
ZALINGEI (20 Mar.) – An IDP in Zalingei camp urged people of Darfur not to reject the Doha agreement between the Liberation and Justice Movement and the government. He told Radio Dabanga that the success or failure of the agreement depends on to which extend it responds to the demands of the Darfurians which is security, compensation and land tenure.
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‘Both agreements equal’
KHARTOUM (20 Mar.) – Ghaza Salah al Din, advisor to the president and responsible for the Darfur file said that the agreement with the Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) is not less than the agreement with the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM). He added JEM has no right to reject the new framework agreement.

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JEM will not accept deal between LJM and Sudanese govt

The United Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) is composed of ten Darfur anti-government factions. The recently formed group is headed by Doctor El-Tigani El-Sissi, with Abdel Aziz Abu Namousha as vice-chairman.

Speaking to SRS from Doha, a senior official of the LJM, Taj al-Din Basher Niam, said the signing of the ceasefire deal is an indication that a permanent agreement is about to be reached.

Speaking to SRS on Thursday from Doha, the Chief JEM negotiator in Doha, Ahmed Tugud, said that JEM will not accept the deal between the LJM and government because JEM signed a similar document with the government.

GONU Signs Darfur Deal with LJM in Doha
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service, Friday, 19 March 2010:
(Nairobi/Doha) – The Government of National Unity and the Liberation Justice Movement signed a three-month ceasefire deal on Thursday.

The deal was signed by the Presidential Advisor in charge of the Darfur dossier, Dr. Ghazi Salah al-Din on behalf of the government and the chairman of the LJM, Altijani Sisi in Doha. The signing ceremony was attended by the Vice-President, Ali Osman Taha, mediators and the international observers.

Speaking to SRS from Doha, a senior official of the LJM, Taj al-Din Basher Niam, said the signing of the ceasefire deal is an indication that a permanent agreement is about to be reached.

[Taj al-Din Basher Niam]: “The agreement includes a cease-fire for a period of 90 days which can also be renewed and the reason behind this agreement is to create a good environment for the peace negotiations. And as for the framework agreement, it is a political agreement and it includes guidelines on how to reach peace. It also includes general principles and other issues which are to be debated. We think we can now sit with the African mediators as well as the Qatari ones and then come up with a date to start the negotiations to talk about some of the main issues such as the power and wealth sharing and also security conditions along with the other issues which we consider to be important for solving the Darfur crisis.

Speaking to SRS on Thursday from Doha, the Chief JEM negotiator in Doha, Ahmed Tugud, said that JEM will not accept the deal between the LJM and government because JEM signed a similar document with the government.

[Ahmed Tugud]: “Because we think any attempt to divide people and to enable others who are not on the battlefield to sign a framework agreement and participate in the negotiation process will break down the negotiation process. It will endanger the unity of the Darfur people and they will lose rights that may come with any agreement that is the reason behind our stand to reject the agreement. There is no point in signing a framework agreement other than the framework agreement that was originally signed, and this agreement discusses the same issues signed by the Justice and Equality Movement, for that reason we are against that position and we express our complete rejection of it. The movement is evaluating the situation from different aspects and studying the choices and the movement’s position regarding the peace process.”

In response, Taj Al-Din Basher Niam of the LJM termed JEM’s threat to withdraw from the talks as political suicide.

[Taj Al-Din Basher Niam]: “Nobody can approve the withdrawal of JEM from the peace negotiations just because another movement signed a peace agreement with the government. If JEM did that it will be a bad political move and it will send a bad image to the Darfurians and the Sudanese. Anyway, we hope that they don’t do that but they are free and have the choice to decide, just like they in the beginning decided to go by themselves to sign an agreement and conduct negotiations alone with the government. We don’t have any problem, if they want to join us they can and if they don’t want to they can leave but our hope is that we all come together because no movement or even two movements will be able to bring peace, it will only come when everybody participates.”

Taj Al-Din Basher Niam was speaking to SRS from Doha.
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ULJM Darfur Coalition Forms Executive Body
From SRS - Sudan Radio Service 3 February 2010:
3 February 2010 - (Darfur)– The recently-formed coalition of Darfur anti-government groups, the United Liberation and Justice Movement, announced the formation of its executive body in Doha, Qatar on Tuesday.

The group is to be headed by Doctor El-Tigani El-Sissi, with Abdel Aziz Abu Namousha as vice-chairman.

Abdel Aziz Abu Namousha spoke to SRS from Doha on Tuesday.

[Abdel Aziz Abu Namousha]: “We think unity is the first step towards resolving the Darfur issue because the stance of separate movements greatly affects our people. An agreement was reached that the group should be lead by Dr. El-Tigani El-Sissi with two deputies Abdel Aziz Abu Namousha and Haider Qalokuma Atim. We formed a presidential council, now consisting of six people, but it’s open to others who might join later and increase the council’s number.”

Abdel Aziz went on to express his disappointment that JEM signed a ceasefire agreement with the Government of National Unity but refuse to include other Darfur movements in the peace deal.

[Abdel Aziz Abu Namousha]: “I think unity can’t be achieved unless some people abandon their positions. And since these brothers in LJM have committed themselves to the principles of abandoning their political quest, I think real unity that will lead to peace will be achieved. Unity that will be able to deliver all the rights to Darfurians. But the unity of the movement is not enough. To achieve the rights of Darfurians, we need all Darfurians to come together in order to recover the power from the central government.”

The United Liberation and Justice Movement is composed of ten Darfur anti-government factions and is expected to sign a framework agreement with the government before entering into negotiations.
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North Darfur state

Photo: Sudanese policemen stand guard as thousands gather at a rally attended by President Omar al-Beshir in El-Fasher, the capital of North Darfur state, on February 2010. The United States said Friday the Sudanese government's ceasefire with another rebel movement is "a very important step" toward establishing peace in the western Darfur region. (AFP/File/Ashraf Shazly Fri Mar 19 2010)

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Unity State: 13 killed in clashes between south Sudan army, Arab al-Misseriya tribesmen

13 people killed after fresh fighting between SPLA and Misseriya
Source: Sudan Tribune, Saturday 20 March 2010 - "Somebody somewhere is pushing them (the Misseriya). They have been used for many years," Kuol said.
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13 killed in clashes between south Sudan army, Arab tribesmen
Source: Xinhua, Friday, 19 March 2010:
Clashes erupted between south Sudan's army and armed Arab tribesmen on Wednesday in an oil- producing state, leaving at least 13 people dead, an army spokesman said Friday.

"These events took place on March 17 when an armed group of al- Misseriya tribe attacked the barracks of the south Sudan army in Unity state, south Sudan spokesman Kuol Diem told Xinhua.

"We stood up to the armed nomads and forced them to retreat," he said, noting that the confrontation left 11 tribesmen and two south Sudan soldiers killed.

Diem accused unnamed sides of inciting the al-Misseriya tribesmen to target the south Sudan army and create disorder.

"There might be political motives behind these frequent attacks, " he added.

The Arab al-Misseriya tribe, hailing from the western Sudanese region of Kurdufan, leaves their hometowns every summer in pursuit of grass and water for their cattle, taking a traditional route that is stretched to the disputed Abyei area on the borders between north and south Sudan.

After the end of a civil war five years ago, south Sudan authorities launched a campaign to disarm the people, and obligated al-Misseriya tribesmen not to bring in guns while crossing Bahr al-Arab area in the southwest during their annual march.
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Twenty more wounded from clashes in Zalingei
Source: Radio Dabanga, Friday, 19 March 2010:
ZALINGEI (19 Mar.) – Twenty persons were injured and transferred to Zalingei hospital after renewed clashes between the Misseriya and the Nuwayba in southeast Zalingei yesterday. A source told Radio Dabanga that six were seriously injured and were due to be transferred to Nyala for further treatment. The situation remained tense. There were reports of pillage, looting and destruction, the source added.
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Three SPLA Soldiers Killed in Clashes with Messiriya
Source: Sudan Radio Service, 17 March 2010:
Wednesday, 17 March 2010 - (Bentiu) - Three SPLA soldiers were killed and four others were wounded when Messiriya gunmen clashed with the SPLA in Abiemnhom, on the border of Abyei and Unity state on Friday.

The injured soldiers are receiving treatment in Abyei hospital.

SRS correspondent James Mabor Puot describes the incident.

[James Mabor Puot]: “The Messiriya were going towards the SPLA camp when they met SPLA soldiers who were on patrol and then they fought. The Messirya were not even moving with their cattle, they were armed with heavy guns. In the fight yesterday they overwhelmed the SPLA soldiers. When they met, both sides started shooting one another. Abiemnhom is the area where fighting between SPLA and Messiriya took place. Last week, there was a big meeting between the Messiryia leaders and the leaders of Unity state in which the Messiriya were asked to disarm when they travel in Unity state but they refused to be disarmed. They said they don’t even want SPLA soldiers at the border; they only want the police to be deployed there. But the government has yet to react.”

There were no indications of how many Messiriya were killed or injured in the incident.
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Stolen Oil
Source: Strategy Page, Friday, 19 March 2010 - excerpt:
March 12, 2010: The GOSS reported that a south Sudan military base in Unity state was attacked by a group of nomadic raiders. Three people were killed in the attack, two of them identified as Sudan Peoples Liberation Army (SPLA) soldiers. The attackers were from the Misseriya tribe, which is generally regarded as a pro-northern tribe. Unity state has oil fields. The GOSS is trying to limit the number of guns nomads (generally pastoralists herding cattle) can carry as they move their herds. The south's gun control initiative has caused some additional friction.

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Sudan re-arrests 15 JEM Darfur rebels

Sudan re-arrests Darfur rebels
AFP (KHARTOUM) Thursday, 18 March 2010:
Sudanese authorities have re-arrested 15 members of the rebel Justice and Equality Movement after releasing them following a truce with the Darfur group, their lawyer said on Wednesday.

The rebels were arrested when they went to Al-Fashir, the capital of north Darfur, Adam Bakr Hassab said. [...]
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JEM reiterates demand to postpone election and Khartoum re-arrests rebels
Sudan Tribune (KHARTOUM) Thursday, 18 March 2010:
Adam Bakr Hassab, said today the Sudanese authorities re-arrested them when they went to Al-Fashir, capital of North Darfur. He said they are still working to find out where they are held.

Following their release, Sudanese authorities had ordered them to remain in Khartoum, but many left the capital to western Sudan region of Darfur, unconfirmed reports say.

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Friday, March 19, 2010

VOA Thank You 17 March 2010

HERE is a copy of a nice surprise email received on Wednesday, 17 March 2010 from Jessica Stahl of the Voice of America (VOA), thanking me for linking to VOA here at Sudan Watch. Here's sending my thanks to Jessica. Thanks Jessica, looking forward to keeping in touch.
Subject: VOA's Sudan elections coverage

Dear Ms. Jones,

Hi there. I’m Jessica, writing to you from the Voice of America (http://www.voanews.com). I just wanted to send a quick note to thank you for pointing your Sudan Watch readers to our special report page on Sudan's upcoming elections. Your blog has been a great resource for myself and our reporters in following the news from Sudan, and we hope we can be as useful for you and your readers.

You can follow VOA's Sudan reporting via our RSS feed at http://feeds.feedburner.com/VOA/Sudan to see what we're working on. And our special report page will keep evolving as the elections get closer, so we hope you'll check back periodically at http://www.voanews.com/sudan.

Thanks again. Feel free to be in touch if you have any questions, comments or ideas for us.

Best,

Jessica Stahl
Presidential Management Fellow
VOA English

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SLA Minni Minawi welcomes new Doha framework agreement for Darfur peace

Minni Minawi welcomes new Doha framework agreement for Darfur peace
From Radio Dabanga, Friday, 19 March 2010:
KHARTOUM (19 Mar.) – The Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) led by Minni Minawi supports the new Doha Framework Agreement between the Government and the Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) which was signed in Doha yesterday. Mini Minawi said that he supports Tijani Sissi, who signed the agreement and stands for achieving a just and comprehensive peace in Darfur. Minawi is the leader of an ex-rebel faction that signed a peace deal with the government in 2006 in Abuja, Nigeria.

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Carter Center calls on Sudanese National Elections Commission to delay elections

The Carter Center recommends that the National Elections Commission consider exercising its power to delay the election.

Carter Center Calls on NEC to Postpone Elections
Report from SRS - Sudan Radio Service:
Friday, 19 March 2010 - (Nairobi) – The Carter Center has issued a statement saying that the elections in Sudan, “remain at risk on multiple fronts, including the ability of candidates to campaign freely".

The elections watchdog also expressed its concerns about delays in the NEC’s logistical preparations.

The Center recommends that the National Elections Commission consider exercising its power to delay the election.

Apart from a newly-deployed European Union mission, the Carter Center is the only international elections observation mission in Sudan.

The Center’s statement urged the NEC to make a decision as quickly as possible about any delay in the election date "so that stakeholders have time to adjust their plans."

The Center also voiced concerned about lack of transparency in the post-election procedures, such as how and when the results will be released from polling stations.
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The Carter Center is suggesting that next month’s Sudanese elections be postponed for up to 10 days.

Full story: VOA News Thursday, 18 March 2010 - Carter Center says Sudanese Elections Commission Should Consider 10-Day Delay in April Vote

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