UNAMID concerned over security deterioration in Darfur

09:40, February 17, 2011      

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The United Nations-African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) on Wednesday expressed concerns over what it termed as "deterioration" of security situation in Sudan's Darfur region, which has witnessed a civil war since 2003.

"Over recent months, particularly in November and December 2010, the security situation in some parts of Darfur has deteriorated. This was due largely to military clashes between Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Darfur armed movements," said UNAMID Chief Ibrahim Gambari at a press conference here.

"I am deeply concerned about these renewed clashes and have since made strong appeals to the parties to cease further hostilities and stressed that while armed confrontations may meet short term military objectives, they do not hold the solution to the achievement of durable and sustainable peace in Darfur," he added.

In the meantime, Gambari disclosed a new strategy for UNAMID to protect civilians and prevent violence against children in the region, saying that "the mission is committed to its mandate and to protection of civilians. We will work to ensure the implementation of a newly formulated protection of civilian strategy."

"The government of Sudan has shown a commendable willingness to cooperate with us in ensuring that we have the required access and freedom of movement," said Gambari.

He further urged the Darfur armed movements not to carry out any action that could cripple the mission's strategy aimed at protecting the civilians.

Gambari reiterated the mission has completed deployment of its civilian components and they were ready to protect the civilians and the mission personnel.

The armed clashes, which broke out during November and December 2010 between the Sudanese government forces and two Darfur rebel groups, the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) and the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) in north, south and west Darfur, have displaced thousands of civilians and deprived humanitarian workers of access to some affected areas.

Source: Xinhua

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