The Darfur Consortium

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Darfur in the News

U.S. and European Media

November 8, 2022

Reuters: U.N. warns of Darfur force delay. U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called on Sudan on Wednesday to quickly approve the makeup of a U.N.-African Union peacekeeping force in Darfur, but Khartoum faulted donor states for delaying its deployment. Ban warned that preparations for the joint UNAMID peacekeeping force to take over from a hard-pressed AU force at the end of this year were being hampered by poor security and because Sudan has yet to approve the composition of the force. "I am concerned that the security incidents over the past month and the continuing delays in the deployment of UNAMID could lead to a further deterioration in the situation on the ground," he said. Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, who has been accused by the United States and other Western countries of foot-dragging on the peacekeepers, said he was ready for the force to be deployed, but funding was an obstacle. A U.N. official said the world body had mechanisms in place to spend money before a budget is officially approved and it was already doing so to support the AU force. "What's at issue are the operational challenges of moving into an area as inhospitable as Darfur," the official said.

Reuters: U.N. Staff Expulsion to Hinder Aid to 1 Million. The expulsion of the top U.N. humanitarian official from South Darfur will hinder efforts to provide aid to some 1 million aid-dependent Darfuris by removing a key member of the aid team, officials said on Thursday. Wael al-Haj Ibrahim was the 11th aid worker expelled from Sudan this year and the second Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) staff member expelled from South Darfur state in six months. Al-Haj Ibrahim headed the OCHA office in the town of Nyala. "OCHA plays a very important role in South Darfur assisting the government, NGOs, U.N. agencies and donors to coordinate assistance for up to 1 million displaced," said OCHA spokeswoman Orla Clinton. "It is very important to ensure a consistent and timely response. We cannot afford to have gaps at this critical time," she said adding, "We fully support our head of OCHA." Al-Haj Ibrahim was given 48 hours to leave the state and rebased to Khartoum on Wednesday afternoon.  A source in the aid community in Khartoum said al-Haj Ibrahim's departure was a major blow for the South Darfur operation as many young and inexperienced aid workers relied on his guidance in dangerous working conditions.

Agence France-Presse: UN members urged to provide helicopters for Darfur mission. UN chief Ban Ki-moon made a fresh appeal Wednesday for member states to provide transport and tactical helicopters vital for the success of the planned UN-African Union peacekeeping mission in Darfur. "It is urgent, at this time, that those member states who are in a position to contribute the missing transportation and aviation capabilities for UNAMID (the joint UN-AU force) to do so," Ban said. "Without these critical units, the mission will not be able to implement its mandate," he added, warning that recent security incidents in Sudan's war-ravaged western region and continuing delays in deploying the 26,000-strong UNAMID "could lead to a further deterioration in the situation on the ground." UNAMID still lacks 24 transport and tactical helicopters that are meant to give the force sufficient mobility and firepower. Diplomats said several Western countries in a position to provide the helicopters were reluctant to do so because of a lack of confidence in the effectiveness of the joint force. Top UN peacekeeping planners held talks with US officials in Washington earlier this week to urge them to help convince other countries to provide the helicopters. In his report, Ban also again urged Khartoum to cooperate "with regard to facilitating the acquisition of land, flight operations for UN aircraft and agreement on the composition of UNAMID.


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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