12th May 2006
NGO STATEMENT ON DARFUR
The following organisations:
American Jewish World Service
Armenian National Committee of America
Collectif Urgence Darfour France
Darfur Relief and Documentation Centre
Human Rights Watch
International Crisis Group
JP Diplomatic Consultancy
MedBridge Stategy Center
Minority Rights Group International
National Association of Seadogs International
Never Again International
One World Trust
Save Darfur Coalition
Society for Threatened Peoples International (Gesellschaft für bedrohte Völker International)
· Commend and thank the African Union for the work it has done in Darfur.
· Welcome the African Unions Peace and Security Council communiqué of the 10th of March 2006 where it reiterated its support for transfer of its operations in Darfur to the United Nations.
· Hold the view that the donor community could do more in supporting the African Union Mission in Darfur with the required financial and logistical support.
· Maintain that the African Union is a vital institution in the furtherance of peace and stability in Africa.
· Note that over 200,000 people have died due to the conflict in Darfur.
· Condemn the targeting of civilians and the acts of war crimes and crimes against humanity in Darfur.
· Are alarmed that the humanitarian situation in Darfur continues to deteriorate with over 3 million people reliant on humanitarian aid.
· Denounce the banditry, insecurity and violence that continue to dramatically hinder aid operations.
· Are anxious that hundreds of thousands of civilians cannot be accessed by humanitarian agencies due to the increased insecurity.
· Is concerned that the World Food Programme, due to donor under-funding, has had to cut its rationing levels to semi-starvation levels.
· Is anxious that this humanitarian crisis could deteriorate to such an extent that monthly deaths could rise into tens of thousands a month.
· The African Union to undertake the proposed transfer of operations from the AU to the UN no later than the 1st of October 2006.
· The African Union to actively call upon its composite members to increase troop contributions for the AMIS force in Darfur.
· The African Union to assist in the protection of humanitarian convoys on the ground and urge the government of Sudan to guarantee free and unfettered access for humanitarian aid agencies.
· The donor community to immediately meet the financial needs of an increased contribution of troops to the AMIS mission.
· That the donor community should review in consultations with the African Union its mechanisms for supporting future African Union missions.
Comments from Individual Organisations and Contact Information
Aegis Trust - Dr. James Smith, Executive Director
"We congratulate the AU for its indispensable role in achieving a peace settlement in Darfur and call upon the international community to support the AU and the UN as they strive to implement the peace and provide for the security and sustenance of the people of Darfur."
Contact: Hratche Koundarjian, + 44 (0) 7905 911 039, [email protected]
Collectif Urgence Darfour France - Huguette Chomski Magnis, Vice President for International Relations
"The Darfur IDP and refugees are right to be wary of the Abuja Peace Agreement. The first condition to secure protection to the civilians and put a stop to the genocide is the disarming of the Janjawid militias. And that cannot be left to Khartoum Government's willingness!"
Contact: Huguette Chomski Magnis, 06 66 26 42 23, [email protected]
International Crisis Group
Contact: Andrew Stroehlein, Brussels-based Media Director: +32 (0) 2 541 1635
Never Again International, Poppy Sebag-Montefiore, Chair
"Youth from around the world have been horrified to stand by while a crisis ensues in Darfur. African Union troops have worked hard to protect civilians in Darfur and it is time now for leaders from every country to protect people."
Contact: Claire-Marie White, Communications Manager, +44 7860 870 789, [email protected]
Save Darfur Coalition - David Rubenstein, Coordinator
“The Save Darfur Coalition, its 165 member organizations, and the 130 million Americans we represent, would like to extend our sincerest gratitude to the African Union for the crucial roles it has played in both protecting the people of Darfur, and in mediating the recent Darfur Peace Agreement. The international community must now do its full part to end the genocide in Darfur by sending a United Nations peacekeeping force to help shoulder the burden that the African Union has borne alone for far too long. By working together and seizing this moment, the great institutions of the world can ensure that the hope and promise represented in the Darfur Peace Agreement are fully realized.”
Contact: Alex Meixner, Communications and Legislative Coordinator, 202 478-6194 office, 202 375-0936 cell, [email protected]