Walking the talk or fleeing the scene: The pressing need for an effective role of UNAMID in Darfur

(27 January 2016) Since November 2014, there is increased demand from the Sudanese government for the UN/AU Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) to leave Sudanese soil. This demand came to light following the involvement of UNAMID in exposing the mass rape crime in Tabit. While the Sudanese government justifys its demand with claims of peace and stability in Darfur, the reality on the ground shows a steady increase in violence. For UNAMID to leave would exacerbate the severe protection and humanitarian crises in the region. Instead, discussions must focus on increasing the effectiveness of UNAMID. 

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Sudan must protect civilians in West Darfur and reign in security forces after village burned and protestors lethally shot

(14 January 2016) Sudanese authorities should immediately put in place measures to ensure the protection of civilians in and around El Geneina, the capital city of West Darfur state, and reign in state security forces following the lethal shooting of at least ten civilians by police and security personnel and the burning and looting of the nearby village of Mouli, approximately 15 kilometers south of El Geneina over the past week. Mouli was attacked and burned to the ground by suspected members of the Government’s Rapid Support Forces on 9 and 10 January. Four residents of Mouli were abducted during the attacks and their whereabouts remain unknown. On 10 January, Central Reserve Police and National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) fired live ammunition and tear gas to disperse an angry crowd that had gathered in front of the West Darfur Governor’s offices in El Geneina and set fire to property. It is thought that most people in the crowd had been displaced from Mouli earlier that morning and headed to the State governor’s office to demand protection. At least seven people were killed, including one 16-year old boy, and ten were injured when authorities fired on the crowd.