Home | News    Friday 7 November 2003

Sudan asks UN to convince rebels to let food into northeastern town

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KHARTOUM, Nov 7 (AFP) — The Sudanese government has urged the United Nations to talk rebels into allowing much-need food aid to reach a town they control in the country’s northeastern Kassala State, the independent daily Akhbar Al Youm said Friday.

Humanitarian Affairs Minister Ibrahim Mahmud Hamid asked the international body to convince the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) and northern opposition groups under the banner of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) to let non-governmental organizations deliver food to the town of Hamishkorib, the paper said.

Hamid described the situation in Hamishkorib as "castrophic" and said he had still to hear back from the UN.

A group of Kassal State’s MPs, meanwhile, issued a statement saying the town’s residents are suffering "acute" shortages of food and medicines.

They too appealed to the SPLA to "live up to the current peace atmosphere and peace spirit and allow delivery of humanitarian assistance to the people of Hamishkorib."

Sudan’s 20-year civil war coupled by famine and disease has claimed at least 1.5 million lives, with at least another four million displaced, according to humanitarian sources.

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