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UN: 300,000 have fled Darfur fighting this year

UN: 300,000 have fled Darfur fighting this year

About 300,000 people have fled fighting throughout Sudan's rebellious province of Darfur in the first five months of this year, more than the total number of people displaced there in the last two years put together, the U.N.'s top humanitarian official said Thursday.
U.N. Humanitarian chief Valerie Amos traveled to the area and said in Khartoum that with 1.4 million people still living in camps for displaced people, and a majority of people in Darfur lacking basic necessities, the situation was "extremely worrying."
"We cannot let Darfur slip off the radar screen of the international community," she said.
Amos said that hundreds of thousands of children have been born in camps and "have never known life outside."
Sudan's U.N. Ambassador Daffa-Alla Elhag Ali Osman said in New York that the displacement "takes place in a spontaneous manner. When the rebels attack an area, definitely that causes displacement, but immediately after the army regains those localities, they return."
Darfur has been gripped by bloodshed since 2003 when rebels took up arms against the government in Khartoum. Fighting also erupts between tribes.
Sudan's leader Omar al-Bashir is accused of genocide and war crimes by the International Criminal Court for attacks in Darfur.
Osman had been attending a Security Council briefing on issues between Sudan and South Sudan, including an interruption in oil flow this week in the pipeline that links the South Sudan oil field with Sudan's port on the Red Sea.
Osman said Edmond Mulet, the U.N. assistant secretary-general for peacekeeping, had assured the council that the pipeline shutdown was not a political ploy, but was due to a technical glitch.
"There was a high percentage of water in the crude oil coming from the South" sometimes exceeding 40 percent, which can damage pipeline stations with corrosion. "That is why the operators decided to stop the flow, it was not the government of Sudan," Osman said.
South Sudan must export all its oil through pipelines owned by Sudan. South Sudan resumed oil production in April this year, 16 months after a shutdown caused by disagreements with Sudan over oil transit fees.


Updated : 2020-12-01 20:14 GMT+08:00