Sudan: UN, African Union Peacekeepers Deliver Critical Aid to East Darfur Displaced

The African Union - United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) and its humanitarian partners have delivered nearly 80,000 kilograms of critical humanitarian aid to thousands of civilians displaced by renewed fighting in Labado and Muhajeria, East Darfur, where access has been extremely difficult, the Mission announced today.

"Access remains a priority and we are pleased that this aid has made it to the people," said UNAMID Joint Special Representative Mohamed Ibn Chambas. "UNAMID and its UN Country Team partners will continue to ensure we reach those most in need," Mr. Chambas added.

The first phase of the operation, UNAMID said in a news release, was conducted on 23 April, and consisted primarily of delivering food rations, bottled water and medical supplies. The second phase of the operation is in the planning stages

The aid, delivered and protected by UNAMID peacekeepers, was provided by the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF), the World Food Programme (WFP), and the World Health Organization (WHO), by road under the protection of UNAMID peacekeepers.

The current humanitarian situation in the area emerged earlier this month as a result of clashes between the Sudan Liberation Army - Mini Minawi and the Government of Sudan.

At present, an estimated 20,000 displaced people have gathered around the Mission's team sites in Labado and Muhajeria.

Concerns over an increase in the number of security incidents in Darfur and access by the Mission to those areas most affected by conflict were reiterated on 16 April, once again, at a meeting of the Tripartite Coordination Mechanism on UNAMID.

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