November 11, 2010
For Immediate Release
Contact: Adeeb Youssif
Darfur Reconciliation and Development Organization (DRDO)
Email: [email protected]
Darfur: A Wake-Up Call for the World: Radio Dabanga Journalists Arrested
The Darfur conflict and genocide seven years was widely publicized: the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians, widespread sexual assaults, and the displacement of millions from their homes to camps with limited humanitarian services and poor security. But the conflict is nowhere near to an end and the suffering continues.
The recent actions by the Government of Sudan, which targeted and arrested 8 Darfuri human rights activists and journalists associated with Radio Dabanga who played a crucial role in documenting the sufferings of the people and getting the information to the rest of the world, highlights the continuing crisis.
Since 2006, when a fragile Darfur peace agreement was signed between one faction of the rebel movement and the Government of Sudan, there has been increasing fragmentation in Darfuri society and a significant deterioration in the humanitarian conditions for million of people trapped in limbo in camps – unable to go home and unable to move on to somewhere else. There have been allegations that the Government of Sudan trained the Janjaweed security forces to abduct international aid workers and personnel. The peace agreement has never really been implemented and is fundamentally in a state of collapse, with over 108 local, regional, national and international trial peace agreements, virtually none of them successful, and with no accountability to or involvement by the affected people in Darfur.
Pressure needs to build in the human rights and activist communities to strengthen the international demand for a neutral and comprehensive peace process in Darfur and to hold accountable major power brokers like the African Union, the UN Security Council, and the United States for their commitment to moving an authentic peace negotiation forward that includes the participation of the victims of the war.
Local sustainable development organizations are trying to build the capacity for community self-repair among the 400,000 internally displaced persons who have little hope of ever returning to the lands they were driven from.
But their eventual success is dependent on the world coming to understand that the war in Darfur is far from over.