Darfur, UN Can't Confirm Who Controls Jebel Marra, Can't Protect
Matthew Russell Lee
NATIONS, March 9 -- Ever since the Sudanese government and JEM rebels
announced a cease fire and the UN quickly praised it, there have been
reports of an upsurging in fighting in Darfur's Jebel Marra between
the government and another rebel group, the SLA. Inner City Press
repeatedly asked the UN to confirm the death tolls reported by the
SLA, to no avail.
March 8, the
government announced it had full control of Jebel Marra. At the UN
later that day, after some happy talk about efforts for gender
equality through UN Police, Inner City Press sought to ask about
Darfur. But there was no noon briefing that day. Inner City Press
sought answers elsewhere.
March 9, Inner
City Press asked UN spokesman Martin Nesirky about the competing
critiques of the SLA and government: both in their way say the UN is
doing nothing. The government mocks the UN Mission UNAMID's over 60
troops, who let the SLA take from them seven four by fours, more than
50 automatic weapons and communications equipment, without a fight.
Abdel-Wahid Al-Nur said of UNAMID, "They are unable to protect
civilians nor are they writing reports to document what happened so
what exactly are they doing?"
City Press asked Nesirky if the UN could confirm or deny that the
government retook control of Jebel Marra. "I don't have anything
on that," Nesirky said. "I need to find out." Video
from Minute 1:09:36
asked for a UN response to the government's claim that it told UNAMID
to take a different route to Jebel Marra. "I don't know the
answer to that," Nesirky said, not even offering to find out.
from Minute 1:09:28.
UNAMID in El Fasher "Super-camp" - Lockheed
and protection of civilians not shown
have was a read out statement about the UN's surrender on March 5. It
was 63 UNAMID personnel,
Nesirky corrected, not 61. Fifty six were in
the "protection force." If they can't or won't protect
themselves, how could they protect civilians?
UN appears to
be in a see no evil, hear no evil mode about Darfur, and Sudan more
generally. This was supposed to be one of the UN's main commitments.
What happened? Watch this site.
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Confirms Fighting in Darfur, Says JEM Not Exclusive, Deby Says UN
Matthew Russell Lee
NATIONS, March 5 -- After days of the UN saying it had no access to
Jebal Marra in Darfur, and could not confirm the fighting there, late
Friday top UN peacekeeper Alain Le Roy told Inner City Press that
yes, we confirm confirm fighting between the SLA Abdul Wahid and the
asked for the response of the UN, which praised the deal between
Khartoum and JEM, to JEM's later statement that it would renounce the
deal if similar offers were made to other Darfur rebel groups. Video here,
from Minute 3:19. Le Roy sputtered that JEM "has not
repudiated the framework agreement."
Roy claimed that
the Security Council was clear that "no one will have
exclusivity of signing anything with the Sudanese authority."
But who from the UN spoke with JEM's Khalil Ibrahim?
UN's Le Roy at stakeout, talk with JEM and oversight
of Deby not shown
also asked Le Roy about his agreement with Chad's Idriss Deby, that
the UN mission can remain only two more months and then must start
leaving. How would this be possible, in the rainy season which begins
in May? It will be difficult, Le Roy said. Video here,
Inner City Press asked about Deby's anger at those who say he did not
want any observers to his upcoming election. Le Roy quickly responded
that elections observations were not in MINURCAT's mandate. Even in
the most egregious cases?
So it's like the
UN's UNAMA in Afghanistan, snarked one cynic.
source later told Inner City Press that the backdrop to Chad's
President Deby ordering the UN to start leaving was his accusation
that the MINURCAT mission was "spying." This was said with
a certain glee.
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