The Darfur Consortium

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Darfur in the News

U.S. and European Media

August 23, 2023

Agence France Presse: Darfur peace talks may open in October: AU. Talks between the Sudanese government and rebel factions to try to end the four-year conflict in Darfur could start in October, the African Union's special envoy for Sudan said on Wednesday. "We are working on the basis that the talks will take place in early October," Salim Ahmed Salim told reporters after a meeting with Sudanese Foreign Minister Lam Akol. He said the exact date would be set by UN chief Ban Ki-moon, who is due to visit Sudan next month, and the head of the African Union Commission Alpha Omar Konare. Representatives of Darfur's many rebel groups gathered earlier this month in the Tanzanian town of Arusha for UN- and AU-sponsored talks aimed at unifying their stance ahead of final peace negotiations with Khartoum. However, a leading rebel faction said earlier Wednesday it was reassessing its commitment to the latest peace initiative because of recent raids by Sudanese government forces. "Our commitment in Arusha was that we endorsed the AU-UN roadmap to jumpstart the political process. Given what the government of Sudan is doing on the ground, we are re-assessing it," said Nouri Abdalla, a spokesman for the Sudan Liberation Movement. "If the government of Sudan does not stop its policy of terrorising civilians, there can be no political process," he added.

Philadelphia City Paper: Devil Advocates. To Annie Sundberg, a documentary is no different than a feature film. It needs a plot, a character arc, a series of twists and revelations. And it needs a hero, a central figure through whose eyes the audience can forge a connection with a complex and sometimes confounding subject. Sundberg could hardly ask for a better hero than Brian Steidle, the former U.S. Marine whose chilling photographs brought the horrors of the genocide in Sudan's Darfur region to the American public. A middle-class kid from a military family, Steidle was hardly a born activist. The Devil Came on Horseback, which Sundberg co-directed with Ricki Stern, uses Steidle as a stand-in for Americans who have heard about the crisis in Darfur but have yet to take action. "Brian is perfect for an American audience as a way into an African affairs story," she says, perched on a seat in a Sundance hotel. "He's this everyday guy who happened to go over for a paycheck." "I had never seen things like that before," he recalls. "A government bombing their own villages, burning and raping and killing. I had no idea I was going to be photographing dead bodies every day." Even then, Steidle didn't think much about his photographs. He assumed he was one of many documenting the escalating crisis, and that he would return home to an outraged country. Instead, he found silence. "I figured that somebody must have shared the information," he remembers. "But nobody was getting the news. No photographs had traveled out. There was absolutely nothing."

Associated Press: Chad Agrees to Oil Revenue Transparency. The government of Chad said Thursday it will adhere to a program designed to put pressure on countries to be open about revenues from exports of oil, natural gas and minerals. Launched in 2002 by Britain's then-Prime Minister Tony Blair, the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative is meant to allow ordinary citizens to hold their leaders to account. ''The principles of this initiative will from now on be applied by Chad and the revenues ... will be declared in total transparency,'' Prime Minister Nouradine Delwa Kassire Coumakoye said in a statement. An impoverished central African nation, Chad is one of the continent's newest oil producers. It shares a border with the violence-wracked Darfur region of Sudan, whose conflict has spilled over into Chadian territory. Competition for power in Chad has intensified since it began exporting oil three years ago through a World Bank funded pipeline. Rebels last year attacked, but failed to take, the capital.


The Darfur Daily News is a service of the Save Darfur Coalition.  To subscribe to the Daily News, please email [email protected]. For media inquiries, please contact Ashley Roberts at (202) 478-6181, or [email protected].

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