Council Touts South Sudan, UN Can't Act in Kordofan, Darfur
July 13 -- As South Sudan
was recommended for UN membership
by the Security Council on Wednesday, there were differing views on
the border fighting in Southern Kordofan and ongoing conflict in
Darfur in Western Sudan.
asked US Permanent Representative Susan Rice about the future of Blue
Nile and Southern Kordofan states, which she had mentioned in her
remarks inside the Council, and about Darfur, which she had not.
in Southern Kordofan, “the UN forces are now by necessity having to
withdraw, their ability to act and implement their prior mandate no
with the UN's responses to Inner City Press for two days
its predominantly Egyptian peacekeepers in Southern Kordofan cannot
patrol or use force.
peacekeeping chief Alain Le Roy,
when Inner City Press asked him later on Wednesday, added that if the
peacekeepers see someone being killed, they will react as
humanitarians. See video here.
Representative Daffa-Alla Elhag Ali Osman, for his part, after saying
that North and South Sudan
are two houses with a single extended though perhaps divorced family
in them, told Inner City Press that the UNMIS mandate is over and the
peacekeepers must leave. Video here.
Khartoum would never block
humanitarian access, even as one of his ministers threatens to halt
the operations of NGOs in South Kordofan and Darfur.
mentioned in the Council speeches by the United Kingdom and Portugal,
for example, but not by the US. Asked about this omission, Ambassador
are very much still focused on the crisis in Darfur. It's the subject
of deep concern to the United States, to President Obama, and all in
our government. We have not let up in our focus and attention, even
as we have worked very hard to support the independence of South
Sudan and successful implementation of the CPA. We will have ample
time this month in the Council to give the attention that is
necessary, and that will remain sustained attention to Darfur, as we
renew the UNAMID mandate.”
questioned the US urging the rebel movements in Darfur to sign a
peace “agreement” that most of the groups, from the Justice and
Equality Movement to the SLA faction of Abdel Wahid al Nur, have
rejected. We will have more on this.
Riek Machar in UNSC July 13, Susan Rice at right,
Darfur not shown
Khalil Ibrahim remains trapped in Tripoli despite requests that
the UN help to get him out, Abdel Wahid al Nur is in France, which
sent to speak in the Council its new minister for French citizens
overseas, the retired judo champion David Douillet, who spoke
apparently only to the French media and not at the stakeout.
Republic of South Sudan's vice president Riek Machar came out to
speak, and when Inner City Press asked him about this government's
relations with SPLM-North in Southern Kordofan, he replied mostly
about Abyei and the requirement for a referendum there. Video here.
steps is the arrival of Ethiopian peacekeepers -- without a human
rights monitoring mechanism -- who will begin arriving, according to
Le Roy, on July 20 via El Obeid.
long history, to put it mildly, between Machar and John Garang,
called the father of South Sudan, Inner City Press asked Machar how
he thought Garang would view the developments.
Machar said, citing a Garang statement quoted in South Africa's
speech to the Council. And then he and his large delegation were
gone, waiting for UN General Assembly admission on July 14. We'll be
US Mission's transcript of Ambassador Rice's stakeout:
Press: On Sudan, you said in your statement that, "the
Government of Sudan has wavered in its commitment to this June 28th
agreement about South Kordofan." It seems like they've actually
kind of totally broken it. They've said that they don't stand behind
it. What's your understanding of where it stands? What can the UN
peacekeepers that are there do even pending an agreement? And also
Darfur, which I didn't see mentioned -- what does today's development
in South Sudan mean for the people in Darfur? Is there a loss of
focus? What are the implications for the conflict in Darfur?
First of all, with respect to Southern Kordofan, the Government
of Sudan did sign an agreement. And it would be most unfortunate if
they formally reneged on that agreement. We've been concerned to see
that senior leaders in Khartoum have expressed reservations and
concerns about that agreement. It was an important step, and our
view is that it ought to be respected and followed by an immediate
agreement on a cessation of hostilities. I also mentioned in my
statement the United States' deep regret that the Government of Sudan
has compelled the withdrawal of UNMIS forces from the North, and this
will have significant implications for the protection of civilians
and humanitarian access in Southern Kordofan. As the UN forces are
now by necessity having to withdraw, their ability to act and
implement their prior mandate no longer pertains. And they are in the
mode of withdrawal so they are not going to-unless the government of
Sudan changes its mind-have the ability to do what we think is very
important for them to do.
to Darfur, we are very much still focused on the crisis in
Darfur. It's the subject of deep concern to the United States, to
President Obama, and all in our government. We have not let up in our
focus and attention, even as we have worked very hard to support the
independence of South Sudan and successful implementation of the CPA.
We will have ample time this month in the Council to give the
attention that is necessary, and that will remain sustained attention
to Darfur, as we renew the UNAMID mandate. And certainly, our efforts
on behalf of the people of Darfur continue.
We'll see. Watch this site.
* * *
NGOs, UN Troops “Cannot Patrol,” S. Sudan
12 -- As in Sudan the government of Omar al Bashir
threatened to shut down humanitarian NGOs in Southern Kordofan and
Darfur for allegedly helping insurgents, the UN on Tuesday confirmed
to Inner City Press that the soldiers it still has in Southern
Kordofan and Blue Nile states do
not patrol, and presumably would not
defend civilians attacked in front of them and their bases.
already complaints about inaction by UN peacekeepers, particularly
the Egyptians in Southern Kordofan and the Zambians in Abyei, since
expired on July 9 it has become official: “the
peacekeepers who were part of the UN Mission in Sudan cannot patrol
because they do not have a mandate to do so,” as UN spokesman
Martin Nesirky answered Inner City Press.
they are still
there. Does this mean that if civilians were being slaughtered right
outside their base, they would do nothing?
its July 12 noon briefing:
the Northern Sudan Secretary for the Political Sector,
Gudbi al Mahadi, has said that NGOs face being ejected from both
Southern Kordofan and Darfur on charges of providing logistical
support to insurgents. So I am wondering, is that something that the
UN system, whether in its wind-down capacity or UNAMID [African
Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur] in its still-robust
capacity, are they aware of that? Do they oppose that? And also now
that the resolution has been passed by the Council, what exactly is
the, sort of, the orders in which the peacekeepers in, still in
Kadugli and other places in Southern Kordofan, are under? Are they
allowed to go out of their base if they witness…?
the short answer to that is they are not allowed to
patrol. They do not have the mandate to do so. What the resolution
says, as I think you all recall, is that it requests the
Secretary-General to consult with the parties, the African Union
High-level Implementation Panel and other partners and present to the
Security Council options for UN support to new security arrangements
in Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan states in line with the 28 June
Framework Agreement between the Government of Sudan and the Sudan
People’s Liberation Movement-North. So what I am trying to say is
that the Council has asked the Secretary-General to provide options
what could be done further. The short answer, as I said at the
beginning, is no; the peacekeepers who were part of the UN Mission in
Sudan cannot patrol because they do not have a mandate to do so. Does
that mean that we are concerned? Yes, it does, because clearly
humanitarian workers need to be able to go about their work to help
the people in Southern Kordofan. And they are not able to do so with
the level of confidence that they could before.
Kiir & Bashir in Juba, future in Kordofan and
Darfur not shown
thanks for that... Who in the UN system is actually… is
there any involvement by the UN in talks if they exist between
Khartoum and SPLM [Sudan People’s Liberation Movement] North about
[Southern] Kordofan? I’ve heard there is not a process in Addis
anymore, but are there processes inside Sudan proper and is Mr.
[Haile] Menkerios or [Thabo] Mbeki or somebody [from the UN
Mr. Menkerios is now going to be Special Envoy of the
Secretary-General to deal with the parties on the remaining details
of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. That is an element of work
that clearly remains to be done. And obviously Mr. Menkerios has the
expertise to do that. I think that’s… I’d leave it at that at
what is the UN
doing? We'll have more on this.
evening in the Security Council chamber, with no other
journalists around, a delegation from South Sudan came to meet with
German foreign minister Guido Westerwelle and his entourage,
including the able German Africa Director, just in from
the independence celebration in Juba. As emerged
Monday night, Angela Merkel is in Kenya
(where he was Ambassador), and then on to Angola, where oil is
presumably a or the major topic.
evening meeting was to
plan the events of Wednesday, when the Council will vote on UN
membership for the Republic of South Sudan, and then have a debate,
presumably including these issues in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile,
if not Darfur. We'll be there - watch