November 23, 2010
For Immediate Release
Contact: Adeeb Yousif
Darfur Reconciliation and Development Organization (DRDO)
Email: [email protected]
Darfur Update: Causes Might Differ But Death is One
Peace Process Failure Exerting a Heavy Price in Malnutrition and Assault
Since 2003, when the international community was up in arms about the Darfur conflict and genocide that caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands, 3 million internally displaced person (IDPs) have continued to live in 77 camps inside Darfur and 9 refugee camps located on the eastern border of Chad. 68% of the IDP’s are women and children. They are totally dependent on foreign aid for survival and protection.
For the last seven years, the permanently displaced residents in 86 camps have been fed largely by The World Food Program (WFP). New arrivals to the camps, which are on-going, are not registered with the program.. The World Food Program recently reduced the food ration by half and eliminated vital mainstays like sugar and beans. This has created a high incidence of malnutrition in the camps. In Zalingei where over 100,000 IDPs are currently living, there is acute malnutrition reported by the one operating health clinic, which can do little but bury people.
Security and safety is also a huge challenge, not only for the internally displaced in the camps, but also for those who remain in the villages. The government of Sudan recently carried out attacks in East Jebel Marra and Kuma where over 100 civilians were killed and hundreds more displaced from their homes. The Government of Sudan is killing its own people with little international oversight or outrage.
An African Union/United Nations Hybrid operation in Darfur (UNAMID) came to protect civilian aid, but over 40 peacekeepers have been killed, and many others abducted.
It is urgent for the international commnity to prevent the daily killing and dying that the failed peace process is leveling on the suffering people of Darfur. Americans need to encourage their government to pressure parties like the United Nations, the African Union and the Government of Sudan to make serious attempts to resolve the conflict.
Due to the inability of most international relief organizations to work effectively in the troubled region, it is also important to support local organizations working directly in the camps and villages of Darfur to develop the capacity to feed and provide for themselves.
A list of Darfur-based development efforts and clinics is available upon request.