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After Abyei Killings, S. Sudan Says UN Doesn't Protect from Misseriya

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, May 9 -- Following the May 4 killing of a UN peacekeeper and the Ngok Dinka paramount chief Kuol Deng Kuol, UN Peacekeeping Herve Ladsous refused to answer Inner City Press questions about the attack.

  On May 9, Inner City Press put three questions to South Sudan's ambassador to the UN Francis Deng -- the older brother of Kuol Deng Kuol -- about the attack and murder of his brother.

  Why doesn't UN Peacekeeping's UNISFA mission do a better job of protecting civilians in Abyei, particularly from the Misseriya?

  Deng said that although the mandate adopted by the Security Council should permit such protection -- he cited the Rwanda genocide -- UN Peacekeeping is not interpreting it that way. He said the UN Peacekeeping mission does not have credibility, leading to the Misseriya laying siege to a convoy with the Ngok Dinka chief inside.

  This same issue arose in Cote d'Ivoire, where UN Peacekeepers stood by as perceived Laurent Gbagbo supporters in the Nahibly camp for internally displaced people were killed and the camp burned down. A UN special rapporteur told Inner City Press the peacekeepers said they were not to engage with non state actors.

  Ladsous' DPKO denied it, then repeatedly refused questions -- and now this.

  Deng and South Sudan are calling for an investigation. But can the UN, particularly Ladsous' DPKO, investigate itself?

I nner City Press asked Deng of reports that Misseriya chief Bobo Nimir blaming UNISFA and consulting with South Kordofan government Ahmed Haroun, who is indicted by the International Criminal Court.

  Deng replied that Bobo Nimir fils has previously acknowledge the existence of Dinka land, and so now may just be channeling Sudan government statements.

  Sudan, meanwhile, is increasingly angry about the Security Council's failure to condemn in a press statement the attacks on Umm Rawaba and Abu Karshola.

Inner City Press is told of a new draft resolution on UNISFA, on which the United States has the pen.

  Meanwhile, after Ladsous' refusal to answer Inner City Press' questions on Abyei, this was finally sent by Ban Ki-moon's spokesperson's office:

Subject: On Abyei.
From: UN Spokesperson - Do Not Reply [at]
Date: Thu, May 9, 2013 at 1:10 PM
To: Matthew.Lee [at]

In response to your questions on the recent attack in Abyei:

The UN mission in the area will begin an investigation into the attack as soon as the security situation allows.

The Department of Peacekeeping Operations is confident that its peacekeepers responded robustly to the incident.

The visit to the Diffra area was made at the rest of Ngok Dinka representatives who wanted to visit returnee locations.

   But is Ladsous' DPKO "robust" in protecting civilians from the Misseriya (or mobs in Cote d'Ivoire)? Watch this site.

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