Accessibility links

JEM Rebel Group Blames Khartoum for Violence in Darfur

  • Peter Clottey

Women and children in the Intifada Camp for internally displaced persons in Darfur, Sudan.

Women and children in the Intifada Camp for internally displaced persons in Darfur, Sudan.

The spokesman for the Darfur-based Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) told VOA his insurgent group is not to blame for the deteriorating security situation the United Nations says has led to the deaths of 400 unarmed civilians in May.

Ahmed Hussein Adam warned that, until President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir’s government changes its “warmongering” attitude, there would be no resolution of the ongoing crisis in the country’s restive Darfur region.

“We are sharing the concern of the international community…the Security Council, as well as the Secretary-General of the United Nations, their concern about the deteriorating humanitarian situation and security situation in Darfur. Because those who are dying and those who are suffering are our people and all of us have members of their family in IDP (Internally Displaced Persons) camps or refugee camps,” he said.

Describing the Darfur situation as unacceptable, the U.S ambassador to the United Nations expressed concern about the escalating crisis and called for its effective resolution. Ambassador Susan Rice described the escalating situation in Darfur as “unacceptable and needs to be effectively addressed.”

Her comments came after U.N Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon presented a report to the Security Council about the worsening security situation in western Sudan.

JEM’s spokesman Adam blames President Bashir’s government for the ongoing conflict.

“The question is, ‘Who is responsible?’ I don’t think that JEM is responsible for the ongoing violence. The regime in Khartoum is responsible and the international community actually failed to put any pressure on them to stop their (military) campaign against our people on the ground,” Adam said.

The U.N chief called on both the government and JEM, Darfur’s largest rebel group, to stop the ongoing conflict. He also urged them to return to the negotiating table to find a lasting solution to the Darfur crisis.

JEM recently pulled out of the peace talks with the Sudanese government in Doha, Qatar after accusing the national army of attacking its positions.

The U.N chief said JEM’s withdrawal from the peace talks significantly undermined efforts to resolve the problems in Darfur.

But, the rebel spokesman said the government does not seem to be interested in finding a solution to the crisis.

“We went to Doha in good faith with the determination to achieve peace and signed a framework agreement…which includes the declaration of ceasefire. But, the regime used that agreement to calm the situation to run the (last) elections and, immediately after the campaign, they started the (military onslaught) campaign,” he said.

Adam also called on the international community to put more pressure on President Bashir’s government to find a political solution to the Darfur crisis.