Home | News    Thursday 15 February 2007

US envoy fears "blood bath" in Darfur


Feb 14, 2007 (WASHINGTON) — The U.S. special envoy to Sudan said on Wednesday he feared aid groups could be forced out of Darfur and pro-government Janjaweed militia would try to close camps sheltering millions, resulting in a "blood bath."

Andrew Natsios

Andrew Natsios, appointed special envoy to Sudan last September, said the humanitarian situation was deteriorating in Darfur, with an effort to expel aid groups helping more than 2.5 million people displaced by the conflict.

"The government has lost control. There is anarchy in large parts of Darfur. The risk is that if the NGOs (nongovernmental organizations) leave, the U.N. humanitarian agencies leave ... there will be no one to care for these people in the camps who can be trusted," he told Reuters in an interview.

"There is a potential for an explosion if the agencies leave that would match the risk to people of the 2003 and 2004 time period," he said.

He said 300,000 to 400,000 people were killed during that time, which the U.S. has classified as genocide but Sudan says is not the case. Natsios said civilians were still being massacred and villages burned down.

It has become increasingly difficult for relief workers in Darfur and the U.N. said last week that attacks on aid workers there almost doubled in 2006.

In addition to insecurity, government-imposed bureaucracy and travel restrictions have hindered aid operations. About 14,000 aid workers operate in Darfur.

Natsios said there was also a risk the Janjaweed militia, with the backing of the Sudanese government, would violently try to close down camps where more than 2.5 million people are sheltering. The Janjaweed have been blamed for the worst atrocities in Darfur.

"It would be a blood bath," he said.


He said U.S. diplomacy would focus on protecting the humanitarian aid effort in Darfur.

"It is a matter of people’s lives being protected and preventing the expulsion of the aid community and any attacks on the camps. It affects people’s lives in a very direct sense," he said.

The United States is losing patience with Sudan’s government over its handling of Darfur and is considering a more robust response to put pressure on Khartoum, a strategy Natsios has referred to as "Plan B."

He declined to provide any details of Plan B, saying it was classified.

However, last week Natsios confirmed in congressional testimony a Washington Post report that financial steps were part of a secret, three-tiered package of coercive measures that Washington will implement if Sudan fails to stop the Darfur violence.

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice also said the United States had a number of options, including actions that could be taken by the U.S. Treasury if Khartoum bars an international force comprising troops from the United Nations and the African Union.

Advocacy groups accuse the Bush administration of delaying Plan B, and the Save Darfur Coalition has launched a petition urging the White House to implement tougher action.

Among actions the Save Darfur Coalition is calling for are stronger sanctions, a U.N. authorized no-fly zone and a contingency plan to respond to the potential collapse of security and humanitarian aid networks in Darfur.

Some U.S. lawmakers want the United States to take military action in Darfur, including Democratic Sen. Joseph Biden of Delaware but Washington fears it will lose allies if it takes this option.


Comments on the Sudan Tribune website must abide by the following rules. Contravention of these rules will lead to the user losing their Sudan Tribune account with immediate effect.

- No inciting violence
- No inappropriate or offensive language
- No racism, tribalism or sectarianism
- No inappropriate or derogatory remarks
- No deviation from the topic of the article
- No advertising, spamming or links
- No incomprehensible comments

Due to the unprecedented amount of racist and offensive language on the site, Sudan Tribune tries to vet all comments on the site.

There is now also a limit of 400 words per comment. If you want to express yourself in more detail than this allows, please e-mail your comment as an article to comment@sudantribune.com

Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

Comment on this article

The following ads are provided by Google. SudanTribune has no authority on it.

Sudan Tribune

Promote your Page too

Latest Comments & Analysis

In memory of Kerbino Wol 2020-06-29 08:17:47 By Robert Portada On 5 June 2020, Kerbino Wol announced that he was standing in solidarity with fellow citizens deep in the sacred land of South Sudan and launching the official manifesto of the (...)

Sudan: Dynamics of change and resistance of political parties to change  2020-06-26 19:15:55 By: Hussein Arko Menawi When we look at the political timeline in Sudan it gives us strong evidence, how the political future in Sudan is critical, bleak and confusing. It is also a good (...)

Sudan’s legitimate request for UN assistance. Who the opponents are and what their ulterior motives? (3-3) 2020-06-26 12:08:29 By: Trayo A. Al Ali Trayo Keep the focus on: Regardless of any inadvertent diversion punctuates the course of this discussion, it is extremely important for the reader to strickly keep the focus (...)


Latest Press Releases

S. Korea supports UN communities building resilience project in Sudan’s Blue Nile 2019-09-09 09:26:41 UNDP Sudan September 5, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - An agreement was signed on 5th of September between the Korean Ambassador, His Excellency. Lee Ki-Seong and Dr. Selva Ramachandran, Resident (...)

Sudanese lawyers and Human rights defenders back calls for civil rule 2019-04-26 10:22:06 Press statement by 55 Sudanese lawyers and Human rights defenders on Sudan Sit-in and Peaceful Protest Khartoum -24/04/2019 We, the undersigned (55) Sudanese lawyers and human rights defenders, (...)

South Sudan’s Lafon youth condemn killings of civilians by Pari community 2019-04-03 21:54:29 Press Statement on the Fighting between Pari/ Pacidi and Lotuko/Lokiri on 24/3/2019 Release by The Lafon County Youth Union: We, the Lafon County Youth Union hereby condemn the atrocities and (...)


Copyright © 2003-2020 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.