Tuesday, June 18, 2024
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Why silence on Darfur?

There is no indication of any serious international effort to resolve the crisis. There have been only half-hearted mediation efforts, focused only on stopping the fighting in Khartoum. No progress was made on the Darfur issue, and no one showed any interest in it.

Twenty years ago, the United States was active. Today, it is absent from the scene. In fact, the first sign of a change in Washington’s indifferent attitude came when the US ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, visited refugees from Darfur in Chad earlier this month. But the United States seems to be confused about what to do in addition to imposing sanctions on the leaders of the Rapid Support Forces and supporting humanitarian efforts on the border. In a parallel way, the United Nations, which has the power to act, waits for the African Union, which does almost nothing.

In retrospect, the previous war used much more resources and political will (most of which was misplaced), but it did not succeed in ending that war. This time it will be more difficult. But there is one promising factor: the absence of any geo-strategic risks in Darfur. Therefore, all parties must have an interest in stopping the bloodshed. Countries at odds on other global issues must be able to put aside their differences and agree on measures to protect civilians, provide essential aid, and stop a growing catastrophe that is likely to surpass what Darfur suffered two decades ago.

When the UN General Assembly meets in New York this week, African leaders will meet on the sidelines to discuss the situation in Sudan.

[by Alex de Waal in Independent Arabia]

Compiled and Translated by Faizul Haque


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