The Darfur Consortium

. . .

Darfur in the News

Arab media

February 19 , 2008

Source: Al Ahram (government-friendly, Egyptian daily with over 1 million in circulation)
Headline: Bush Calls for International Pressure on Sudan to End Darfur Violence

  • President Bush expressed disappointment because of lack of progress in Darfur and urged the international community to increase efforts to end violence in the war-torn region
  • The president made this statement ahead of a six-day African tour that will take him to Benin, Tanzania, Ghana, Liberia, and Rwanda
  • He promised added pressure on Sudan in the form of sanctions against the government officials and rebel leaders responsible for violence in the region
  • Meanwhile, Sudan’s minister of foreign affairs just finished a visit to Washington that is still shrouded in secrecy

Source: Al Riyadh (Government-friendly Saudi daily with wide circulation)
Headline: Red Cross Assists 10,000 New Darfur Refugees in Chad

  • International Committee of the Red Cross started assisting about 10,000 refugees who fled Darfur to Chad to escape recent violence between government and rebel forces in West Darfur
  • The organization provided the refugees with hygiene products, water, covers, and sleeping mats
  • Injured refugees were taken to nearby medical centers for treatment

Source: Al Jazeera (Leading Arabic News Channel, headquartered in Qatar)
Headline: UN Warns against Increased Armed Attacks on Refugees in Chad

  • UN Refugee Agency indicated that its employees in eastern Chad were prevented by armed militia from transporting new wave of Darfur refugees from inside Chad away from the border region for safety
  • The agency described the situation as dangerous and tense especially that these armed groups are not known
  • Chadian government threatened last week to expel the new refugees, charging their presence destabilize the country
  • The agency expressed the need to have EUFOR force deployed in eastern Chad as soon as possible to provide protection to these refugees
  • Meanwhile, Chadian rebels warned European Union not to send forces to Chad and accused France of supporting Deby’s regime

Source: Asharq Al Awsat (Saudi-owned Pan-Arab daily with wide circulation)
Headline: 6000 Sudanese in Israel Ask for Political Asylum

  • Sudanese refugees - mostly from Darfur - in Israel reached 6000.  They are housed in the desert in south Israel
  • Most of them asked for political asylum because they fear for their lives if they were to returned to their homes in Sudan
  • Israeli public blasted its government for its inability to prevent illegal immigration into Israel via the porous Sinai borders, but humanitarian activists were opposed to returning the refugees to Sinai

Source: Al Khaleej (UAE daily, with over 80,000 in circulation)
Headline: Hybrid Force Leader Calls for Additional Troops in Darfur

  • High-ranking Hybrid Force official called for additional troops to be deployed in war-torn Darfur region even without sufficient weapons
  • The official worried that Darfur civilians would lose faith in the force if not deployed in large numbers and provided much needed protection
  • He feared civilians would have to wait a long time if additional troops were not sent till they were properly equipped in accordance with UN Standards

Source: Al Ahram (government-friendly, Egyptian daily with over 1 million in circulation)
Headline: Sudan Blames Bush’s Statements for Additional Complications in Darfur Crisis
By: Abdul Wahid Libini

  • Sudan harshly criticized President Bush’s recent statements, in which he decried Darfur situation and called for increased pressure on Sudan and promised to continue to enforce economic sanctions against the regime
  • Sudan’s high-ranking official Assammani Al Wasila replied that President Bush’s statement “complicated rather than improved the situation in Darfur and were negative signals that did not encourage talks between the two countries”
  • Al Wasila also criticized President Bush’s reference to genocide and indicated that US was the only country using this term

Source: Asharq Al Awsat (Saudi-owned Pan-Arab daily with wide circulation)
Headline: Sarkozy to Visit Chad and Chadian Rebels Expected to Attack Again
By: Mustapha Sirri and Abdullah Mustapha

  • French President Sarkozy expected in Chad next week to discuss strengthening military cooperation between the two countries according to Chadian official Jibril Mohamed Adam
  • Adam also denied accusations that French troops took part in fighting Chadian rebels during their last attack on N’Djamena
  • But he indicated that “the two countries have a military agreement that dates back to the 1970s that allows France to provide logistical and intelligence assistance to Chad”
  • Adam acknowledged Egyptian and Eritrean unofficial efforts to mend broken ties between Chad and Sudan, but Chad continued to accuse Sudan of supporting and arming Chadian rebels
  • Meanwhile, Chadian rebels worked on increasing their cooperation and selecting a unified leadership


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