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Amnesty NZ Says Attacks On Darfur Camps Must Stop

Sudan: Attacks on camps for the displaced must stop immediately

Amnesty International today called for an immediate halt to attacks by Sudanese security forces on displaced persons' camps in Darfur. The latest assault on residents at the El-Geer camp near Nyala is the fourth time over the past ten days that displaced persons' camps have been attacked.

"This attack shows a callous disregard on the part of the Government of Sudan for its most basic obligations under humanitarian and human rights law," said Amnesty's NZ director, Ced Simpson.

The attacks come just a day after Sudan's government signed humanitarian and security agreements with armed opposition groups in the Nigerian capital of Abuja.

Police fired tear gas, assaulted residents and bulldozed shelters in El-Geer camp, ignoring the protests of representatives of the United Nations, the African Union and international aid agencies who were present during the attack. Journalists also came under fire and the deputy chief of the camp was beaten up and arrested.

The assault comes a week before the UN Security Council is due to meet in Nairobi, Kenya, to discuss crises in the region and at a time when the UN Commission of Inquiry is visiting the area.

"The attacks show how urgent it is for the international community to take firm measures at next week's UN Security Council meeting to ensure the security of civilians in Darfur and the protection of their human rights," Mr Simpson said.

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