The African Union Mission in the Sudan, (AMIS) wish to recall the statement issued on 2nd September, 2005 by the Special Representative of the African Union Commission Chairman, Ambassador Baba Gaba Kingibe, expressing disappointment that the Sudan Liberation Movement / Army (SLM/A) failed to return the seven Arab nomads and their camels abducted near Al Malam 23 – 24 August, 2005.
We note with regret that rather than send their representatives to the joint committee of Elders of the two sides suggested to resolve the matter peacefully through dialogue, the SLM have made statements even retracting their earlier admission of the abduction, though disputing the number of camels involved.
We equally regret that the Arab nomads who had so far shown admirable
restraint and extended the required cooperation to AMIS are now massing their forces and have given notice of their intention to launch an attack to retrieve the
abducted persons and their camels. Aware of the degrading security situation in
West Darfur in particular and some parts of North Darfur, an escalation of the situation in the Al Malam area will certainly have much wider repercussions.
We therefore, once again, call on the SLM/A to expeditiously release the abducted Arab nomads and their camels. Towards this end, we call on the Movement to nominate their representatives to the Elders resolution committee to which the Arab nomads have already nominated their representatives.
In the meantime, we appeal to the Arab nomads to continue to show restraint and allow approaches to a peaceful resolution proceed.
Finally, we appeal to the Government of the Republic of the Sudan and its agencies on the ground to bring their influence to bear on the aggrieved party not to take matters into their own hands and give the mediation efforts a chance to resolve the matter.
Khartoum, 8th September 2005