The UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, has visited Rwanda on Wednesday to dissuade the country from withdrawing its peacekeeping forces, in an attempt to soften tensions provokes by the UN report citing involvement of Rwandan troops in genocide crimes in the Democratic Republic of Congo in the nineties.
The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) in the United States has said that climate change is not responsible for civil wars in Africa. The report challenges previous assumptions that environmental disasters, such as drought and prolonged heat waves, had played a part in triggering unrest. Instead, it said that traditional factors-such as poverty and social tensions were often the main factors behind the outbreak of conflicts in the African continent.
Members of the Liberation and Justice Movement in Darfur said they have been attacked by what they believed to be the Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) in Western Sudan. The Deputy Chairman of Liberation and Justice Movement, Haider Falokoma Atim, told Reuters News Agency that a group of LRA rebels attacked their forces on Wednesday in Dafak area in South Darfur.
A group in Darfur said they have been attacked by what they believed to be the Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) in Western Sudan. The Deputy Chairman of Liberation and Justice Movement, Haider Falokoma Atim, told Reuters News Agency that a group of LRA rebels attacked their forces on Wednesday in Dafak area in South Darfur.
The United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) Regional Coordinator for South Sudan, David Gressly, inaugurated on Thursday the UNMIS Team Site in Kuajok town of Warrap State.
The Governor of Western Equatoria State, Joseph Bakosoro, has said that at least ten people were killed in the State by the Ugandan Lord's Resistance Army (LRA).
Travel Alert - Qu'ran Burning
The Department of State is issuing this Travel Alert to caution U.S.
citizens of the potential for anti-U.S. demonstrations in many countries
in response to stated plans by a church in Florida to burn Qur'ans on
the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
Demonstrations, some violent, have already taken place in several
countries, including and , in response to media
reports of the church's plans. The potential for further protests and
demonstrations, some of which may turn violent, remains high. We urge
you to pay attention to local reaction to the situation, and to avoid
areas where demonstrations may take place. This Travel Alert expires on
September 30, 2010.
We also remind you of the continuing threat to U.S. interests and
citizens posed by various terrorist groups, as outlined in the
Department's Worldwide Caution.
U.S. citizens living or traveling abroad are encouraged to register with
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By Ledio Cakaj, Guest blogger
Officers from the southern Sudanese Army allege the Khartoum government is supporting the Lord's Resistance Army in return for launching attacks in the south. Testimony from former Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) fighters who were recently captured near Yambio in Sudan’s Western Equatoria state indicates that a notorious LRA commander, Dominic Ongwen, recently crossed into Sudan from the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Ongwen, who was indicted by the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity and war crimes in 2005, is part of the LRA’s top leadership, second or third in command after leader Joseph Kony.
One of Ongwen’s “wives,” who was captured by the Ugandan Army in July, said that the LRA group had moved to Western Equatoria state. Unlike in the past where LRA fighters attacked southern Sudanese towns from bases in Congo, Onwgen’s group is now based in Western Equatoria state.
All fighters have new guns and uniforms and plenty of bullets, she said, adding that she did not know where the supplies came from. Former LRA fighters from groups operating in the Central African Republic (CAR) and Congo said until recently that they were using old guns and that bullets were scarce.
According to former fighters, Kony put Ongwen "in charge" of the LRA in Congo soon after Operation Lightning Thunder, the Ugandan Army offensive against LRA bases in northern Congo on Dec. 14, 2008. In the absence of Kony – who is believed to have been in Central African Republic since May 2009 – Ongwen commanded all LRA groups scattered in Haut Uele and Bas Uele districts of Congo’s Province Orientale. Groups under Ongwen are thought to have carried out the so-called Makombo massacre in Congo where LRA fighters killed over 350 civilians in December 2009.
Onwgen’s passage to Sudan in July with a reported 30 fighters is worrying.
Sudan is preparing for a very important referendum early next year, and the LRA has a proven record of destabilizing entire regions with few soldiers. Officers from the southern Sudanese Army, or SPLA, allege the Khartoum government is supporting the LRA in return for launching attacks in the South. They say Khartoum officials who do not want the South to secede from the North – an almost certain outcome of the upcoming referendum – are using the LRA to destabilize the South to create the impression the SPLA cannot provide security in the long run. President Museveni of Uganda has made similar accusations, but officials of the Omar al-Bashir government vehemently deny the links.
While it remains unclear whether Khartoum is supplying Kony’s men or not, LRA attacks in the Sudanese states of Western Equatoria and Western Bahr el Ghazal certainly intensified this summer.
It is likely that the recent spike of LRA violence in Western Equatoria is attributed to Ongwen’s group. (Attacks in Western Bahr el Ghazal are likely carried out by another LRA group from bases in neighboring Central African Republic.) On June 20, 2010, an LRA group attacked near the town of Nzara in Western Equatoria, abducting and later killing six people. After an LRA attack in the village of Ukcuo, in the state capital Yambio, a group of Arrow Boys clashed with an LRA group capturing four women. Additional LRA attacks were registered on July 30 and Aug. 2 in the towns of Ezo and Nzara respectively. Three people were killed and six were injured.
JUBA, Sudan (AP) -- Hundreds of people are marching through the streets in Southern Sudan to mark the four-month point before an independence referendum is held.
A top Southern Sudan official, Pagan Amum, said Thursday that the south already has given many concessions to northern Sudan, including a 50-50 split of oil fields that lie in the south's territory.
Amum's comments came a day after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Sudan was a "ticking time bomb."
More than 2 million people died in the North-South civil war in Sudan. It ended in 2005 with the signing of a peace accord that promised the southern referendum in 2011, which could split Africa's largest country in two.