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Sudanese army, Darfur rebels deny humanitarian access to Jebel Marra, UN says

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January 31, 2013 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese government and rebel groups are denying humanitarian access to many parts of the Jebel Marra area in Central Darfur, Eduardo del Buey, Deputy Spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General said on Thursday.

The Sudan Liberation Movement led by Abdel Wahid Al-Nur (SLM-AW) seized Golo and Jaldo, mountainous area of Jebel Marra on 24 and 28 December. Since then, the Sudanese army has attempted to retake the positions, clashing several times with the rebel group.

In a meeting on 9 January with the deputy UNAMID chief Aichatou Mindaoudou in Zaleingi, the governor of Central Darfur state, Youssef Tibin, said that some 850 families had been forced flee to Nertiti village as a result of the fighting.

"The African Union United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) reports that access to many parts of the Jebel Marra area remains blocked due to sporadic clashes between government forces and armed movements", Eduardo said in a statement released on Thursday.

He further stressed on the need to allow the joint mission, UN agencies and humanitarian partners full access to affected populations in Sudan’s western Darfur region.

The hybrid mission also repeated its call to all parties to cease fighting and remains engaged in facilitating reconciliation efforts.

(ST)

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