Home | News    Wednesday 11 May 2011

S. Sudan civil society groups petition UN Security Council over Abyei crisis

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By Julius N. Uma

May 10, 2011 (JUBA) - A coalition of civil society activists, joined by students in various schools within Juba - South Sudan’s regional capital - on Tuesday took to the streets and peacefully marched in support and solidarity with the people of the disputed border territory of Abyei.

The demonstrators, numbering in the hundreds, openly condemned the escalating violence in oil-producing region, agitating for the timely conduct of the long-awaited referendum in the region as per the provisions outlined within the Abyei protocol in the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA).

Demonstrators paralysed businesses and public transport along Buluk road leading to the ministries of the regional government. In July South Sudan will become independent after a referendum – also agreed to in the CPA – witnessed a massive vote for separation.

Abyei was supposed to hold a simultaneous plebiscite to decide whether the region would join the South or remain as part to North, to which it was transferred by Britain in 1905.

Since the South Sudan referendum violence in Abyei has killed tens of people. One of the placards held by students on Tuesday read: “Abyei referendum must take place without delay. We want peace.”

At the core of the impromptu demonstration was a memo, signed representative of 30 different organizations, which was directly addressed to Haile Menkerios, the special representative of the UN Secretary General in Sudan.

“We, the coalition of southern Sudan civil society organizations constituted as different interest group, who experienced the suffering, destruction, loss of lives and tragedies associated with war do hereby agreed that, as per the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, the government of Sudan is reneging to implement the Abyei Protocol and therefore would like to remind the guarantors of the CPA, the international community and specifically the United Nations Security Council that genocide is being committed by NCP[National Congress Party] militias in Abyei,” the memo says.

The NCP, Sudan’s ruling party, have insisted that the Misseriya - a nomadic Arab who enter the region to graze their cattle – should be allowed to vote in the referendum. The SPLM, the former rebels who govern South Sudan, have insisted that only the Dinka Ngok tribe and residents of Abyei should be accorded voting rights.

Early this month Menkerios met South Sudan president, Salva Kiir and the two, according to a statement from UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS), extensively discussed the security situation in Abyei.

“The two parties have committed that the Kadugli and Abyei Agreements shall be carried out with the facilitation and participation of the UN. UNMIS will also support the containment and temporary security measures while a solution is being sought. We have agreed here to immediately move on it,” reads the UNMIS statement, issued after the meeting.

But in the petition seen by Sudan Tribune, the coalition members urged the international community to exert pressure and ensure that the Khartoum regime accepts and abides by its international obligations to fully implement all the CPA provisions, citing the Abyei protocol and all provision addressed within the July 2008 Permanent Court of Arbitration ruling.

“The referendum for the people of Abyei must be concluded before 9th July, 2011, and are not marred by violence and human rights violations that could lead to a humanitarian emergency,” further agitates the memo.

However, in addition to the referendum issue, the activists called for efforts towards ongoing post-referendum negotiations between the south and northern parties, particularly regarding border demarcation, oil sharing, citizenship, national debts and water, to be expedited.

Two other separate memos were also written to South Sudan’s president, Salva Kiir and James Wanni Igga, the speaker of South Sudan Legislative Assembly. In both letters, the demonstrators lauded the duo for their able leadership, urging them not to give up in their struggles to fulfill the mandates to the southern population.

The event comes just days after development ministers from Norway, United Kingdom and the United States advocated a peaceful resolution of the Abyei conflict between the key parties involved during a meeting they held with the South Sudan leader in Juba.

They included Erik Solheim, Norway’s minister for environment and international development, Andrew Mitchell, the UK secretary of state for international development and Rajiv Shah, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) administrator.

In a joint statement delivered at a press conference in Juba, the three ministers urged both the north and south ruling parties to ensure that outstanding issues like the Abyei referendum conduct and the demarcation of the north-south borders are resolved peacefully resolved before the July declaration of South Sudan’s independence.

Over the years, the US, Norway and the UK, better known as the Troika countries, have been credited for their longstanding humanitarian and development partnership with Sudan. Notably, however, they played key roles in brokering the 2005 peace deal, which ended over two decades of war between north and south.

(ST)

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Kind regards,

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  • 11 May 2011 07:12, by onlysonmabi

    That is good move, but we the Students in South Sudan it is good not to relay our selves on International counties as you have seen what had happen in Libya those first class counties are for business.
    We need to demonstrating but ready for any actoing because it is our time.

    repondre message

    • 11 May 2011 16:22, by Tongthok

      Dear Southerners,

      I have never talk about Abei issues but I think time will tell the solution. Abei people are dinka and were transfer by British to Southern Kordofan 1905, and therefore, they are Southerners period.It’s just a matter of time for NCP to face no-fly-zone whether they like it or not.

      We got oil we got money and we can do anything we want not only for Abei but for people like the Nubians, and Darfurs they are our people.Here is how Khartoum government gonna look just like this little story.Once upon a time, there was a dog who lives near a bridge.The dog pick up the bone and went across a bridge but looking below the bridge, the dog saw the image of the bone and though there was another bone in the water. The poor dog jumped in the water and lost both bone and with that say, NCP should be careful of their wish before losing the entire country which will leave them with Khartoum only and nothing else.Abei is ours and no where in the world brothers in blood can be separated and if Khartoum want play dirty, give us a moment, Pakistan and India problem will be the least.Happiness is for those who think they have achieved something but to me until NCP come to it knees otherwise, it won’t be like 20 years ago when NCP birds terriorists Southerners, this time is different. Continue showing us owl’s eyes and you will rolled them back in. SPLA Oyee, Republic Of South Sudan Oyee, patience..., patience.

      Tongthok

      repondre message

    • 11 May 2011 20:40, by Ito

      Dear Monyiomiji,

      This is a true political move which is recommended by founders of the field of political science and philosophy to be the best exercise especially in a situation such the Abyei. The issue of Abyei needs to be probe properly and massive protest should be organized worldwide to demonstrate and show solidarity to our true brothers and sisters in Abyei.

      Yes, I am behind you and encourage you to keep doing what you are currently doing like this one. They say, "Only those who dream makes it come true" let us forget arabs who can never dream. Our dream to bring the Abyei back to south has now started to come to live. So brothers remember that God is with you all times and will help us realized this critical dream.

      God bless

      repondre message

  • 11 May 2011 07:46, by william

    The move by civil society activist is seconded because I can not see the rationale why NCP insisting in misleading messira meanwhile they were ruled out of Abyei by perament court of Abtration (PCA) which was accorded powers by SPLM and NCP to find solution for Abyei. The court affirmed that Abyei is for Nine Ngok dinka chiefdom and no single messira mentioned by the ruling. Therefore, the international communities who are mediating CPA can identify from there who is intending to drags people back to skirmish. Otherwise, I can say international supper powers are overpowered by the wanted criminal or else they would have not even ask a single question on who is legible to vote in Abyei.since everything was stipulated by perament coutr in 2008 rulling.

    Make sure Abyei must be another Gaza strip between north and south so did Isreal and Plastine. And we can not and will never left it to terrorist and their nomadic in whatever cost.

    William wol Mayuol

    repondre message

  • 11 May 2011 08:15, by Emmanuel Ajang Solomon

    Bravo,U have all shown the world that, Abiey is ours and will be ours.
    Remember one thing at a time so that U succeed and we are almost through with Abeiy, Arabs are trying to make sure we have problems amongst our selves what about our plans with our brothers in all directions wait and see Khartoum will come to know one we are there to fulfill our mission of all marginalized people in Sudan.

    repondre message

    • 11 May 2011 17:12, by sudinka

      Dear readers when i look in to the issue of Abyei is Just matter of time us to through with our independent and Abyei people will tell Jalabaa we are from South Sudan off. who are those Misserah.claiming Abyei tiomda.even if Arab make it difficult because of oil in the region the will not transport that oil to world market .south Sudan together we can bring Abyei Nuba mountain Darfur and East.

      repondre message

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