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Bombing of Khartoum Arms Facility Was Raised in UNSC But Went Nowhere

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, November 7 -- Two weeks after explosions at the Al-Yarmouk arms factory in Khartoum, which Sudan and others attribute to an Israeli bombing raid, the issue remains largely unaddressed at the UN.

  On November 7 Inner City Press asked Security Council president Hardeep Singh Puri of India for the state of play, after being told by some Sudanese diplomats that a second, more detailed letter would be filed.

  Hardeep Singh Puri graciously checked into the matter, and then exclusively told Inner City Press "Yes there was a letter. Then the issue was raised by one member in the Council. We asked the Secretariat if any further information available. They said no, and that is where it is."

  Back on October 24, Inner City Press asked Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Martin Nesirky:

Inner City Press: there has been in Khartoum in Sudan, a large explosion in an arms depot or transit point, and the Government there is saying that Israel did it with airplanes, and I am wondering, since that would be cross-border, deep into Sudanese territory, the UN, are they aware of the explosion, have there been any consequences of it and who do they believe is behind it? What's their response to this?

Spokesperson Nesirky: Well, we are obviously aware of the media reports, but we don’t have anything further on that, Matthew. Okay, any other questions?

  The UN Secretariat has said nothing since -- and told the Security Council it has no further information. Does it WANT to get any further information?

  Within Sudan there are divisions on how close the government should be to Iran; the allegation is that the Yarmouk facility was involved in Iranian weapons passage to Hamas. Will one of the UN's imaginative sanctions group of experts, like those on DRC, Somalia or Cote d'Ivoire, dig into this one?

 Also on Sudan, Inner City Press on November 7 asked Nesirky for the UN's response to Sudan declaring over the tripartite agreement to get humanitarian aid into Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile. Nesirky said a request to extend the agreement has been made. We'll see -- watch this site.

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