20 May 2012

Sudan: UNAMID 'Situation in Darfur Relatively Calm'

El Fasher — A spokesperson for the UN/African Union Misson in Darfur has described the security situation in Darfur as 'relatively calm'.

Christopher Cycmanick told Radio Dabanga that there are still things that happen from time to time such as the Sudanese air force bombing areas such as Gereida, before moving in to fight armed movements.

He said that the mission received a number of reports about the fatalities and wounded, in addition to the arrests of a number of citizens including displaced people, but said it is difficult to cover these events in such a large area.

Speaking about the complaints of citizens with respect to militias, road blockades, Abu Tira attacks (central reserve forces), looting and rape, Cycmanick said he had 'not heard anything about these events, but promised to discuss the matter and carry out an investigation.'

He said the situation in which they work in 'difficult' and said they are overstretched to enter areas controlled by the government and the armed movements.

Cycmanick said the biggest challenge facing the mission was to cover the vast region of Darfur with only 20,000 soldiers.

He said the only way out of the crisis was to 'return the government and armed movements to a platform to negotiate in Doha and agreement.'

He called for the leaders of the Justice and Equality Movement, the Sudan Liberation Movement faction led by Abdel Wahid and Minni Minawi to negotiate with the government for peace in Darfur.

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