Churches are, as always, in the forefront of both advocacy and action
for peace, justice and human rights. The ECS Archbishop of Sudan has
set up a special task force to concentrate on the issue of South
Kordofan (no 1 below). The appeals by Catholic Bishop Macram Max are a
couple of weeks old now, but none the less poignant and compelling
(nos 2 and 3 below, also attached). Article no 6 below is also a few
weeks old, but still worth reading. In the meantime, Khartoum has once
again escalated the other civil war in Sudan by aerial bombing in
Darfur (no 5 below).
1. Public Lecture on Southern Kordofan, ECS All Saints Cathedral JUBA,
Saturday 30th July, 11am - 1pm
On behalf of the ECS Emergency Task Force on Southern Kordofan I
cordially invite you to a public lecture on the theme “Southern
Kordofan Unpacked.” This special lecture will feature a detailed
briefing facilitated by the ECS Task Force Chairman, Rt Rev. Paul
Yugusuk, on the situation in Southern Kordofan. Please see below for
details of the lecture. Should you have any questions before the
event, please do not hesitate to contact us on: ECStaskfo...@yahoo.com
We do hope to receive you there.
ECS Task Force
Venue: All Saints Cathedral, Juba
Light refreshments will be served.
Date: Saturday 3oth July 2011
All are welcome
Time: 11am – 1pm
International Coordinator in the Office of the Archbishop
Province of the Episcopal Church of the Sudan
Mob.: +249 (0) 917 259 770 (Zain) +249 (0) 955 429 437 (Vivacell)
2. A CRY FROM THE CATHOLIC BISHOP OF EL OBEID TO SAVE THE NUBA
ETHNICITY FROM EXTERMINATION
July 18, 2011
I am appealing to you to join me and save an entire ethnic group from
being either wiped out from the map or be assimilated by the Islamic
Government of Khartoum which in both cases is an ethnic cleansing.
The Nuba population has an identity which distinguishes them
completely from North Sudan. Their very features indicate that they
are unmistakably African with rich customs, traditions and languages.
They are closer to the South than to the North in their social
structure and behavior. This is demonstrated in the ecumenical way of
living whether in the family structure or in social life. They
genuinely respect unity in diversity both religiously and tribally.
They have a deep conviction of their identity and uniqueness and
identify themselves as: PEOPLE FROM THE MOUNTAINS or simply NUBA.
The above-mentioned realities make them convinced that they are not
Arabs and that the Nuba who are Muslim will never be treated as
genuine Muslims by the Muslim North as equals due to traditions and
customs which render them automatically as second class Muslim.
The Nuba are deeply aware that their future and that of their children
is to join the Liberation Movement. The name SPLA North is a
misleading name. During the entire years of struggle to determine
their God-given right through self determination there was no
distinction between North, South or East Liberation Movement. All were
termed as Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement/Army.
The Comprehensive Peace Agreement signed in Nairobi in the year 2005
brought a certain period of cessation to violence, aerial bombardment,
assassination of leaders and educated Nuba, the abduction of boys and
girls and their enslavement, the rape of young women and girls, the
use of food to force the process of Islamization and Arabization and
the persecution of the Christians and those of traditional belief.
People were hopeful that the Nuba Mountains will have their regional
autonomy and not to assign a Governor for the Nuba who is wanted by
the International Criminal Court (ICC) for evils and crimes he
committed against humanity when he was in Darfur. The Nuba have the
right to govern themselves.
It is a crime to use the media and proclaim that the Government of
Khartoum intends to win if not through the ballot box it would be
through the bullet box? This was a blatant violation of the rights of
the Nuba. This is an intimidation and indirectly a declaration of war.
It was decided to have popular consultation. To disarm the SPLA Joint
Integrated Units (JIU) was supposed to take place in 9 April 2012 as
the Security Protocol. They did not honor this agreement. They did not
abide by this agreement.
During the last year of the six years of the CPA, the central
Government of Khartoum repositioned its troops in the areas which had
evacuated. It transported heavy armaments and assigned armed militias
in certain strategic areas.
The elections were tempered with and Khartoum won through vague and
unethical tactics. This was contested by the leadership of the SPLA.
Before the independence of the South, Khartoum pretended that the SPLA
should hand over their weapons and their troops should be absorbed by
Khartoum’s army. This was totally rejected by the SPLA. This rejection
justified Khartoum to initiate the present inhumane oppression. High
altitude aerial bombardment became the order of the day. Russian made
Antonov bombers re-appeared and jet fighters drop huge bombs
indiscriminately on civilians. The victims as is evident are women,
elderly and children. It breaks ones heart at seeing the innocent
killed and/or maimed.
The forces of Khartoum are using the militia forces to conduct
assassination of people and extra-judicial killing is widely
conducted. Moreover, Khartoum sealed all routes of communication to
supply life-saving medicines and food. Khartoum resorts to their old
ways of starving the people to hinder desperately needed assistance
given by NGOs and faith-based charitable organizations.
Recently I was told that the SPLA succeeded to capture three chemical
bombs. The news of chemical bombs that are piled up to be used against
the Nuba has been circulating since the month of June. There is no
smoke without fire and there is a great possibility of the veracity of
It is not the geographical location that is at stake. It is the
presence of an ethnicity that is at stake. Forcing people to belong to
an area which is totally alien to their ethnic group will not last for
long. The Nuba people have the non-negotiable right to
self-determination. I call upon all peoples of Good Will to join me
and condemn the use of violence and the mutilation and killing of the
I warn the international community that the war against the Nuba has
arrived to the dimension of ethnic cleansing.
I call on the international mass media to bring to the forefront the
massacre of the Nuba and their annihilation.
I call for the implementation of a no-fly zone over the Nuba region.
I call for the immediate opening of the borders to allow the delivery
of all emergency supplies and food items.
I call upon the warring parties to discuss just and peaceful solutions
in a civil way. The barrel of the gun will never bring peace; on the
contrary, it will create more hatred and violence.
I ask Gesellschaft fuer bedrohte Voelker [German NGO to which this
appeal was originally addressed] to ask the members of the Bundestag
and Chancellor Angela Merkel to take action against these brutal
killings of civilians and the elimination of an entire ethnic
population in the Nuba Mountains region.
Thank you for your assistance, concern and support. God bless you and all.
+ Bishop Macram Max Gassis
Catholic Bishop Of El Obeid Diocese (Kordofan, Darfur & Abyei)
3. We are the custodians of our brothers and Sisters
A Bishop is a shepherd, and as such I feel that I am responsible to
protect my flock and defend their rights. In this case, I appeal to
you to stand by me and save the Nuba population from the present
tragedy which is gaining momentum day by day. The International
Community should not close its eyes and repeat the words of Cain after
having killed his brother Abel: “Am I the custodian of my brother?”.
The more the International community shies away from tackling the
issue of the Nuba, the more the situation will become a tragedy and
many are already terming it ethnic cleansing.
Khartoum is amassing a huge number of troops around South Kordofan
after having lost the entire South Sudan and its oil wealth. Khartoum
definitely does not want to lose the Nuba Mountains as well as Abyei
and Darfur. It is not the love and the goodness of the President of
Sudan that generously accepted the Independence of South Sudan. In my
view, he had no alternative under the CPA. He is playing well his
chess game. He shares whatever is to be shared from the oil revenue
with the Republic of South Sudan but he is banking on the future
wealth in the Nuba Mountains, Abyei and Darfur.
Presently, The Regime in Khartoum has amassed more than forty to fifty
thousand troops in South Kordofan to subjugate the Nuba by force.
These troops are using brutal torture, rape, extra-judicial killing
and aerial bombardment of innocent villagers. They have renewed
planting of land mines. They have declared Jihad against the Nuba
population and have closed all roads of food supply. Starving people
in order to subjugate them is immoral and inhuman. Brutal torture,
rape, extra-judicial killing, and aerial bombardment of the villagers
I warn the International Community that once the Nuba people have
finished the little stored food, they will face and experience a
tragic famine just as the one being witnessed today in Somalia and in
Northern Kenya. The nightmare of the upcoming famine will be caused
by the present poor rainy season in the Nuba Mountains, the fear of
cultivating due to insecurity caused by the aerial bombardment and by
attacks of Khartoum’s soldiers. I am not a prophet but I see facts
as a person who has lived such experience prior to the ceasefire for
the Nuba Mountains which was signed in Buergenstock - Switzerland in
the year 2000. I simply cannot understand or accept that people be
robbed of their dignity which is expressed in their God-given human
The Church has the obligation to denounce and condemn the
extermination of entire ethnic groups. The Church also invites all
people of good-will to stand up and defend the dignity of peoples.
The International Community should not condone or keep silent in the
face of such crimes. Silence is a tacit approval of evil. The
aerial bombardment is perpetrated on the unarmed and innocent
civilians. Above all, the vulnerable groups: the children, the women
and the elderly. I am attaching some photos to show that the victims
of the aerial bombardment are children, women and elderly. Some of the
photos might be too brutal to be viewed by some people. The suffering
of children who are God’s greatest gift to humanity reminds us of
Rachel’s mourning: “Thus says the Lord: In Ramah is heard the sound of
moaning, of bitter weeping! Rachel mourns her children, she refuses to
be consoled because her children are no more”. (Jeremiah 31:15).
For your information, I came to understand from the official spokesman
of the SPLA in the Nuba Mountains that the government of Khartoum has
already started bringing Janjaweed from Chad and Niger. Some of
these Janjaweed have already arrived. Mercenaries belonging to
Al-Shabaab movement in Somalia are being recruited to go and fight
besides Khartoum troops in the Nuba Mountains. Their presence has
been confirmed in Kassala on the border with Eritrea. They are
preparing for their departure to El Obeid. Recently, Ahmed Haroun who
was elected as governor of Southern Kordofan in a disputed election
requested that the SPLA should return all the military vehicles, arms
and ammunition or else he will order the use of chemical weapons at
his disposal (It is worth noting that Ahmed Haroun is wanted by the
ICC tribunal in the Hague for his crimes against humanity in Darfur).
On July 18, the antenov bomber bombed the health center in Ladu. On
the same day, they dropped bombs on Kerkeraya killing two young boys
aged thirteen and fifteen.
To date Kadugli which is the capital of South Kordofan is divided
between the SPLA and the troops of Khartoum. I am quite sure that the
forces of Khartoum, being unable to subdue the Nuba, will use two
lethal weapons: either starvation of the Nuba or the use of chemical
weapons which are in their possession.
The regime in Khartoum even armed the Nuer rebel named Peter Gadet and
asked to attack the Nuba forces. The Nuer is a tribe of South Sudan.
It is to be remembered that Peter Gadet refused to join the rest of
the SPLA in the South and refused to accept the declaration of
Independence for South Sudan. The troops of Peter Gadet were dispersed
and their commander Thomas Biel with eleven of his soldiers lost their
I hope the International Community will move fast to save the Nuba
from eminent destruction. There is no possible material time to waste
on discussion, procrastination and deliberation. While all this is
being done, my people are suffering and dying. A drowning person
needs to be saved immediately otherwise he or she perishes.
I launch my appeal in the hope quick action is taken to save our
brothers and sisters in humanity and I hope also not to hear the words
of Cain being repeated to me: “Am I the custodian of my brother?”.
God bless you.
+Macram Max Gassis
Catholic Bishop of El Obeid Diocese (Nuba Mountains, Abyei and Darfur)
4. Iran’s Revolutionary Guards arrive to fight alongside Sudan army in
border state, SPLM says
July 28, 2011 (KHARTOUM) – Members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards
(IRG) and Somali militants have arrived in eastern Sudan in order to
participate besides the government’s army in the ongoing armed
conflict in South Kordofan State, alleged the Sudan People’s
Liberation Movement (SPLM).
The SPLM in South Kordofan, which has been fighting the Sudan Armed
Forces (SAF) in the oil-producing state since 5 June, said in a press
release on Wednesday that its sources had observed the arrival of 200
IRG members accompanied by 10 advanced tanks at Kassala airport in
At the same airport, the SPLM further alleged, some Somali Islamist
militants arrived two weeks ago and were later spotted heading to
Sudan and Iran have close military cooperation agreements in different
fields. Iranian experts also, participated in the training of the army
members in the past during the war against the SPLA in South Sudan.
However independent sources contacted by Sudan Tribune failed to
confirm the SPLM’s allegations on the participation of Iranian troops
in the armed conflict in South Kordofan.
The SPLM, which claimed its forces had inflicted great losses on SAF
and that some of army members had defected to its forces, accused the
government of the ruling National Congress Party of using these
militias in its “ethnic cleansing” in South Kordofan.
The SPLM further echoed calls on the UN Security Council to establish
a committee to investigate reports of atrocities allegedly committed
by SAF and its allied militias.
SAF, which is encountering difficulties in quelling what Khartoum
terms as “an all-out rebellion” in South Kordofan, has recently come
under attack and allegations of committing wide-ranging abuses during
A report prepared by the UN Mission in Sudan on the situation in South
Kordofan charged SAF with committing “especially egregious” acts that
may amount to “war crimes and crimes against humanity.”
The Northern Sector of the SPLM split away from the SPLM in South
Sudan, which is the ruling party of the newly independent state. After
Southern secession areas like the Nuba Mountains in South Kordofan and
in Blue Nile remain in North Sudan despite fighting with the SPLM for
much of Sudan’s second North-South civil war (1983-2005).
A peace deal in 2005 allowed South Sudan to secede through a
referendum earlier this year. South Sudan became an independent
republic on July 9. Speaking at the ceremony South Sudan President and
SPLM chairman said he had not forgotten the people of South Kordofan,
Blue Nile, Darfur and the contested region of Abyei.
5. UNAMID peacekeepers confirm air attacks in Darfur
July 28, 2011 (KHARTOUM) — Darfur’s joint African Union and United
Nations peacekeeping mission have confirmed reports of air strikes
carried out by the Sudanese army in the restive region during this
Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and rebel groups spoke about air
attacks by the Sudanese army in the South Darfur region but have no
clear details about the area effected by the bombing or the
In a short statement released on Wednesday the African Union-United
Nations peacekeeping operation (UNAMID) confirmed the recent air
strikes in near the area of Abu Hamara, 20km west of Khor Abeche in
The hybrid mission further reported the death of one person and two
wounded and mentioned that civilians fled a number of villages in the
Asked about the air attacks, Hussein Abu Sharati, spokesperson of
Darfur IDPs said they had received reports about air strikes in areas
located east of Nyala, capital of South Darfur on 9 July.
He added that the civilians moved from the area to IDPs camps as the
bombing destroyed their homes and killed their livestock.
Abu Sharati spoke about the poor situation of the camps stressing the
residents suffer generally from the lack of medications and potable
water. He urged to redouble efforts in this respect and to send more
shelter materials for the new residents in the different camps.
The Justice and Equality Movement also, condemned the attacks and said
these attacks come as direct results to the signing of a peace
agreement between the government and the Liberation and Justice
Movement (LJM) in Doha on 14 July.
"We know well that the Doha agreement will not bring peace in Darfur,"
said Gibreel Adam Bilal underlining it will give the army a pretext to
resume attacks on rebel positions.
He also urged aid groups to provide the newly displaced villagers with
food and shelters.
6. Is there a political solution to halt genocide in the Nuba Mountains, Sudan?
Posted on June 26, 2011 by Admin
Guest post by Tim Flatman, who has recently returned from South Sudan.
Is genocide always an irrational action carried out by a despot who
has lost his grasp on reality, or can it be a pragmatic policy exacted
to meet the self-interest of a ruling elite? Can it co-exist with
rebellion or must the targets of genocide have one, unconfused, victim
identity? Can the perpetrators of genocide be negotiated with, how do
we know when they are negotiating seriously and what kinds of pressure
might they respond to?
The Government of Sudan stands accused of attempting two simultaneous
genocides in the last month – a record even for the likes of Bashir,
Nafie and Harun. In Abyei it displaced 150,000 Dinka Ngok people from
their homeland and left them for dead without shelter, food or clean
water, subject to continued intimidation and threats. The invasion of
Abyei united a complex, overlapping set of interests within the
National Congress Party headed by Omar Al-Bashir, which I have
explored elsewhere. But one of the hopes of the regime was undoubtedly
that the residents of Abyei would either die or be forced to flee far
enough South that they lost their claim to the land and the right of
self-determination they had been promised. The Government of Sudan
tried, but largely failed, to repopulate the area. Most civilians from
Northern tribes refused to repopulate Abyei town, recognizing the
NCP’s attempt to use them as pawns and locate them in a potential
war-zone and refusing to change the pattern of annual migrations and
put their cattle at risk to satisfy the NCP.
Recognising the nature of this deadly game of chess, the Dinka Ngok
residents of Abyei stood firm, with the eventual assistance of the
international community to provide food, some temporary shelters and
medicine. Tens of thousands of those who initially fled further than
Agok (a village on the edge of Abyei area, below the river Kiir which
tanks did not cross) returned there despite circling Antonovs and
occasional attacks by Sudan Armed Forces. It became clear that the
policy of genocide would not succeed, and that continued occupation
would have knock-on consequences for the regime. This week, the NCP
signed a deal promising to withdraw troops, (replaced by neutral
Ethiopian peacekeepers), and allow residents to return. Residents are
skeptical over whether it will be properly implemented, whether
Ethiopian peacekeepers have the capacity to prevent future incursions
by Northern militias, and the deal is a temporary interim agreement
which does not resolve the fundamental question of the status of
Abyei. Without giving the permanent residents of Abyei the
self-determination they have been promised, the question is not if
these events will be repeated but when. Nonetheless, the deal, if
implemented properly, is to be welcomed – so long as the world doesn’t
assume it has fixed the situation and take its eyes off Abyei.
The genocide in the Nuba Mountains is if anything more difficult to
halt. The Nuba people are a larger group and have better networks with
the outside world than the Dinka Ngok, both through the Church (even
though a smaller proportion of the Nuba are Christian than the Dinka
Ngok) and through diaspora networks. There is also better
infrastructure in the area for reporting attacks. As a consequence,
reports of the nature of the violence have reached the outside world
more quickly and in a more comprehensive manner. We have heard about
door-to-door executions of anyone considered ethnically Nuba,
Christian, or sympathetic to the SPLM in the recent elections. Tens of
thousands of people have fled towards villages as they are being
bombed, on the assumption they are safer than the areas Sudan Armed
Forces are in control of. The Government of Sudan has both threatened
and attacked the UN, parts of whom have been accused of aiding and
abetting the genocide, and even of raping Nuba women themselves. We
have heard about thousands of bodies being pushed into mass graves,
about torture and rape used as political weapons, about instruction
given to local militia members to treat Nuba like “rubbish” and “sweep
them away”. The President of Sudan boasts that “if anyone looks our
way, we will stab his eyes” and amasses forces with presumed similar
intent in the neighbouring Blue Nile region.
Like in Abyei, there are a complex set of overlapping interests united
by the implementation of a policy of genocide, which occasion these
attacks. But although many of these interests are rooted in similar
contexts, the immediate causes are very different. In the Nuba
Mountains, the immediate cause is the SAF attempt to implement a
military solution to the problem of how to treat former rebel fighters
in the Joint Integrated Units. The JIUs united former rebels and Sudan
Army units under joint command, but after South Sudan secedes they are
supposed to be dissolved. The Government of Sudan pre-empted this
dissolution by demanding former rebels in JIUs in the Nuba Mountains
lay down their arms or go to the South. The trouble was these fighters
were indigenous to the Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile regions in the
North, fighting alongside the South during the war not as part of it.
The Government of Sudan refused to discuss a political solution and
instead tried to resolve the situation by killing the former rebels
until they laid down their arms. In doing so, they provoked a
rebellion and used genocide as a counter-revolutionary tactic to put
down the rebellion and weaken political opposition in an area which
could become the political centre of opposition to the government in
Sudan once the South secedes.
The Government of Sudan accuses leaders of the SPLM Northern Sector
(now severed from the SPLM in South Sudan and operating as an
independent party in the North) of treason, says there are abuses on
either side and that violence should be classified as fighting rather
than genocide. But unless we assume the perpetrators of genocide are
evil and irrational, and the victims are helpless and passive, there
is no reason why genocide and rebellion cannot co-exist. Yet the
rebellion is not strong enough to win outright victory, and with an
estimated 75,000 former rebels in South Kordofan (which includes the
Nuba Mountains) and Blue Nile states, the attempt to wipe out the
former rebels and the accompanying genocide could continue
A political solution is needed, but as things stand genocide is a more
pragmatic option for the NCP regime than negotiation. We have seen in
the past that the NCP pursues genocide when it is the most pragmatic
policy to secure its interests, but negotiates seriously when the
facts on the ground change. However, negotiation is not in itself a
sign of serious intent to change its policy, since the NCP has also
used negotiations (for example, in the case of the Darfur Peace
Agreement, or the political charter between the Sudan Government and
SPLA United) to weaken and divide rebel movements and further the
chances of a total military victory. Only when rebel movements are
united, backed by international pressure and it is clear that a
military victory is impossible are they ready to concede anything in
the name of ensuring continued NCP political control, and maintaining
the territorial integrity and economic viability of northern Sudan.
Some are beginning to recognize this and call for a “rebalancing” to
force the Government of Sudan to come to the negotiating table in
earnest. Roger Winter, the former US Special Envoy to Sudan, called on
the US to “Take a military action against a Khartoum military target
now” to “strengthen the SPLA in meaningful ways as a deterrent against
Khartoum aggression, provocation and attacks against civilians”.
Backing unilateral US military intervention is not likely to be a
popular option on the British political left, even if it might have
the welcome outcome Winter hopes for. It also seems unlikely the US
would take this action. The situation for civilians is far more
serious in the Nuba Mountains than in Libya, but US interests are not
threatened in the same way. There would of course be adverse outcomes
to unilateral direct military intervention by the US too, including
allowing the NCP to paint opposition within Sudan as driven and
manipulated by the United States and hence weakening opposition in
Khartoum and other regions in the North. Winter might argue that
trade-off is worth it if it stops genocide and forces the NCP to
The Enough project has made a call for the US to provide air defence
capabilities to the Government of South Sudan to “deter further
attacks and defend civilians”. Use of these capabilities would be
conditional on monitoring and continued improvement to improve the
human rights record of the SPLA as it moves from a guerilla army into
a conventional army. This would allow the South to shoot down SAF
planes operating in its territory, preventing attacks like the recent
bombing in Unity state, and most likely strengthening its hand in
ensuring the recent agreement on Abyei is actually implemented.
However, it would do little to stop the genocide in the Nuba Mountains
right now. The South could hardly shoot down planes in the North, and
no-one thinks these capabilities would be provided before July 9th,
anyhow. Of course, there are also concerns that the US would use its
leverage for the higher priority of land grabs and oil rights rather
than improving the human rights record of the SPLA. Nonetheless, this
proposal is worthy of support – South Sudan needs these capabilities
to defend citizens and stop the NCP terrorizing them to barter
concessions on resource-sharing and it is better they get high-quality
systems capable of distinguishing between civilian and military planes
than a cheap system through nefarious channels – just on the condition
that everyone understands it is not a solution to the crisis in South
Kordofan in itself. Although some Sudanese diaspora hope the SPLA
could smuggle some of this equipment to the Nuba Mountains, this seems
unrealistic especially with the kind of monitoring Enough advocate.
(To be fair, Enough evidently do understand this.)
Where does this leave us? Is there any kind of action that is
acceptable and likely to be effective in forcing the NCP to
re-evaluate? The Nuba people themselves, and Sudanese diaspora from
both the Nuba Mountains and other regions of Sudan, advocate a No-Fly
Zone. INGOs would likely be resolutely against this, as it would
sabotage their negotiations to establish humanitarian supply lines in
the affected areas. (We should, however, question whether their
interests are the same as the people they are helping when the people
they are helping don’t share their opinion, and argue that the
Government of Sudan does not negotiate seriously and will block these
supply lines whenever it feels like it, just as it closed the border
between the North and South during the Abyei crisis in an attempt to
starve the displaced.) A No-Fly Zone would allow rebels to secure
their control over villages they formerly controlled during the war
and are largely in control of now, providing safe havens for those who
wanted to flee without the additional risk of bombing. This in itself
would force the NCP to row back on its insistence on wiping out the
rebels and force it to reconsider some kind of continuation of Joint
Integrated Units under another name, or face a semi-permanent loss of
control of areas of its territory. But the sticking point is the UNSC
is unlikely to approve it. China is already demanding a lot of Bashir
in order to ensure relative peace between North and South and the
necessary stability to extract oil and other resources. It is likely
they would see this as a step too far.
Nonetheless, the placards displayed by Nuba exiles at the recent
demonstrations they called in London are powerful. There is no
perfect solution, but could some form of unilateral weapons support be
offered to rebels in the Nuba mountains? They are, after all,
experienced rebels with a human rights record far superior to parts of
the SPLA in the South. So too, they are under a political leadership
which has wider support within the area and the wider North than just
the SPLA. The Sudan Communist Party and even some of the traditional
Islamic parties tacitly supported Abdul Aziz’s election campaign
earlier this year. The SPLA in South Kordofan is run by secularists
who hold firm to the original vision of the SPLM manifesto, quietly
supported the unity of Sudan rather than separation and whose vision
and clarity is widely respected. Is there a way of directing, even if
through back channels, unilateral support for rebels to shoot down
military planes themselves, provide safe havens for civilians to avoid
slaughter, strengthen their bargaining position and force the NCP to
negotiate in earnest? Let’s at least have a debate about this – the
victims of genocide in South Kordofan and those courageously standing
up to the Government of Sudan deserve that at the very least, and they
deserve alternative solutions from those who reject this out of hand.
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