Home | News    Monday 13 April 2009

Darfur kidnappers say aid workers to die if France does not meet demands


April 12, 2009 (KHARTOUM) – Armed men in Sudan’s Darfur region said their abduction of two female aid workers was intended to send a signal to French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who last year won the release of staff of Zoe’s Ark.

The kidnappers call themselves "Falcons for the Liberation of Africa,” but according to Radio Dabanga, which interviewed the member of national parliament representing Ad el-Fursan where the abduction occurred, the abductors are former janjaweed of the Abbala tribe.

Abductors are ostensibly seeking judgment on the organization Zoe’s Ark, a French group once charged with abducting children to Europe; six Zoe’s Ark employees were convicted but then pardoned on March 31, 2008 by Chadian President Idriss Deby.

"Falcons for the Liberation of Africa” are publicly demanding that the Zoe’s Ark staff face a re-trial, but French officials have declined to say what the kidnappers are demanding in the direct negotiations. Actually, the workers’ employer itself says that it is leading the negotiations.

The aid workers, a Canadian and a French national, were kidnapped on the night of April 4-5 in Darfur and they say they are being treated well. They work for Aide Medicale Internationale, whose staff lost two Sudanese colleagues in February, gunned down by men on horseback.

The Canadian hostage, Stephanie Joidon, told AFP in a phone call on Sunday. "We are being treated well. We do not know where we are." The French abductee is named Claire Dubois.

The kidnappers already contacted a variety of international news outlets. In a telephone interview with France24 television, a man claiming to be one of the kidnappers threatened to kill the women unless France re-opens the trials of members of Zoe’s Ark.

The abduction comes soon after the release last week in Bindis, West Darfur, of two kidnapped workers of the French organization Triangle.

Four workers with Doctors Without Borders (MSF), three of them foreigners, were kidnapped March 11 at gunpoint by uniformed border guards, according to an eyewitness who spoke with Radio Dabanga. Another employee of a Canadian-headquartered aid group was shot dead March 23 when gunmen entered his living quarters.

The Government of Sudan expelled 13 aid groups from Sudan after March 4. Soon after the expulsion occurred, a UN official told Sudan Tribune that the move effectively represented the destruction of the aid effort as it had been constituted up till then.

Officials, including the president of Sudan, subsequently vowed to “Sudanize” aid efforts within one year, removing all the international groups.

During the past three years (from 2006 through 2008), more incidents of major violence against aid workers occurred in Sudan than in any other country in the world, according to a report released Wednesday by the London-based Overseas Development Institute.


Comments on the Sudan Tribune website must abide by the following rules. Contravention of these rules will lead to the user losing their Sudan Tribune account with immediate effect.

- No inciting violence
- No inappropriate or offensive language
- No racism, tribalism or sectarianism
- No inappropriate or derogatory remarks
- No deviation from the topic of the article
- No advertising, spamming or links
- No incomprehensible comments

Due to the unprecedented amount of racist and offensive language on the site, Sudan Tribune tries to vet all comments on the site.

There is now also a limit of 400 words per comment. If you want to express yourself in more detail than this allows, please e-mail your comment as an article to comment@sudantribune.com

Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

Comment on this article

The following ads are provided by Google. SudanTribune has no authority on it.

Sudan Tribune

Promote your Page too

Latest Comments & Analysis

Is lack of ‘political will’ an incurable disease in South Sudan? 2019-10-22 11:53:57 By James Gatdet Dak Lampuar October 21, 2019 – Without political will, commitment and trust among leaders in South Sudan, achieving peace and stability will painfully remain an illusion for a (...)

UNSC, Machar and Lam Akol visits to Juba: Will peace come? 2019-10-21 11:56:29 By James Okuk The coming of the members of UN Security Council to Juba with arrival of Dr Riek Machar and Dr Lam Akolto engage in high-level meetings on evaluation of the status of (...)

Kiir-Riek second face-to-face meeting in Juba 2019-10-20 17:22:30 By Bol Khan The Saturday Arrival of Dr Riek Machar for second Face-to-Face Meeting with Pres. Salva Kiir in Juba rejuvenates and raises hope that the outstanding issues including security (...)


Latest Press Releases

S. Korea supports UN communities building resilience project in Sudan’s Blue Nile 2019-09-09 09:26:41 UNDP Sudan September 5, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - An agreement was signed on 5th of September between the Korean Ambassador, His Excellency. Lee Ki-Seong and Dr. Selva Ramachandran, Resident (...)

Sudanese lawyers and Human rights defenders back calls for civil rule 2019-04-26 10:22:06 Press statement by 55 Sudanese lawyers and Human rights defenders on Sudan Sit-in and Peaceful Protest Khartoum -24/04/2019 We, the undersigned (55) Sudanese lawyers and human rights defenders, (...)

South Sudan’s Lafon youth condemn killings of civilians by Pari community 2019-04-03 21:54:29 Press Statement on the Fighting between Pari/ Pacidi and Lotuko/Lokiri on 24/3/2019 Release by The Lafon County Youth Union: We, the Lafon County Youth Union hereby condemn the atrocities and (...)


Copyright © 2003-2019 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.