Friday, March 19, 2004

Sudan: UN official raises spectre of Rwanda

"We have a vicious war going on which is leading to the violation of human rights on a scale comparable to historic situations, increasingly for example Rwanda," Mukesh Kapila, U.N. humanitarian coordinator for Sudan, told reporters.

... "It's more than a conflict, it's an organized attempt to do away with one set of people," Kapila said, adding that aid workers on the ground had reported a systematic scorched-earth policy. (link)
Pro-government Arab militias are attacking non-Arab people -- Fur, Massaleit, Zaghawa and other ethnic groups.

Last week, there was a report that these militias attacked over a hundred villages, forcing 70,000 people to flee their homes.

UPDATE I took those first quotes from a Reuters story. The AFP story carries similar quotes but plays them a bit differently ....
Systematic rape, a "scorched earth policy" and other attacks on civilians, he said, were "tantamount to war crimes."

Kapila said such attacks had taken place on "a scale comparable to historical situations, including Rwanda" in 1994 where a genocide claimed up to a million lives.

"The only difference between Rwanda and Darfur is the numbers involved of dead, tortured and raped," he said.

"Some people are using the term ethnic cleansing. I say that was not far off the mark," he said. (link)