Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Egypt, Libya leaders reject UN Darfur force

Egypt and Libya are taking side with the Sudanese Government against sending any U.N. troops to Darfur. It is an area where 2.4 million people have fled their homes since the conflict erupted in February 2003. there and up to 300,000 people are estimated to have died. The two leaders believe that the area should remain under the African Union control because U.N forces are considered intervention.


At 3:14 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for the post.

At the outset I'd like to state that I'm Sudanese.

Any human being who cares about his fellow human being's welfare and safety would support UN forces in Darfur.

African Union forces are strapped of cash, vehicles and equipment and thus cannot patrol and police Darfur, which is the size of France, and thus they are not fulfilling their mandate by monitoring the ceasefire and policing the area and decreasing the violent banditry that has put so many peoples' livelihoods at risk.
UN forces on the other hand are *already* present in Sudan as part of the North-South peace deal and they have the ability to get financing, more troops and more and better vehicles.

As usual Sudan has been politicised by Egypt and Libya who talk of Sudan as if it's a colony. Both countries have an agenda as regards Sudan's resources.

Egypt fears closer US presence in Sudan, particularly in South Sudan, as this may tilt the balance of power away from it as regards Hegemony and control over the Nile's use for development.

Libya similarly does not want to see international troops in its backyard as this will put it under scrutiny - Libya is the biggest arms, as opposed to aid, supplier to Darfur. Libya also does not respect the International Law provision *not to interfere in the domestic affairs of other sovereign States* by interfering in the domestic politics of not only Darfur but Chad, the Central African Republic, Burkina Faso, the Ivory Coast amongst others...

What I do not follow is Egypt and Libya's logic. UN forces are already in Sudan as part of the North-South peace deal.

Why is Darfur exceptional?

Why didn't they protest over the peace deal? Egypt's reaction to Sudan's peace deal was lukewarm because it gives the Southerners the right to become an independent State, and this State might want to use the Nile's waters on an equitable basis whilst Egypt insists on its monopoly over the Nile's water.

Did Egypt and Libya refrain from criticising UN peace keeping forces in Sudan as part of the North-South peace deal have anything to do with the fact that the United States was the main sponsor of that deal..?

The Sudanese Government has shamelessly politicised the issue and is viewing it as a showdown with the armed groups regardless of the welfare of the people of Darfur.

Former Sudanese Prime Minister AlSadiq AlMahdi, who has been known for his stances that have been diametrically opposed to Egypt's, has wisely stated that the Sudanese Government should accept the transition from AU to UN peace keepers as the blue helmets were already present in Sudan and there was an international consensus to shift the peace keeping forces.

South Sudan Vice President and senior Sudan Peoples' Liberation Movement member Riek Machar has also urged Khartoum to accept UN blue helmets.

Whilst politicians and commentators politicise the issue - people continue to suffer in Darfur.

May the UN blue helmets enter Darfur as soon as possible!

At 3:40 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blue helmets were in Egypt between 1956 - 1957 to supervise withdrawal of troops after the Suez Crisis.

Blue helmets were also in Libya in 1994 to monitor the withdrawal of Libyan forces from the Aouzou Strip that they had occupied, and that the International Court of Justice granted and returned to Chad.

So what's the problem now?

At 11:51 AM, Blogger Egypeter said...

I FULLY support the U.N. involvement in the Sudan! And it shouldn't be a surprise that the Arab government of Egypt and Libya support the Arab government in Khartoum. Does that surprise anyone? I support the Southern Sudanese people who are fighting the Arabization campaign that is going on.

The situation in Darfur is disgraceful and still dire and if the UN forces can solve it...then Godspeed!

At 12:11 PM, Blogger Freedom for Egyptians said...

First Anonymous,

Thank you for your comment, it is so informative.

And I agree with you what you.

At 1:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi egypeter:

You make valid point however the situation in Sudan is a bit more complex and developed today than it was before.

Sudan's entered a new phase since the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in January 2005.

The Sudan Peoples' Liberation Movement is part of the government and there are more freedoms than was the case prior to the CPA - for example newspapers don't get censored anymore.

The harsh moulding of Sudan as an Arab state is no longer official government policy. This was the case between 1989-99 when a certain radical called Turabi was pulling the strings.

Today southerners are enjoying many more freedoms in North Sudan, many of them speak Arabic more fluently than North Sudanese and yet they are proud of their Arfican ethnicity and heritage. An example is Southern Foreign Minister Dr Lam Akol who chooses to speak in his fluent Arabic more than he speaks in his fluent English.

So it's a bit misleading to talk of Arabisation, since most of the Sudanese aren't Arabs, some of them are Afro-Arabs, Arabic is the lingua franca, everyone's mixed and this is attested by our brown skin and features and common culture. Arabisation is no longer government policy.

The Sudan Peoples' Liberation Movement of Garang is part of the government and wishes to create a 'New Sudan' - an African-Arab Sudan, an Arab-African Sudan, a Sudan where citizenship, not ethnicity or religion is the basis of rights.

At 1:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear all,

It's always nice to see both sides of an argument.

Jan Pronk, the UN Special Representative to Sudan has stated that there might be a 'popular' lashout against UN troops in Sudan and that terrorists might take advantage of the situation and no one needs that.

There is a high level of scepticism and mistrust of the 'west' following the Afghan and Iraqi wars.

People in Sudan in general and in Darfur in particular are wondering 'why' Sudan popped onto the international agenda all of a sudden and whether it had anything to do with Sudan's burgeoning oil industry and Darfur's oil, copper and uranium wealth...

Some people say that the International Community should 'force' the parties - and particularly the armed rebels to trade in guns for policies, reach a peace deal and give the people back their livelihoods...


At 5:22 PM, Blogger Egypeter said...

My Sudanese friend:

We both seek the EXACT same thing for our respective countries.

Full and equal citizinship rights for ALL people regardless of religion, race, and gender.

Nice to hear from you again.

At 5:23 PM, Blogger Egypeter said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


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