October 3, 2016 (KHARTOUM) -The leader of the Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM-AW) Abdel-Wahid al-Nur Monday said that 1500 people were killed in Jebel Marra region in West Sudan due to exposure to chemical weapons by government forces.
- In this photo released by Amnesty, the skin of this victim’s back shows multiple circular wounds that appear to be from freshly popped blisters revealing fresh pink skin. According to the group, these circular wounds are consistent with exposure to a chemical warfare blister agent such as sulphur mustard. (Amnesty Photo)
In a report released last week, Amnesty International accused the Sudanese government forces of using chemical weapons repeatedly against civilians in the mountainous area of Jebel Marra in Darfur during the past eight months. The human rights groups said some 250 people were killed.
The assumed chemical attacks took place during a large-scale military campaign launched in January 2016 by the government forces in Jebel Marra against the Sudan Liberation Army/Abdel Wahid al-Nur (SLA/AW).
However, the Sudanese army spokesperson Ahmed Khalifa al-Shami denied Amnesty accusation and described it as false. Also, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Gharib Allah Khidir, denounced the “fabricated and unfounded accusations”, pointing that it aims to obstruct "the pioneering efforts" to achieve peace and stability and to promote reconciliation in Sudan.
In statements to the London based Alquds Alarabi newspaper Monday, the rebel leader said that 1000 women and more than 500 children died of the chemical weapons used by government force in its attacks on his forces.
“Amnesty International has conducted its investigation honestly and bravely,” al-Nur said.
He further called on Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey to stop supporting President Al-Bashir regime.
“Al-Bashir regime is killing Sudanese people using chemical weapons and it is unacceptable ethically and religiously for these countries to support his regime,” he stressed.
Also he said he had recently met international officials in France and before met the U.S special envoy for the Sudan, Donald Booth and he reiterated during these meeting the SLM-AW determination to topple the regime and to achieve change in Sudan, ruling out any negotiations.
he further called on the international community and EU countries to support diplomatically and politically his group "in order to (overthrow the Sudanese regime) and to achieve freedom and peace for the Sudanese people."
Regarding the ongoing efforts to reach a negotiated settlement with Sudanese government, al-Nur said that SLM-AW rejects to negotiate with Bashir’s regime because it committed atrocities, crimes against humanity and carried ethnic cleansing against Sudanese in Darfur, Blue Nile and Kordofan.
The rebel leader confirmed that SLM-AW has no contact with the Sudanese government as this implies that they participate in the "political game", as he said.
“We need a comprehensive solution, a change of the ruling regime, the departure of President Omer al-Bashir and the formation of a national government that works for freedom and equality, between all the citizens” he said.