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Security Situation Deteriorates in North Darfur

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Security situation is deteriorating in North Darfur as clashes between Sudanese forces and rebels continue to rage in the region.

Reports say aerial bombardment of civilian areas by the Sudanese armed forces has killed seventy civilians in Hashaba, North Darfur last week.

Today in Washington DC, Department Spokesperson Victoria Nuland says the United States is deeply concerned by the sharp deterioration in security in North Darfur and adjacent parts of Jebel Marra, Sudan.

UNAM
A UN vehicle is shown badly damaged the day after an ambush in West Darfur, Sudan. Four Nigerian peacekeepers of the African Union-UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) were killed and eight more injured when unidentified men attacked their convoy during a night patrol, approximately 2 kilometres from UNAMID's regional headquarters in El Geneina.
UN Photo
The United States is concerned with the civilian casualties as a result of aerial bombardment and fighting between Sudanese government forces and rebels between September 25-27.

"We call for an immediate and unconditional end to the aerial bombardment of civilian areas by the Sudanese Armed Forces." -Ms. Nuland

Ms. Nuland says the attacks against the civilians are an unacceptable violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1591 and a violation of international humanitarian law.

She adds the United States is also appalled by the recent deadly attack on a patrol of the United Nations African Union Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) on October 2 in El Geneina, West Darfur, which resulted in the death of four peacekeepers and the injury of eight others.

"The United States condemns in the strongest possible terms all attacks on UNAMID personnel." -Ms. Nuland

The US renews call on the Government of Sudan and the Darfur Regional Authority to conduct promptly full and credible investigations into all attacks against UNAMID, and to hold the perpetrators accountable.

These attacks mark a significant and alarming worsening in security in Darfur, which is having a serious impact on the implementation of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur, Ms. Nuland noted.

She cites that a recent tightening of restrictions on humanitarian actors in Darfur, including UN agencies, also raises doubts about the Government of Sudan's willingness to implement the agreement.

Ms. Nuland emphasizes that the Government of Sudan should allow UNAMID and humanitarian actors full and unfettered access to all parts of Darfur in order to protect and assist the victims of the conflict, and to support implementation of the agreement.

Last month, security situation has began deteriorating at North Darfur's town of Kutum as violence rages again in the South Sudanese state, leading to several casualties.

Reports say rash of shootings, including an assassination attempt on a local official were cited by United Nations-African Union peacekeeping mission in Darfur, known by the acronym UNAMID.

According to UNAMID, the incidents reportedly resulted in several dead and wounded, and UNAMID evacuated wounded civilians to El-Fasher by helicopter for emergency medical treatment.

Earlier in August this year, the United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) leadership expressed its deep concern over the spread of violence and attacks against civilian population in Kutum, North Darfur.

The series of incidents began on 1 August when the Commissioner of the district of Alwaha, in Kutum town, and his driver were shot dead.

On the same day armed men surrounded Kassab, looted the market, burnt down the Sudanese Police post in the camp and reportedly killed four persons.

Reports say UNAMID has taken measures, including 24/7 protection force presence in affected IDP camps to protect civilians and reinforced the strength of its forces.

Mina Fabulous follows the news, especially what is going on in the US State Department. Mina turns State Department waffle into plain english. Read more stories by Mina Fabulous. Contact Mina through NewsBlaze.

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