Home | Press Releases    Monday 10 October 2005

Sudan replies to AU accusations over security deterioration in Darfur


The Embassy of the Sudan & Permanent Mission to the African Union in Addis Ababa

Press Statement

Oct 10, 2005 (ADDIS ABABA) — This press statement is in response to the statement made by H.E. Ambassador Baba Gana Kingibe, the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union to the Sudan, issued in Khartoum on 1st October 2005 on what he termed as the deteriorating security situation in Darfur.

The statement issued by Ambassador Kingibe is a typical example of the microphone diplomacy he wanted to avoid.
It explicitly violates the rules of procedure of the Cease Fire Commission (CFC) and the Joint Commission.
It is a flagrant diversion from the methodology established by the said CFC rules of procedure.

Ambassador Kingibe announced his findings following the incidents of Tawila and other incidents without having the final investigation report of AMIS2. The length of time an incident takes to be conclusively deposed of is not an excuse for such an erratic and hasty statement to be issued on matters of high sensitivity.

Ambassador Kingibe deliberately opted to address the media directly without first resorting to and abiding by the established norms and rules of procedure.

In his address to the media he also violated other diplomatic norms by the language he used and the phrases he selected to raise his concerns as a Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union.

He is not in position to give moral lessons to a founding member of the African Union or to judge, without verification, whether the Government of the Sudan is acting in good faith or respecting its commitments.

The Government of the Sudan wishes also to point out that this is not the first time in which the Special Representative of African Union emphatically opts to take that course.

The way Ambassador Kingibe acted regarding the unverified reports of Shangile Tobaie incident is still a vivid example of the violation by the Special Representative of the established norms and procedures.

Most importantly, all the allegations in the form of findings which Ambassador Kingibe has pronounced require proof, specially those allegations relating to the use of aircrafts and what he described as the unethical practice of the Sudanese Army of using the same colours of the African Union Forces by way of camouflage in the recent attacks on Tawila.

The only way to provide proof is to have the captioned incident investigated as envisaged in the rules of procedure of the CFC [Cease-Fire Commission] and submitted to the Joint Commission before being released to any other party.

The abusive language he used against the Sudanese Armed Forces will be dealt with through other channels. The outcome of the media statement Ambassador Kingibe has made is quite damaging to the on-going peace process and in particular to the negotiations in Abuja.

It is quite clear that the recent attacks on Tawila by the rebels of Darfur and all other incidents following the incident of Malam as of the 23rd of August 2005 are all tactical maneuvers by the rebels to gain time and get political capital.

Knowingly or unknowingly, the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union has served the purposes of the rebels in Darfur by ignoring the attacks made by the rebels and by blindly focusing on the situations of self-defense and protection of civilians in which the Sudanese Armed Forces were forced to react.

Ironically, the special Representative has avoided the microphone diplomacy regarding the rebel attacks on Shairiya and Khazan Jadid, where the rebels killed 41 persons.

The collapse of the security situation in Darfur is mainly attributable to this kind of behaviour by the Special Representative, simply because his attitude suggests encouragement of further attacks by the rebels against the nomads in Darfur whose herds and properties remain a constant target to the attacks of SLA and other armed groups.

This is a situation that is calculated to spread the span of violence in Darfur simply because the targeted nomads will react and new tribal forces will enter the vicious circle of violence to the extent of civil war all over the region.

SLA and JEM refused to collaborate with the AU mission for the identification of the positions of their forces as called for by the N’djamena Agreement.

H.E. the Special Representative did not even bother to make a statement let alone a press conference to condemn the rebel attitude and violation of that important obligation and core security issue.

Unfortunately, also, the distinguished Special Representative equated the Government of the Sudan with SLA and other armed groups in Darfur. The Government of the Sudan is a partner with the African Union in the endeavours to pacify the region and address the underlying reasons for the violence and war.

The Special Representative constantly missed the point in addressing the problems by undermining the role of the Sudanese Armed Forces and tarnishing the image of a well - recognized African Force with a history of traditions and values.

Therefore, the Government of the Sudan totally rejects as baseless and biased the statement issued to the media in Khartoum on 1st October 2005 in flagrant violation of the agreed CFC norms and procedures by H.E. Ambassador Kingibe, the Special Representative of the African Union Chairperson to the Sudan on the issue of Darfur.

The Government of the Sudan reiterates its commitment and full readiness to continue its full support and cooperation with the African Union in spite of the inconsistent manner in which the Special Representative has so far conducted his mandate."

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Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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