Darfur Refugee Camp Attacked By Joint Sudanese & Janjaweed Forces
March 8, 2009
Damanga Coalition for Freedom and Democracy is very disturbed to report that our supporters in Darfur informed us that a major refugee camp was attacked by joint Janajaweed and Sudanese forces on the same day that the ICC issued the arrest warrant against Omar Al-bashir.
On March 4, 2009, dozens of Sudanese Forces including Janjaweed Arab Militias ravaged the refugee camp of "Riyadh" and killed 11 refugees following a huge demonstration that formulated after refugees received news regarding the ICC arrest warrant. Riyadh is the only refugee camp in Darfur that has conducted an open demonstration to show their support of the ICC's decision.
After shouts of "Welcome welcome ICC, WELCOME WELCOME JUSTICE against al-bashir and Ahamad Haroun and Salih Kusheeb," the Sudanese and Janjaweed soldiers shot down additional refugees and 3 others were burnt alive in the camp.
Moreover, Damanga has received confirmation that more than 380 houses and shelters of Riyadh camp were burnt to ashes that same day. Unfortunately, this development was not reported immediately due to the fact that Al-bashir had threatened the aid workers to leave the country. More than 13 of the major aid organizations supporting the Darfuri refugees have been forced to stop working thus creating more devastation within the region: now more than 4 million Darfuris face the threat of starvation,disease, and death as a result of this new, vulnerable situation.
Riyadh refugee camp is located in north west Al-geneina City which is the capitol of Darmassaleit, a Western Darfur state. Riyadh camp is a mere 2 miles from the outskirts of the city. There has not been any more news regarding the injured refugees from the attacks. Damanga has been working closely and diligently to obtain more news regarding the attacks, but is currently facing struggles with the Sudanese government security who has been restricting and blocking all the telephones and communication systems coming in and out of the country.
Damanga Coalition for Freedom and Democracy strongly condemns these new developments in Darfur. Furthermore, Damanga urges the UNSC, The United States & the Obama Administration, and the European Union to commit their moral responsibility to this situation and to act quickly to contain these attacks. We ask the UN to immediately send the full 26,000 peace keepers to Darfur as promised. We also ask the UN and the International community to hold the Chinese government accountable for its support of Al-Bashir and those that have committed the genocide in Darfur. We also ask the UNSC to consider these new attacks on refugees to be added to the list of genocide war crimes & crimes against humanity.
Furthermore, Damanga extremely urges the UN to apply the no fly zone in Darfur and to help NGO's and all aid organizations to resume their work with Darfuri refugees all over the region as soon as possible.
The UN should further disarm the Janjaweed Arab militia and the allies of Sudan government as well as immediately arrest Omar Al-bashir, Ahmad Haroun, and Ali Kusheeb before they commit any more killings.
Finally, the UN and the international community must apply sanctions targeting the leaders of the government and militias, apply embargo and trade sanctions against China and other partners of the Sudanese government, stop importing weapons, aircraft, helicopters and jets from China and Russia to Sudan, and freeze the assetts of all the genocide orchestrator's, and their family members as well, in national banks abroad.
It is only then that the genocide in Darfur can be stopped once and for all.