Impunity for criminal acts in Darfur camps must stop – UN official

19 January 2012

The chief of the joint United Nations-African Union operation in Darfur (UNAMID) stressed today his commitment to end impunity for criminal acts in displacement camps during a meeting with internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the state of North Darfur.

“I have been taking up the issue of impunity with high-level officials of the Government of the Sudan,” Ibrahim Gambari told representatives of the Kassab and Fataborno IDP camp in the town of Kutum.

“Where the people who are engaged in criminal acts are known, they must be brought to justice. As a result of our pressure, now they [the Sudanese Government] have appointed a special court and a special prosecutor [for Darfur],” he said.

During the meeting, some women told the AU-UN envoy that rapes in and around the camp had increased and requested more security. Mr. Gambari vowed to take up the concern with the local authorities.

He also reaffirmed UNAMID’s commitment to implement its core mandate and support the peace process in the region. “We have to bring this conflict to an end. The people of Darfur have suffered too long and too deeply,” he said.

During his visit to the region, Mr. Gambari met with UNAMID troops from South Africa stationed in the area and was briefed on the operational activities and the challenges facing the mission. He stressed that the troops should double their efforts by increasing the number of patrols, including night patrols in the area.

Mr. Gambari also held talks with the Commissioner of the Kutum Locality, Mohammed Kamaldin El Sayed Abu Shouk, who expressed his appreciation to UNAMID, and noted the need to implement more developmental projects in the area. The envoy assured the Commissioner that UNAMID will continue to work for the people of Kutum and Darfur.


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