June 30, 2010 (Khartoum) — The Sudanese government on Wednesday released Hassan al-Turabi, his son said. Hassan al-Turabi was arrested in a government crackdown in May after he criticized April’s elections which brought back Bashir to power. “The security service told me to come to their office this evening. When I arrived my father was…
Ann Brown, Refugees International
For Immediate Release
June 29, 2010 (Washington, D.C.) — Nearly two million Southern Sudanese living in northern Sudan are at great risk for targeted violence and statelessness in the aftermath of the planned January 2011 referendum on Southern independence, Refugees International said in a report released today.
The advocacy group calls on the United Nations, the U.S. Government and other nations to assist in the pre-referendum voluntary return of Southern Sudanese displaced in Khartoum and implement other measures to prevent violence and loss of legal rights by Southerners in the North and Northerners in the South.
“Southerners displaced in Khartoum expressed grave concern about their physical safety following the referendum. Many don’t trust Sudan’s security forces to protect them, and it is unlikely that UNMIS – the UN peacekeeping force – will be in a position to offer physical protection,” stated Jennifer Smith, Refugees International advocate and report co-author.
“The U.S. and other nations should provide transportation support for those displaced Southern Sudanese who want to return home – not only for their safety, but to lessen the potential for North-South violence in the aftermath of the referendum.” Statements by National Congress Party officials and articles in a newspaper owned by President Omar al Bashir’s uncle questioning why Southerners should stay in the North after the referendum have contributed to Southerners’ fears.
Despite safety concerns, many Southern Sudanese are achieving economic and educational success in Khartoum and worry about forced expulsion.
Press Release June 29, 2010 (New York) — The head of the United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) today welcomed the appointment of an independent body that will oversee preparations for a referendum on whether southern Sudan should secede from the rest of the country. Haile Menkerios, who is also the Secretary-General’s Special Representative, congratulated…
June 28, 2010 (Khartoum) — Sudan on Monday announced it will close down its borders with Libya, a reference seen as a sign of Khartoum’s growing frustration with Libya over its refusal to expel Darfur’s rebel Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) leader, Khalil Ibrahim. The decision comes just one day after Sudan asked Libya to extradite…
USSP Press Release
June 27, 2010 (SSNA) — It is indeed a matter of great concern that South Sudan is currently passing through a worrying state of insecurity. But sad still is the fact that most of the procedures taken by the GoSS or even the local authorities in addressing these serious developments have been massively sub-standard and marred by ethnic prejudices.
Now as I write this release, the whole of the Upper Nile State lives in a huge state of terror and insecurity. It must be remembered that, since the tribal confrontations that happened between the Chollo and Dinka Padang Communities during the CPA celebrations one and a half years ago has led to a terrible fall out in relationship between the communities and made worse by issues of controversial and disputable land rights. However, it was the government intervention from the GOSS, a move much marred by tribal favouritism that eventually promoted the current degree of enmity and antagonism that leaves too little room for any sensible reconciliation.
Sadly enough the situation in Malakal the capital of the Upper Nile state, has deteriorated drastically in the last few weeks following the unaccounted for killing of the Chollo Para-mount chief, Oyath Odhok.
However, the procedures taken thereafter by the GoSS ministers of Interior Brigadier Gier Chuang Aloung and his counterpart the former Minister of Legal Affairs that led the South Sudan Legislative Assembly (SSLA) to unanimously strip all the SPLM-DC’s MPs, Hon. Samuel Aban AchIen, Hon. Andrew Okony Ayom, Hon. Martha Angar Kur, and Hon. Onyoti Adigo Nyikwec from their immunities, then followed immediately by what in fact amounted to arbitrary arrests, contradicts the spirit of democracy, human rights and even the basic legal procedures.
In Malakal it was a different scenario where Hon. Mustafa (Mayak) Gai of the Upper Nile State Legislative Assembly, and citizens, Dr. Odol (George) a pharmacist, Ayul Liebo, Oluny Ackiek Oluny and others were kidnapped at night and taken to unknown destinations. There are reports they were badly tortured and that their tormented families could not have access to them. UNMIS Human Rights and Red Cross were not even allowed to see them.
June 26, 2010 (SSNA) — North and South Sudan are set to begin secession negotiations on July 5. The announcement comes three days after the two parties signed an agreement hosted by Addis Ababa. On June 23, South Sudan’s ruling party, SPLM, and NCP, signed an agreement in Mekelle, Ethiopia. Under the agreement, the two…
June 25, 2010 (SSNA) —This week, fight over who owns the Nile has reached political peak, with Cairo leading the way on diplomatic fronts. During the colonial era, Egypt was the only nation to oversee and manage the use of Nile waters. But now, things have changed.
Egyptian Finance Minister Youssef Botrous Ghali travelled to Burundi earlier this week for talks regarding the treaty, al-Masry al-Youm reported.
"This is serious," said Henriette Ndombe, executive director of the intergovernmental Nile Basin Initiative, established in 1999 to oversee the negotiation process and enhance co-operation. "This could be the beginning of a conflict."
Omar Suleiman, Egypt’s intelligence chief, is in talks with Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni in Kampala over differences concerning the recent Nile basin agreement, Egyptian daily al-Masry al-Youm reported on Thursday.
"We were saying: ‘This is crazy! You cannot claim these rights without obligations”, Isaac Musumba, Uganda’s state minister for regional affairs, and its Nile representative, told the Guardian.
In May, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Uganda, and Tanzania signed a "River Nile Basin Co-operative Framework" agreement. Kenya which was first seen as less interested in the agreement later signed on. Burundi, along with Congo, abstained from signing the agreement.
Under the agreement, each state’s share of the Nile Basin water will depend on climate, economic, population, social, and other important issues.
“All the upstream states saw the move by Egypt (Sudan has a more passive role) as "tantamount to an insult", Minelik Alemu Getahun, one of Ethiopia’s negotiators, was quote by the Guardian as saying.
If the deal is ratify, a body to decide on water allocation will be set up without Egypt and Sudan that need the river most. This causes panic in Cairo.
The 1929 bilateral treaty gave Cairo a power to veto any water development project in the Nile basin.
In 1959, Egypt and Sudan signed a deal that gave them "full utilisation of the Nile waters".
June 24, 2010 (Washington) — U.S. Chargé d’Affaires to Sudan, Robert Whitehead; the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the Government of Sudan, Ambassador Rahamatalla Mohamed Osman; Under Secretary for Management, Patrick F. Kennedy; Assistant Secretary for Africa Affairs, Johnnie Carson; and Managing Director Program Development, Coordination and Support of the Bureau of…
By Reuters June 23, 2010 (Khartoum) — Sudan on Wednesday denied trying to import arms on a ship intercepted in Cyprus, saying explosives on board had been ordered by a mining company. Cypriot authorities on Tuesday said they had prevented a cargo vessel from leaving their waters since June 11, saying it contained prohibited military…
By Reuters June 22, 2010 (Nicosia) — Cyprus has intercepted a vessel carrying military equipment thought to be bound for Sudan, under an arms embargo by the United Nations and the European Union. Authorities said on Tuesday the Antigua and Barbuda flagged cargo vessel had been prevented from leaving Cypriot waters since June 11, when…