18 January 2013

Sudan: 'After Darfur Ethnic Cleansing in Sudan Continues in Nuba and Blue Nile'

Khartoum — The Khartoum government is using the same politics for the Nuba Mountains and Southern Blue Nile as it has in Darfur including scorched-earth tactics, committing war crimes and causing a famine.

This says the former UN Chief in Sudan, Mukesh Kapila in an interview with Radio Tamazuj.

Kapila was expelled in 2004 from Sudan after he warned the world, Darfur was facing a potential genocide like in Rwanda.

In the interview after a visit to the areas he says: "We travelled extensively along Sudan's border regions, going from the Nuba mountains to the Blue Nile State, right up to the border with Darfur, close to Abyei.

In the course of our travels, we witnessed the continuation of the crimes against humanity that president Bashir unleashed in Darfur ten years ago. Crimes that I witnessed as the UN chief, then. And I saw exactly the same tactics being used in the Nuba and the Blue Nile now, where Antonov warplanes everyday bomb the local residents.

Warplanes that we saw for ourselves in the past few days. There clearly is a scorched-earth policy in effect, which one can witness through the burnt-out villages and the many blackened fields one encounters while travelling through these regions.

And we saw a doubling of the malnutrition rate compared to the same period last year, when I last visited the region", Kapila stated, being a medical doctor and currently heading the Aegis trust in the United Kingdom.

Kapila wants investigations carried out by the international community: "So with bombs off the sky, continuing burning of their fields, this can hardly be anything else but ethnic cleansing. It is more or less the same as genocide. But in order to decide on this, we are asking that the international community, particularly the African Union and the UN, creates a formal investigation.

One similar to that which took place in Darfur after I spoke up and which eventually determined that what happened in Darfur ten years ago was of a genocidal nature, hence enabling the indictments by the ICC.

An investigation thus needs to take place in the Nuba mountains and the Blue Nile in order to determine whether the nature of the violence that has been going on for two years now should be considered as crimes against humanity or worse".

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