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US official regrets Sudan government’s use of “excessive force” against Darfur students

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December 12, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – U.S. Special Advisor for Darfur Dane Smith on Wednesday expressed dismay at the use of “excessive force” by Sudanese security authorities against the Darfuri students who demonstrated in demand of their rights last week, when four students died in what activists describe as murder.

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U.S. Senior Advisor Dane Smith during a visit to Darfur on 21 March 2011 (US State Department)

The visiting U.S. official told reporters in Khartoum that he is dismayed by the excessive force with which the authorities countered a sit-in organized on 7 December by Darfuri students at Al-Gazira University in central Sudan in demand of exemption from tuition fees as arguably stipulated under the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) which was signed in 2010 between the government and the former rebel Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) with the aim of ending the nine-year conflict in the region.

The death of the students, which activist groups blamed on loyalists of the ruling National Congress Party, sparked a wave of demonstrations across universities but the authorities managed to contain them. The Association of Darfur Students said that the four died “fighting for their right to free education”. The group also says that 140 students were arrested in the demonstrations that followed the events of Al-Gazira.

Smith described the death of the students as “shocking” and added that he raised this issue during his meetings with Sudanese officials this week.

The US official also expressed disappointment at the “limited” implementation of the DDPD, which was boycotted by main rebel groups, saying it has been marred by lack of funding for reconstruction and the government’s failure in disarming tribal militias who were used by the government to fight the insurgency.

Smith also said that the Sudanese government had shown “very little interest” in investigating the crimes committed in the region or in bringing the perpetrators to justice.

The International Criminal Court has issued a warrant for the arrest of Sudan’s President Omer Al-Bashir on charges of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide he allegedly masterminded in the region. The UN says 300,000 people may have died since the conflict erupted in 2003.

(ST)

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  • 13 December 2012 10:34, by Aaban

    Too late for you to save us here in this fail state of blasphemous al Bendairya al Dahmashya Hashimite criminal government of warnted dead murderes who have already sold their soul to evil power, arresting this thugs regrade criminal will bring peace to our country, coward can kill so that he will remain free from threat, and that what they have beefing do for long,

    repondre message

  • 13 December 2012 12:32, by telfajbago

    Dane Smith should stop shading crocodile tears because its no other than his administration who opened the appitiude of the regime to continue its crime unabated by supporting peace a greement that does not worth the papers its written with.So what do you else expect from genocide regime to do for Darfurian Students when your administration provide political and diplomatic cover.

    repondre message

  • 13 December 2012 12:54, by Tutbol

    Be reminded people, the USA foreign policy of the Sudan has been outsource to the whitehall in the UK. All about Obama is a farce, but the deal is to keep the Sudanese down by their arabs financiers as best as they can. But the marginalised Sudanese won’t buy these craps any more. The US & their evil cosy ally, the UK believe, they can impose their arab finaciers on the Sudanese. Keep watch!

    repondre message

    • 13 December 2012 14:19, by South Dengjok

      Dear Me,
      useless Darfurian,why r u crying now while u were friends and brothers 2 Jalaba(Khartoum) when S.Sudanese were fighting 4 self determination? u were those who were killing S.Sudanese Too much,don,t u know that Jalaba is the stupid mad and top dog person among the human being on the earth?,u cry until u remember what u did 2 us cuze u were bought wiz money to kill us back in the day.

      repondre message

      • 13 December 2012 14:28, by South Dengjok

        Dear Me,
        If u want a good friend don,t make Arab(Khartoum Jalaba) to be ur friend cuze
        1.He will kill u when u have the properties and take them
        2.He will not keep the secret and deal that u made wiz him
        3.He will need u 2 be a guy
        4.He will eat wiz u without washing is hand
        5.He will need u to support terrorist as they are terrorist
        6.He will make u useless and believe a Muslim & Arab more than

        repondre message

      • 13 December 2012 14:28, by South Dengjok

        Dear Me,
        If u want a good friend don,t make Arab(Khartoum Jalaba) to be ur friend cuze
        1.He will kill u when u have the properties and take them
        2.He will not keep the secret and deal that u made wiz him
        3.He will need u 2 be a guy
        4.He will eat wiz u without washing is hand
        5.He will need u to support terrorist as they are terrorist
        6.He will make u useless and believe a Muslim & Arab more than

        repondre message

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