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Sudan: Global Day of Action for Darfur

17th September 2006

Sudan: Global Day of Action for Darfur

Activists around the world are taking action for the Global Day for Darfur on Sunday, 17 September, calling for UN peacekeepers to be sent to the troubled region of Darfur as soon as possible.

Activities will be held in a large number of locations around the world, ranging from New Zealand, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, and Jordan to Mali, Morocco, Nigeria, South Korea, Mongolia, the US and the UK.

The people of Darfur are effectively being held hostage to the deadlock between the UN, the African Union and the Sudanese government - in defiance of international revulsion at the suffering of ordinary Darfuris, Amnesty International said today.

Massive forced displacements and other human rights violations by Sudanese armed forces, Janjawid militias and other forces have deepened the humanitarian crisis in Darfur, where over 285,000 people have already been killed by the conflict.

Despite a UN resolution last month deciding on the deployment of UN peacekeepers to Darfur, the Sudanese government continues to refuse such a deployment and has launched a new offensive in the region. Over 2 million people have been displaced from their homes and at least 650,000 are now being denied aid.

"Every day we are receiving more and more names of civilians killed," said Irene Khan, Secretary General of Amnesty International. "If the Sudanese government continues to refuse UN peacekeepers, the Security Council should immediately impose targeted sanctions against Sudanese officials."

The Sudanese government appears to have been emboldened by the tacit support it received from Russia, China and Qatar, the three members of the UN Security Council who abstained from voting for Resolution 1706, on 31 August 2006, establishing UN peacekeepers for Darfur.

"As part of this Global Day of Action for Darfur, we are taking a strong message directly to the Russian and Chinese governments that they should work harder to get Sudan's consent for a UN peacekeeping force" said Gary Reese, Campaigns Manager for Amnesty International New Zealand.

What: A statement, reports, video and photographs detailing the crisis in Darfur and neighbouring Chad will be delivered to the Chinese and Russian Embassies.
71 victims from the town of Korma will be profiled, with 71 bloodied crosses placed outside the Embassies to mark each death that could have been saved by UN peacekeepers.

When: 11am, Monday, 18 September 2006

Where: Embassy of the People's Republic of China, 2-6 Glenmore St, Wellington
To be followed by - Embassy of the Russian Federation, 57 Messines Road, Karori


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