Darfur Promises Not Kept:
NEW YORK – When the Darfur Peace Agreement was signed on May 5, 2006, it set out a series of milestones and deadlines to guarantee implementation of the ceasefire and establish peace. Today marks the fourth in a series of deadlines that have not been met.
According to the agreement, which was signed by the Government of Sudan and one of three main rebel factions, there were two bodies to be set up within 30 days of the agreement's effective date, which was set by the African Union as May 15, 2006. These bodies were: a Darfur Reconstruction and Development Fund and a Preparatory Committee for the Darfur-Darfur Dialogue and Consultation. There has been no announcement about the creation of either body to date. The next deadline, set for June 22, is the creation of a comprehensive plan for the disarmament of the Janjaweed by the Sudanese government.
"For there to be peace, the deadlines set by the Darfur Peace Agreement must be followed," said Maureen Byrnes, Executive Director of Human Rights First. "It is now more than a month since the agreement was signed and there has been no announcement of any action on any of the key provisions. Despite a signed peace agreement, the people of Darfur still live in a violent limbo, and their confidence in the process continues to fall."
To date, two important deadlines have passed without action:
- May 16, 2006: a Transitional Darfur Regional Authority was to be launched and a rebel leader was to nominated as Senior Assistant to the President.
- May 19, 2006: a complete ceasefire was set to begin.
"In the month since the peace agreement was signed, the people of Darfur have not seen a cessation of violence. Instead, in some parts of Darfur there’s actually been a major escalation of the violence," added Byrnes.
Human Rights First has called on the United Nations and leading members, including the United States, to exert more leadership to end the violence in Darfur. In particular, Human Rights First has called on UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan to appoint a high level diplomat of international stature to lead the international peacemaking effort. To read more about HRF’s call for a UN-appointed Special Envoy for Peace go to: http://www.humanrightsfirst.org/international_justice/darfur/index.asp
Following is a partial list of implementation deadlines as set out in the DPA; no action has been announced on any of these milestones.
May 16, 2006:
- Parties submit to African Union Mediation team lists of their own and aligned forces, force locations, and mine field locations
- Sudanese President appoints nominee of the rebel movements as Senior Assistant to the President
- Sudanese Government establishes Transitional Darfur Regional Authority
May 19, 2006:
- Comprehensive ceasefire comes into force
June 15, 2006:
- Parties establish Darfur Reconstruction and Development Fund (DRDF)
- African Union establishes Preparatory Committee for Darfur-Darfur Dialogue and Consultation
June 22, 2006:
- Sudanese Government presents comprehensive plan for disarming government-backed Janjaweed militia
- African Union Mission produces final map indicating Areas of Control, Buffer Zone, Demilitarized Zones, and Redeployment Zones
July 15, 2006:
- Darfur Rehabilitation and Resettlement Commission establishes Property Claims Committees
- Sudanese President establishes Compensation Commission
August 16, 2006:
- Sudanese Government establishes Compensation Fund
October 22, 2006:
- Sudanese Governemnt completes disarmament of Janjaweed
December 31, 2006:
- Sudanese Governement allocates $300 million to DRDF
For more information about the Darfur Peace Agreement go to http://www.humanrightsfirst.org/international_justice/darfur/index.asp or contact Jillian Gladstone at (212)845-5245 or gladstonej@HumanRightsFirst.org