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Sudan denies allowing return of expelled aid groups

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June 11, 2009 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese government this week vehemently denied reports that is mulling allowing some of the aid groups expelled from the country last March to return.

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UN humanitarian affairs chief John Holmes (L) speaks during a joint press conference with senior Sudanese aid official Hassabo Mohammed Abdelrahman in Khartoum on May 7, 2009 (AFP)

In New York, the UN humanitarian chief John Holmes told reporters today that four of these groups have been authorized by Khartoum to resume work under new names or new logos.

“That possibility is there for all the organizations that were expelled and some of them have already taken advantage of that, and have got very recently new registrations, and will be restarting their operations” Holmes said.

“Four have already applied for new registration under their slightly changed new names and they have been accepted. I think the same possibility is open to others” he added.

But the Sudanese envoy at the UN Abdel-Mahmood Abdel-Haleem dismissed the assertions by Holmes.

"The people put it like we are throwing them from the window and they are coming from the door, or visa-versa. It is not like this” Abdel-Haleem told Voice of America radio.

“Those that have been expelled are expelled. They are not being allowed to come back. But whoever would like to apply afresh, credentials will be checked and a decision will be taken on a case-by-case basis” he added.

Yesterday the Sudanese foreign ministry spokesperson Ali Al-Sadiq told the official news agency (SUNA) that none of the evicted groups will return.

“The government position on this is very clear. These groups will not return to Sudan either using their names or other new ones” Al-Sadiq said.

The Sudanese diplomat said this issue was discussed with Holmes and US special envoy Scott Gration adding that the agreement was to “improve situation in Darfur”.

Some 4.7 million people rely on humanitarian aid in Darfur. Many of the camps, where some 2.7 million residents headed after the violence drove them from their homes, lie in flood plains.

Sudan kicked more than half a dozen groups in March accusing with collaborating with the International Criminal Court (ICC) to build a case against president Omer Hassan Al-Bashir.

The ICC issued an arrest warrant for Bashir in connection with war crimes allegedly committed in Darfur.

The international community including Sudan’s allies have criticized the decision but the no action has been taken by the UN Security Council (UNSC) to secure their return.

Some 4.7 million people rely on humanitarian aid in Darfur. Many of the camps, where some 2.7 million residents headed after the violence drove them from their homes, lie in flood plains.

Sudan has vowed not to allow any of the expelled groups to return and Bashir has announced that local aid groups would take over in a year time.

However, Khartoum has softened its stance ever since and hinted that it may allow the same groups to return but from different countries.

US officials have said that Sudan agreed to let back in the aid groups but did not give any details.

(ST)

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  • 12 June 2009 17:03, by Saaid Nafe

    In New York, the UN humanitarian chief John Holmes told reporters today that four of these groups have been authorized by Khartoum to resume work under new names or new logos.

    Hi John Holmets, don’t understand sudanese diplomacy literal and directly because it is full of devil diplomacy.Don’t you not see what is happening with the CPA .Take care not to follow them directly and literally otherwise they may fool you internationally.

    repondre message

    • 12 June 2009 23:17, by J. Noon

      To Saaid Nafe

      Your name does sounds but your comment is not a sudanese one !!!!

      repondre message

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