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Darfur: Solution Must Come From Africans

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    Darfur - Solution Must Come From Africans By Mohammed Eisa Ismail New Vision October 1, 2006 http://allafrica.com/stories/200610020331.html Kampala The recent
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 7, 2006
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      Darfur - Solution Must Come From Africans
      By Mohammed Eisa Ismail
      New Vision
      October 1, 2006
      http://allafrica.com/stories/200610020331.html


      Kampala


      The recent gathering of world leaders in New York which coincided with
      the annual meeting of the U.N General Assembly has witnessed a
      historic moment where African leaders have showed their readiness to
      consolidate their position in face of the foreign pressures and
      interference. Despite the urgency usually accorded to traditional
      international hot issues like the situation in Palestine, Iraq and
      Afghanistan, those issues have eventually subsided to give room to the
      African most important issue, the Darfur crisis, which took the lead
      in the international debate, especially in the summit meeting of the
      African Peace and Security Council which convened in New York this month.

      Amidst all the provocative and antagonist propaganda and the
      well-orchestrated mischievous fallacies against Sudan, the wise vision
      of our African leaders in New York triumphed when they undertook a
      resolute decision of retaining the African troops (AMIS) in Darfur.

      The historic moment re-affirmed the guiding principle of our African
      forefathers: the necessity of solving the African problems by Africans
      themselves. This was a culmination of a well-coordinated effort by the
      government of Sudan, with the aid of brotherly countries in the
      African and Arab World, to seek a durable and comprehensive solution
      to the crisis in Darfur.

      It is important to note that the President of Burkina Faso who
      presided over the meeting of the Peace and Security Council announced
      that the United Nations had pledged to support AMIS technically and
      logistically, while the financial resources are to be provided by the
      Arab League.

      Even before that, Sudan, despite its meagre resources had pledged to
      avail a considerable amount of financial resources for the sake of its
      people in Darfur and to help finance and revitalise the African troops
      in the region. That was part of a comprehensive plan forwarded by the
      Sudan government to the UN Secretary General prior to the adoption of
      the Security Council Resolution No. 1706.

      Khartoum's rejection of the infamous Resolution No. 1706, which called
      for the replacement of the African troops by foreign troops, was not a
      result of any hidden intentions or disregard of the suffering of the
      Sudanese citizens in Darfur, as some biased people are saying. Sudan's
      position was that it was indeed hypocrisy to call for deployment of
      17,000 UN troops on grounds that the African troops lacked financial
      resources and logistics. Yet the African troops need just a small
      fraction of the funds to be spent on the UN troops. Then why not use
      part of the money that would be spent on UN troops to support the
      African troops' sacred mission of monitoring the security and
      humanitarian aspects in Darfur.

      Sudan prefers the African soldier whose culture and tradition and are
      compatible with those of the indigenous people of Darfur. The
      affinities and intermarriage among the different racial groups,
      whether from an African or Arabic descent, have through the years
      shaped the unique identity of the Darfurian people. The root causes of
      the conflict are mainly the pervasive underdevelopment and the
      consequent rivalries between different tribes over the meagre
      resources in the mostly arid region.

      The infamous Resolution No. 1706 was obviously cooked in Western circles
      that are aimed at balkanising Sudan and seeking to gain hegemony over
      Darfur in pursuit of oil, uranium and other mineral and natural
      resources in that region.

      Sudan's vehement rejection of the conspiracies was basically because
      the dignity and pride of the government and the whole nation was at
      stake. The resolution was intended to undermine the sovereignty of the
      state and to bring about neo-colonialism in the Sudan and the whole
      region. The replacement of the African troops by U.N troops, to
      paraphrase the Gambian President, is an insult to Africa. It is
      Sudan's conviction that the Darfur crisis is about to reverse, now
      that the African leaders have triumphantly intervened by reaffirming
      the role of Africa in Darfur.

      The ensuing optimism is further enhanced by the well-concentrated
      efforts and practical plans that were agreed upon to effectively and
      comprehensively end the crisis in Darfur. In the heart of these plans
      are the contacts which are underway to convince the other rebel
      factions to agree to and join the Darfur Peace Accord which was signed
      in Abuja, May 2006, under the auspices of President Olusegun Obasanjo,
      and endorsed by the African Union and the international community.

      With the gradual and continued improvement in the security situation,
      save for sporadic and minor attacks mainly by the Salvation Front
      which is yet to join the peace process, more displaced persons are
      heading back to their villages. In such a situation, the government's
      strategical plan with the help of SLA leader Manny Arkoy Mennawi who
      had been appointed Chief Advisor to the President, and with the
      assistance of brotherly African and Arab countries, would eventually
      help to resettle the displaced persons and rehabilitate the whole area.

      It is only with the African countries' pivotal role and active and
      positive involvement of the Arab League and the international
      community, that a durable settlement of the Darfur problem will be
      achieved.

      The writer is the Deputy Head of Mission/Minister Plenipotentiary
      Embassy of Sudan in Kampala.

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