Khartoum says Germany treating Sudan unfairly

28th July 2004, Comments 0 comments

28 July 2004, NAIROBI - Sudanese Foreign Minister Mustafa Osman Ismail said his country has been unfairly condemned for the humanitarian crisis unfolding along Sudan's western border, singling out Germany for its "hostile attitude" to Khartoum and rejecting British "foreign intervention".

28 July 2004

NAIROBI - Sudanese Foreign Minister Mustafa Osman Ismail said his country has been unfairly condemned for the humanitarian crisis unfolding along Sudan's western border, singling out Germany for its "hostile attitude" to Khartoum and rejecting British "foreign intervention".

In a telephone interview Tuesday with Deutsche Presse-Agentur, Ismail said Germany should not forget that "it's the rebels that started the war in Darfur".

"The Germans put pressure only on one side," the minister complained, adding: "I can't understand why they support the rebels in Darfur".

Following Britain's and Germany's call for United Nations sanctions against Sudan, the Sudanese government called on representatives of the two countries' embassies and formally complained that they were threatening Sudan's national security.

Ismail strongly rejected any suggestions of deploying British troops in his country. "Sudan is an independent country," he said, adding: "We don't want foreign intervention."

"If the British think about sending troops they should bring it in front of our government, but not via a media campaign," he declared.

However, the minister refused to respond to a query whether Sudan would support deployment of UN troops.

"The first to react to the crisis is the Sudanese army," he said.

He reiterated that his government was planning as soon as possible to disarm the Arab Janjaweed militias which are blamed for marauding in Darfur region with a campaign of systematic violence and rape against black African farmers.

Ismail pointed out that the African Union had already sent observers to the region: "There are more than 100 AU observers in Darfur," he said.

The minister also rejected complaints by numerous journalists that the Sudanese government was trying to control access to the region by withholding or delaying permits for the media workers.

"Darfur is open", he said. "There are more than 800 aid workers and 30 to 40 media representatives of regional, national and international level" in the region, he said.

The conflict between the Janjaweed militias and black African tribes in Darfur has forced more than 1 million people to flee their homes. The UN estimated that 50,000 have been killed and more than 100,000 have taken refuge in neighbouring Chad.

DPA

Subject: German news

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