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  • Rebels reject Darfur deal, Sudan breaks apart

    Mediators have given warring parties in Sudan's Darfur region an extra 48 hours to reach a peace deal after two rebel groups said they would refuse to sign a proposed agreement in its current form.

    The last-minute extension by African Union mediators came after after an initial deadline to reach a deal expired at midnight, throwing into doubt two years of talks to end fighting which left tens of thousands dead.

    The decision to extend the deadline followed a request from the US, which said the extra time would allow for agreement on two critical security issues.

    The parties will be given more time to discuss the disarmament of the government-backed Janjaweed militia, who are accused of rape, murder and looting, and the integration of rebel forces into the army.

    "We are not going to accept this document for signature unless there are fundamental changes made to the document," Ahmed Tugod, the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) chief negotiator, said.

    The government of Sudan said earlier it was ready to sign the plan drafted by the AU mediators, but one of the factions of the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) said it would not sign the proposed agreement unless its demands were met in full.

    "If the proposal does not include all our demands we will not sign," Seif Haroun, spokesman for the SLA faction led by Minni Arcua Minnawi, told reporters.

    It was not immediately known what the position of the other SLA faction - a third rebel group involved in the fighting - was on the 85-page draft peace settlement......

    Rebels reject Darfur deal

  • #2
    that's a good news isn't it ?

    That would suffice I guess for Bush to send in 20-25 K troops hopefully immediately, and move those in Iraq thereafter. Khartoom regime needs help to return home --> Yemen - So that Black Hawk down II episode can start finally !

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    • #3
      Horror continues in Sudan's Darfur

      Comment


      • #4
        Abuja - The latest Darfur peace proposal meets key rebel demands and could open the way to a deal.

        On Thursday, a rebel negotiator said the deal called for thousands of rebels to be integrated into Sudanese security forces - a key rebel demand.

        The talks in the Nigerian capital are aimed at resolving a crisis in Darfur, Sudan, that has claimed at least 180 000 lives and forced more than two million people to flee their homes.

        The rebel negotiator said the latest draft called for a minimum of 4 000 rebels to be integrated into Sudan's armed forces and another 1 000 into the country's police force.

        Under the peace deal, 3 000 rebels would be given training and education to prepare for civilian life.

        The negotiator said the concessions from the Sudanese government - agreed to with American diplomats on Thursday - made agreement possible, although the rebels remained concerned about security arrangements.

        Rebels 'pleased' with new deal

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        • #5
          Who are these so called "Arab militias" anyway?

          Comment


          • #6
            The biggest of three rebel factions from Sudan's Darfur region accepted a peace deal with the government on Friday but two other factions rejected it, casting doubt on how workable the agreement would be.

            A faction of the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) led by Minni Arcua Minnawi said it would sign a peace settlement drafted by African Union (AU) mediators after two years of talks.

            "I accept the document with some reservations concerning the power sharing," Minnawi told Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick and a host of senior diplomats meeting at Obasanjo's Abuja compound.

            Earlier a rival faction of the SLA and the smaller Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) rejected the deal citing a wide range of objections......

            Biggest Darfur rebel faction agrees peace deal

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            • #7
              ABUJA, Nigeria - Two of three rebel groups battling the Sudanese government for control of the country's Darfur region resisted intense international pressure on Friday to sign an accord aimed at ending a conflict that has claimed at least 180,000 lives.

              In New York, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan urged all countries to press the warring parties to reach agreement but warned the international community has an obligation to protect civilians in Darfur, by force if need be.....

              Darfur region peace plan in jeopardy

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              • #8
                Western media and US Christian support for the Darfur rebels, guilty of their own atrocities, has held back a peace deal

                By the time you read this, there may be good news from Africa. A peace agreement could have been signed for Darfur, the place often compared with Rwanda as a cause for international shame because warnings of genocide went unheeded. If done by last night's midnight deadline, a deal will surprise most people, since with very few exceptions the world's press has ignored the negotiations that have been inching forward under African Union (AU) mediation in the Nigerian capital, Abuja.

                I call it the Darfur Disconnect. One TV reporter after another does the standard tour into Sudan's western region, guided by rebel groups. Out comes footage of miserable refugees huddling in tents or shelters of sticks and plastic and recounting stories of brutal treatment by government-backed Janjaweed militias. Commentators thunder away at the need for sanctions against the regime in Khartoum and denounce western leaders for not authorising Nato to intervene.

                Last weekend the outrage took a new turn, with big demonstrations in several American cities, strongly promoted by the Christian right, which sees the Darfur conflict as another case of Islamic fundamentalism on the rampage. They urged Bush to stop shilly-shallying and be tougher with the government of Sudan.

                The TV reports are not wrong. They just give a one-sided picture and miss the big story: the talks that the rebels are conducting with the government. The same is true of the commentaries. Why demand military involvement, when western leaders have intervened more productively by pressing both sides to reach a settlement? Over the past few days the US, with British help, has taken over the AU's mediation role, and done it well. Robert Zoellick, the state department's number two, and Hilary Benn, Britain's development secretary, have been in Abuja urging the rebels not to waste the opportunity for peace. Sudan's government accepted the US-brokered draft agreement last weekend, and it is the rebels who have been risking a collapse.

                It is hard to see why. The as yet unpublished text, which I read this week, gives the rebels most of what they went to war for. In many insurgencies, Northern Ireland for one, rebels are asked to come out of hiding and join the political process with or without an amnesty. In the Darfur peace agreement, large areas of territory are recognised by the government as being under the rebels' control and therefore closed to government troops during a transition period. This is a humiliating recognition of loss of sovereignty. The Janjaweed militias will have to be disarmed before the rebels are. Foreign peacekeepers from the AU will oversee security around the camps for internally displaced people, and government forces will be barred.

                Darfur's marginalisation (which was one of the issues that led to the conflict) will be addressed through extra funding from Sudan's national budget. Affirmative action will give Darfurians public-service jobs. The rebels will have the right to nominate the governor of one of Darfur's three states, and the deputy governors of the other two. The rebels will also have a top post in Sudan's presidential administration in Khartoum.

                Why were they reluctant to agree? One reason - rarely reported in the media rush to paint the rebels as heroes - is that they are seriously divided. Splits along ethnic lines have recently widened, even leading to armed clashes. There are reports that the rebels themselves have been using janjaweed-style violence, storming each other's villages on camels. The rebels are also guilty of blocking aid to the displaced. Jan Pronk, the UN special representative, this week charged them with jeopardising aid to 450,000 vulnerable people through attacks on UN agency vehicles and non-governmental relief agencies.

                One-sided international media treatment of the crisis may have emboldened the rebels to increase their demands......

                One-sided reporting that is delaying an end to the killing

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                • #9
                  ALGERIA on Saturday called on all factions in Sudan's Darfur region to make joint efforts to speed up the peace process, a communique released by the Algerian Foreign Ministry said.

                  The communique said the Algerian government welcomes the Friday peace deal between the Sudanese government and the Sudanese Liberation Movement (SLM), which is a major rebel faction in Darfur.

                  The Algerian government hoped other rebel factions to join the peace agreement as soon as possible, in a bid to bring years of bloodshed in Darfur to an end, said the communique.

                  The communique lauded the mediation of the African Union (AU), saying the peace accord between the two sides turned a new page in bringing stability and prosperity to Sudan as well as kindling other conflict-stricken African regions with hopes for solution.

                  The Sudanese government and the SLM signed the peace agreement Friday in Nigerian capital Abuja after two years of tough talks. The agreement calls for disbanding rebel forces and disarming the "Janjaweed" militia, which backs the government.

                  The rebel groups took up arms in Sudan's arid Darfur region in February 2003, accusing the government of negligence. Many people have been killed in the conflict and some 1 million displaced since then.

                  Source: Xinhua

                  Algeria: Government calls for speedy peace process in Sudan

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                  • #10
                    Victims of Arab militia now face new attackers:


                    Members of the Sudanese Liberation Army in Susuwa, north Darfur

                    In Darfur, rapes and shootings go on, despite peace agreement

                    Tribal turf war erupts as peace process stalls

                    With Darfur's remaining rebels still refusing to sign a peace deal, fighters that were united against the Sudanese government have turned on each other.

                    Around Tawilla thousands of civilians have been displaced since the beginning of the year following deadly violence between two ethnically-divided factions of the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA), Darfur's largest rebel movement.

                    In what has become a turf war for control of rebel-held territory, gunmen on pick-up trucks and horseback have been burning huts, killing, looting, and even raping women, in raids just as deadly as those of the Arab "Janjaweed" militia.

                    Villages that had been emptied due to raids by government forces are once again deserted. Camps for displaced people on the outskirts of town lie abandoned, their terrified former residents having barricaded themselves in makeshift shelters against the razor wire surrounding the African Union peacekeepers' base. All but one international NGO have left.

                    "Initially the trouble here was the government forces," said an AU military observer based in Tawilla, two hours' drive west of the state capital, El Fasher. "But now these different SLA groups fighting each other have become the problem......"

                    Darfur's rebel forces turn on each other

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                    • #11


                      UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan is sending retired diplomatic trouble-shooter Lakhdar Brahimi to Khartoum next week to press Sudan’s reluctant government to allow U.N. military planners into Darfur, U.N. officials said on Friday.

                      The move follows Tuesday’s adoption by the Security Council of a resolution giving the government a week to let in the U.N. planning team, so it can begin preparing for a U.N. peacekeeping force to take over in Darfur later this year from the African Union mission now there.

                      The resolution did not specify what action the council would take if the government failed to meet the deadline, but it was written under Chapter 7 of the U.N. Charter, making its demands binding under international law.

                      Annan decided to dispatch Brahimi, a former Algerian foreign minister who stepped down from active U.N. service last December, as his special envoy "as part of a continuing dialogue with the government of Sudan," U.N. chief spokesman Stephane Dujarric told Reuters.....

                      >>>More<<<

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                      • #12
                        So according to one of those articles it's all due to "unfair Western press bias" against the Sudanese government, eh?

                        Somehow that doesn't ring true as being the reason for this particular deal falling through.



                        V
                        Last edited by voltaire; 20th May 2006, 09:07.

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                        • #13
                          HAS the US stepped back on to the scene of one of its most memorable military disasters — and chosen to back the kind of warlords who humiliated it?

                          Is U.S. using enemy to fight a proxy war?

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                          • #14
                            Rebels say militias kill dozens despite Darfur peace:

                            KHARTOUM (Reuters) - Dozens were killed in a major attack by government-backed militias on Shearia town in Sudan's Darfur region, the latest in a wave of raids since a peace deal was signed earlier this month, rebels said on Saturday.

                            A spokesman for the main rebel faction group who signed the deal in the Nigerian capital Abuja on May 5 told Reuters from the field in Darfur that despite the agreement, heavy attacks have continued on the ground.

                            "The attack on Shearia was yesterday -- the Janjaweed have attacked many many places in South Darfur despite the peace deal," al-Tayyib Khamis said. Shearia is in South Darfur.

                            "There are about 20-25 dead and many injured but it's unclear as yet how many," he said.

                            The government and the Minni Arcua Minnawi faction group signed a peace deal on May 5 under intense global pressure. But two other factions at the talks did not sign saying it was not fair. Thousands of Darfuris have since been demonstrating angrily against the agreement.

                            Arab militias, known locally as Janjaweed, were not part of the peace talks in Abuja. The United Nations said as Khartoum armed them to fight the mostly non-Arab rebels, the government represented them.

                            Khartoum admits arming some tribes to fight the rebels but denies links to the Janjaweed, saying they are outlaws.

                            The African Union, with a 7,000-strong force monitoring a widely-ignored ceasefire in the region, was unable to immediately confirm the fighting in Shearia......

                            >>>More<<<

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                            • #15
                              UN relief official warns of collapse in Darfur:

                              UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The next few weeks are critical for millions of people in Darfur as foreign aid efforts face collapse, and malnutrition and mortality may increase, the chief U.N. relief official said on Friday.

                              Jan Egeland, the U.N. emergency relief coordinator, said attacks against aid workers had been relentless and access difficult. He said the under-equipped African Union force in Darfur needed immediate help and that international funding had to increase, especially from Gulf nations.

                              "The next few weeks will be make or break. We can turn the corner towards reconciliation and reconstruction, or see an even worse collapse of our efforts to provide protection and relief to millions of people," Egeland told the 15-nation U.N. Security Council of his recent trip to Sudan and Chad.

                              "The next few weeks will be absolutely critical for millions of people in this region," he said." Otherwise "malnutrition and mortality rates would multiply in some areas, within weeks, not months."

                              Egeland said help had to be given to the 7,300-strong African Union force, the only bulwark against atrocities in Darfur. Some troops had not been paid in two months, he added.

                              He said a U.N. force to augment the African troops was "absolutely necessary" and the only one which could help 2 to 3 million people return to their homes.

                              Sudan has not agreed to the deployment of a U.N. force and has not permitted the United Nations to send a military assessment mission to Darfur....

                              >>>More<<<

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