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Asked to Confirm Sudan Attack on Jau, UN Cites Separate Internal Fight in Bor, "Bad Mistake"

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, December 7 -- After declining for two days to confirm the Sudanese Armed Forces' incursion into Jau in South Sudan, when Inner City Press asked for a third time about Jau on Wednesday, the UN responded with an entirely separate violent attack, in Bor County, saying 37 were killed but the UN couldn't say who was responsible. Video here, from Minute 16:09.

Jau, which neighboring Sudan entered over the weekend, is entirely separate from Bor, to which the UN Mission in South Sudan went and from which it evacuated four wounded people to Juba.

A South Sudan diplomat later on Wednesday told Inner City Press that the UN "needs to go to Unity State;" for the UN to respond to questions about Jau in Unity with answers about Bor is "a bad mistake."

South Sudan suffers the double whammy of attacks from Khartoum as well as violence with renegades like General George Athor. But the UN, with peacekeeping missions not only in South Sudan but also Darfur and Abyei, should be able to keep such attacks separate, as they have different implications.

While it was Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Martin Nesirky who has in the first instance fielded Inner City Press' questions about Sudan's entry into Hau in South Sudan, and finally responded about the separate and distinct violence in Bor, the blame may be assigned to the Department of Peacekeeping Operations.

Questions like the one about Jau are referred to DPKO; somehow the team of Herve Ladsous at DPKO felt it is acceptable to not provide confirmation for three days running to a bloody cross border attack in an area they have a mission in. What is DPKO doing?

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These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

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