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IOM to airlift South Sudanese stranded in White Nile


May 5, 2012 (KHARTOUM) — South Sudanese stranded in the capital of White Nile, Kosti, will be transported by airplane to Juba, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) announced on Friday, abandoning a previous plan to move them to Upper Nile State by bus.

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Members of a family rest while waiting for barges in order to continue their journey home, in a camp in the Nile port city of Kosti September 21, 2011. (Reuters)

Following the occupation of Heglig by the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), the governor of White Nile State Yusuf al-Shambali, citing insecurity concerns, said that the presence of over 12,000 South Sudanese in Kosti is no longer tolerated and they have to move before 5 May.

The South Sudanese have been blocked in the river port town, Kosti, since several months as Sudan decided to prevent his barges from travelling to South Sudan accusing the SPLA, of using it to transport soldiers and weapons from Juba to the border zones.

The returnees "will travel by bus to Khartoum and then board IOM charter flights to Juba, the South Sudan capital." IOM said on Friday, adding they are "currently developing an operational plan to start the movements as soon as possible."

Juba agreed to issue emergency travel documentation to facilitate their departure from Khartoum. Also, South Sudanese authorities agreed to make arrangements to move excess baggage given that every passenger will be allowed to take only 20kg of luggage with them in the fight.

"This is the best solution for all concerned and we are grateful to the Governments of Sudan and South Sudan for their cooperation and support in ensuring that the South Sudanese in Kosti can now move to South Sudan in safety and dignity," said IOM Sudan Chief of Mission Jill Helke.

IOM initially decided to transport the South Sudanese by road to Renk, in South Sudan’s neighbouring Upper Nile State. However, the international organisation opted for the second solution because this plan "was rejected on the grounds that Renk is already hosting over 17,000 returnees and transit facilities and services are overstretched."

IOM did not disclose whether the rejection came from Juba or the Upper Nile authorities.

Sudan earlier this week agreed to extend the deadline fixed by the governor to 20 May.


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  • 5 May 2012 07:11, by Kurnyel

    IOM is a part of the Sudan promblem you should leave these people here so that Janjaweed will take who is usefull and let who is not usefull go to South. Plze leave them alone they don’t wanted to go to South because they will be kills by Nuer or Dinka

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    • 5 May 2012 07:17, by Panthouandbeyond


      Are you OK?

      Panthou and Beyond

      repondre message

    • 5 May 2012 07:46, by zulu

      good job, goss. if they refuse their burges, use planes because they refused trains, buses and boats to transport our people. How stupid are these mosquitos to refuse revenue from the transit system?

      repondre message

    • 5 May 2012 07:51, by viper

      Kurnyel is a true islamized terrorist, he is among those who use to carry the explosives in their stomaches, just to go and die with pple. He is now wishing our pple in kosti to stay there untill the janjaweed kill them, what a confused terrorist! These southerners will soon come to Juba by air whether you like it or not, they will come

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  • 5 May 2012 07:15, by Panthouandbeyond

    This will be the best way to transport them to Juba; transporting them by buses was not a good idea because Albashir people will kill them on the road. Please bring them to Juba safe. Thanks

    Panthou and Beyond

    repondre message

  • 5 May 2012 12:06, by mohammed ali

    Sudan Tribune has to be honest. These pple went to Kosti upon a call from the GOSS before the referundum, so as to avoid what SPLA ptecieved as pressure from NCP to vote against session.Since that time they were abondoned by their government in Kosti , without food, money, jobs, shelter or health care.They were literally " abondoned" by the theifs who climed to have come to liberate them.

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    • 5 May 2012 12:11, by mohammed ali

      Why should Sudan or white nile governer be responsible for them? They will be a security hazared in any place of the world. They were 16 thousands and not 12 thousands.Certainly 16 thousands without food, money, shelter or jobs for more than one year is a big security problem.The blame should be directed to their government not to us!

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