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The Massaleit Community in Exile
Press Release
February 15, 2004

As numerous reports in the international media have reported recently, the targeting of fleeing civilian refugees by the Sudanese military and their local proxies in the Jangaweed militias continues. The crimes of the Sudanese government that have been reported in the media, such as the aerial bombing of refugees along the border with Chad, represent only a fraction of the atrocities that continue to be committed inside of Western Sudan. The situation has continued to deteriorate as the Sudanese army and the Jangaweed step up their attacks on unarmed civilians to extend their policy of ethnic cleansing. The government’s goal in Western Sudan is to terrorize and expel the civilian population so that the rebel groups fighting the regime are deprived of potential support in the rural areas. These tactics of the Sudanese government are all too familiar from previous experiences in Southern Sudan, the Nuba Mountains, and areas of oil production.

The government of Sudan has one of the worst records of human rights abuses in the world. Government-directed murder, rape and other brutalities are so systematic in Sudan that there can be little doubt that terror is government policy. Few regimes in the world have so consistently and brutally attacked their own people over such a long period of time. Because the outside world has stood by for so many years and allowed these serial atrocities to occur again and again, the regime knows that it will not face any serious pressure to change its criminal policies. This must change.

In the latest incidents, the Sudanese army and Jangaweed militias followed up their attack on refugees at Tina with further attacks on other makeshift refugee camps. On the morning of 4 February 2004 at approximately 11 am, refugee camp at Gellani was attacked and over fifty refugees were killed, including women and children. Chadian officials witnessed this attack but did nothing to prevent the violence from continuing.

The Massaleit Community in Exile calls upon the international community to bring the perpetrators of these crimes to justice at the international court in The Hague. An investigation should be begun and it should indict not only the local commanders on the ground in Western Sudan, but also the ruling clique in Khartoum which has made terror and violence into state policy. We have seen how ineffective international pressure has allowed the NIF regime in Sudan to continue its bloody human rights abuses unabated, and to extend them to new parts of the country. New measures must be taken against the
Sudanese regime if this violence is to be stopped. International financial and travel sanctions against the ruling governmental elite in Khartoum would be a bare minimum starting point.

Western Sudan is remote from most international political concerns, but the violence and brutality being meted out against innocent civilians there is perhaps the worst human rights situation in the world today. The Massaleit Community in Exile begs all people to take an interest in this enormous criminal enterprise being committed by the government of Sudan so that it can be stopped.

- Mr. Mohamed Adam Yahya,
- Chairman and Spokesman,
- The Representatives of the Massaleit Community in Exile (RMCE)
- Telephone:(434)409 9638
- Email: kamasarakendy@hotmail.com or massaleitcommunity@yahoo.com
- Visit the Massaleit Community Web site for previous reports on human rights
abuses in western Sudan http://www.massaleit.info (use MS Internet)

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