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05 July 2006

Responsibility to Protect Engaging Civil Society

Web: www.responsibilitytoprotect.org

Email: [email protected]...



In this issue:

Articles on R2P in the News, Darfur, AU Summit, Timor-Leste, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Somalia.



List of Articles:



I. R2P in the News

1. INTERNALTIONAL ORDER, LEGALLY



II. Darfur

1. REBELS LAUNCH RAID OUTSIDE DARFUR

2. BUSH SURPRISE AT SUDAN BRIEFING

3. POLITICAL, PEACEKEEPING ACTION NEEDED TO SEIZE THE MOMENT IN DARFUR: UN OFFICIAL

4. DARFUR PEACEKEEPING ROW DIVIDES SUDAN UNITY GOVERNMENT

5. SECURITY COUNCIL MUST PUSH KHARTOUM TO ACCEPT U.N. FORCE

6. SUDAN LIFTS BAN ON DARFUR MISSION

7. SUDAN SUSPENDS UN MISSION IN DARFUR



III. AU Summit

1. DARFUR SET TO DOMINATE AFRICAN LEADERS BI-ANNUAL SUMMIT

2. ANNAN HOLDS SEPARATE TALKS WITH LEADERS OF CHAD, SUDAN ZIMBABWE, AND COTE D IVOIRE

3. SUDAN AND ZIMBABWE OVERSHADOW AU SUMMIT



IV. Updates from Around the World

1. UN INQUIRY INTO EAST TIMOR

2. VIOLENCE IN SRI LANKA DISPLACES 600,000 PEOPLE: REPORT

3. MALAYSIA HOSTS INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON HUMAN SECURITY

4. UN TEAM MEETS SOMALIAS ISLAMISTS





I. R2P in the News
1. INTERNALTIONAL ORDER, LEGALLY
Washington Times
By Per Stig Moller and Frank-Walter Steinmeier
27 June 2006
()the debate about the role of international law has re-emerged in the context of recent, profound political changes.
()Over recent years, the international community has steadily moved to reassess what is at the core of State sovereignty. Do States have a responsibility -- as sovereignty's "other side of the medal" -- to act against massive abuses and catastrophes? Last September, leaders from around the world agreed to empower the Security Council to decide to intervene, as a last resort, if a State is unable or unwilling to protect its inhabitants. This has become known as the concept of the "responsibility to protect." We support it and welcome that the Council has recently traveled to Sudan and neighboring countries, underlining its determination to stop the suffering in Darfur and thereby give credence to the "responsibility to protect."

But the Council's involvement with international law goes deeper. A few examples:
When the Council decides on the mandates of peacekeeping operations, the inclusion of rule-of-law components has become a standard element. The Council has also addressed the issues of protection of children and civilians in armed conflict.
The Council plays a role in the peaceful settlement of disputes about borders, territorial integrity and sovereignty of States.
The Council has established rules (and a corresponding monitoring mechanism) to guide States in their efforts to counter terrorism and to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
The Council can, and indeed does, impose sanctions, for example to fight terrorism or to curb the power of warlords. The Council has stated that the fight against terrorism must take place within the framework of international law, in particular international human rights, refugee and humanitarian law; it is now approaching the question how to refine its sanctions procedures in order to enhance their credibility and efficiency.
Also, one of the central issues currently before the Council -- Iran -- has at its core the question of that country's rights and obligations under the Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Denmark and Germany are committed to the promotion of peace, security and well-being through an effective multilateral system. We say this as Europeans and as representatives of two neighboring nations. Our part of the world has been ravaged by wars for centuries. We have learned from the past, creating, as a common European endeavor, our own "international Rechtsstaat." Our objective remains the development of a stronger international society, well-functioning international institutions and a rule-based international order.

Per Stig Moller is Denmark's minister for foreign affairs. Frank-Walter Steinmeier is Germany's federal foreign minister.

Full text: http://www.washtimes.com/commentary/20060626-094410-8735r.htm



II. Darfur



1. REBELS LAUNCH RAID OUTSIDE DARFUR

BBC News

4 July 2006



Rebels from the Sudanese region of Darfur have carried out an attack outside the region, on a town about 400km (250 miles) from Khartoum.



Government aircraft have been sent to Hamrat al-Sheikh, where fighting is continuing, the army says. A local official said 12 people had died.



A BBC correspondent in Khartoum says the raid shows that the Darfur conflict could spread to other areas of Sudan.



The raid was carried out by rebel groups which did not sign a peace deal.



Governor of North Kordofan state Faisal Hassan Ibrahim said that eight policemen, two security men and two women were killed in the fighting in Hamrat al-Sheikh, during which several public buildings were destroyed, reports the AFP news agency.



The rebels attacked the town with 50 trucks armed with heavy weapons, he said.



Collapsing deal



After refusing to sign the accord in May, rebels from the Justice and Equality Movement, (Jem) and breakaway factions of the Sudan Liberation Army formed an alliance.



But the BBC's Jonah Fisher in Khartoum says the deal has failed to win the support of people in Darfur and fighting has continued.



Head of the United Nations mission in Sudan Jan Pronk has warned the deal may collapse without further concessions.



But on Monday, Foreign Minister Lam Akol, said the deal could not be changed.



"This is a peace agreement, it can only be amended according to the articles therein," he said.



"Nobody has the power to amend it and least of all, is Pronk."



At least 200,000 people have been killed and two million forced from their homes in Darfur's three-year conflict..()



Full text: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/5144154.stm





2. DARFUR PEACEKEEPING ROW DIVIDES SUDAN UNITY GOVERNMENT

All Africa.com

3 July 2006



Veteran Sudanese President Omar al-Beshir's opposition to the deployment of UN peacekeepers to the devastated western region of Darfur has deeply divided a national unity government formed after a landmark peace deal last year.



First Vice President Salva Kiir, who heads the Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM)sharply distanced himself from Beshir by calling on the Security Council to deploy the UN force.



()"The position of the SPLM is obvious and has no problem with the deployment of international forces in Darfur," Kiir told a rally in the main southern city of Juba Friday.



"We have previously expressed our agreement to the deployment of those forces in accordance with the (2005) agreement," he said, referring to an existing UN force deployed in the south under that deal.



"We do not see any problem in their presence in Darfur, as, since entering south Sudan, they have not committed any violation and they have remained committed to all provisions of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.



"We have notified the (ruling) National Congress of our agreement," he added in reference to the president's northern, Arab-dominated ruling party.



Under the 2005 accord, Beshir's ruling party shares power in Khartoum with the former rebels and other smaller factions on the basis of a formula set out in the deal.



But the presidenthas so far strongly resisted Western plans for a NATO-backed UN force to deploy to Darfur.



()"Yes, as Sudanese, we are for the sovereignty of the country," said Abdel Karim al-Sheikh, envoy of the mainstream faction of the rebel Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM).



"But we support the deployment of international forces to help implement the Darfur peace agreement provisions related to protecting civilians," he told the Khartoum daily Akhbar al-Youm.()



Full text:


He met the president in the Oval Office with three other recipients of the National Endowment for Democracy award.



Last year, Sudan emerged from a 21-year war between the north and south.



After two years of bargaining the Khartoum government and southern rebels signed a comprehensive peace deal in January 2005, that should provide a high degree of autonomy for the south.()



Full text:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/africa/5128166.stm





4. POLITICAL, PEACEKEEPING ACTION NEEDED TO SEIZE THE MOMENT IN DARFUR; UN OFFICIAL

UN News Centre

27 June 2006



African peacekeeping must immediately be bolstered in anticipation of a ubstantial United Nations force and dialogue must start quickly between the local parties, the world bodys top peacekeeping official said today.



he situation in Darfur remains very fragile there is an agreement and thats a major achievement but its an agreement that opens a window, and thats a window that needs to be seized, Jean-Marie Guhenno, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations told the press after briefing the Security Council on the results of his recent assessment mission to Sudan.()



In view of the fragility of the situation, he said that t would be wise to have, by January 2007, a substantial UN force on the ground, perhaps consisting of some three brigades of three to five battalions each.()



The big question still remains whether the Sudanese Government in Khartoum, which has so far balked at the deployment of a UN peacekeeping mission, will agree to it, Mr. Guhenno said.



Addressing that issue in a separate press encounter, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said he, along with African officials, would be engaging Sudanese President Omer Hassan Al-Bashir on the matter at a meeting sponsored by the African Union (AU) on 1 July.



He said he had also appealed to Security Council members to bring their collective and individual pressure to bear not just on the Sudanese Government to support the deployment, but also on the rebels that are outside the agreement to sign it, and on all parties to implement the pact in good faith.()



Full text: http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=19020&Cr=sudan&Cr1







5. SECURITY COUNCIL MUST PUSH KHARTOUM TO ACCEPT U.N. FORCE

Human Rights Watch

28 June 2006



The U.N. Security Council and its members must secure Sudanese government consent to urgently deploy a U.N. force to protect civilians in Darfur, Human Rights Watch said today. Sudanese President Omar El Bashir has repeatedly rejected the request - made in the last two months by the Security Council, the African Union (AU) and the Arab League - that Khartoum consent to a U.N. mission in Darfur.

"The Security Council must now back its demands with action against high Sudanese officials if they continue to block a U.N. force for Darfur," said Peter Takirambudde, Africa director at Human Rights Watch. "Security Council members have a duty to prevent new war crimes and 'ethnic cleansing,' and to protect civilians in Darfur."()

"The Security Council's reluctance to take on the Sudanese government has cost the lives of more people in Darfur," said Takirambudde. "Any further delay will simply raise the death toll. A U.N. mission must have a mandate to use all necessary measures to protect civilians."

The Security Council's June 22 report of its mission to Sudan and Chad sets forth a seven-step process toward full U.N. operational capacity in Darfur. It highlights the need for a broader AMIS mandate and greater funding to provide maximum security while the full transition to U.N. forces is being completed - potentially by January 2007.()

"If Khartoum knows that Russia and China will no longer provide it with a diplomatic shield, Bashir's objections to U.N. forces in Darfur will melt away," said Takirambudde,

But the Security Council must be ready to apply further sanctions against Khartoum, and extend the arms embargo it enacted on arms supplies to Darfur to the whole of Sudan, Human Rights Watch said.()

Full text: http://www.hrw.org/english/docs/2006/06/28/sudan13657.htm



6. SUDAN LIFTS BAN ON UN DARFUR MISSION

Al-Jazeera

From: Reuters

26 June 2006



Sudan has lifted a ban it imposed on Sunday on a UN mission working in the violent western Darfur region.



Stephane Dujarric, a UN spokesman said on Monday: "The Sudanese Government decided, effective today, to reverse its decision to suspend UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) activities in Darfur."()



Sudan suspended the UN operations, excluding the work of the World Food Programme and the UN Children's Fund, because it said the world body used a helicopter to move Suleiman Adam Jamous, a rebel leader who opposes a recent peace deal.()



Dujarric and other UN spokesmen declined to comment on whether the United Nations had moved Jamous in a helicopter.



Jamous was the humanitarian coordinator for the main rebel Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) before it split in November last year. He was the main contact for the more than 14,000 aid workers in the region.



Full text: http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/4DC22CB1-931C-4F87-8691-0FA6702D526E.htm



7. SUDAN SUSPENDS UN MISSION IN DARFUR

Al-Jazeera

From: Reuters

25 June 2006



Sudan has suspended the work of a UN mission in Darfur after accusing the world body of transporting a rebel leader who opposes a recent peace deal.()

He said the ban, which excludes two bodies affiliated to the UN mission - the World Food Programme and Unicef, the UN children's agency - was imposed because a UN helicopter had moved Suleiman Adam Jamous, who rejects a peace deal signed on May 5.



Full text: http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/9805BF07-9DD3-446E-8BF4-BFA402681263.htm





III. AU Summit



1. DARFUR SET TO DOMINATE AFRICAN LEADERS BI-ANNUAL SUMMIT

Agence France Presse

Retrieved from Khaleej Times

1 July 2006



Fifty three African leaders start meeting in Gambia Saturday to tackle the crises bedevilling the continent, with Sudan's Darfur region at the top of the agenda.



()Sudanese President Omar El Beshir has rejected an offer of UN peacekeeping troops taking over from the poorly equipped 7,000 strong African force in Darfur.



The African Union is due to pull out, by September 31, its peacekeeping force which has since January been living off donations, according to officials.



But Sudanese leader Hassan Omar al Bashir appeared unpertubed by the looming pull-out saying he could easily deploy Sudanese peacekeepers in Darfur.



Early in the week foreign ministers warned they would consider imposing sanctions on anyone who undermined the peace agreement on Darfur signed in Abuja in May.



()President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela and Mahmoud Ahmedinejad of Iran are in the country as AU summit guests.



()Progress in upcoming elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), to crown a three year transition process, will be examined while the delayed and fragile peace process in Ivory Coast will also be formally brought to the attention of heads of states.



Full text: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticleNew.asp?xfile=data/theworld/2006/July/theworld_July7.xml§ion=theworld



2. ANNAN HOLDS SEPARATE TALKS WITH LEADER OF CHAD, SUDAN, ZIMBABWE, AND COTE DIVOIRE

From: UN News Service

2 July 2006



In the margins of the African Union (AU) Summit meeting being held in Banjul, Gambia, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today discussed four flashpoints on the continent, Sudan, Chad, Zimbabwe and Cte d'Ivoire, with the respective leaders of each country.



In talks with Sudanese President Omar al Bashir, the Secretary-General said they agreed on the need to immediately strengthen the AU mission in Darfur (AMIS) and to consolidate the peace accord in that region



For the 5 May agreement to work, hose parties who have not yet signed must come on board, Mr. Annan said, adding that he personally ontinued to press for the eventual deployment of a UN force in Darfur. ()



Mr. Annan also met with Chad's President, Idriss Deby. Responding to press questions, he voiced concern about security in camps for internally displaced persons. e do not want to those camps to become resting places for fighters, we don't want them to become recruitment place for fighters, we don't want fighters to intimidate civilians and take away their food for the men in arms and, so, we are also looking at how we can secure the camps and protect the refugees in those camps as well, he said.



Meeting with President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe where the Government's massive demolition of homes has provoked international concern the Secretary-General said the long-serving leader dvised me that the former Tanzanian President, Ben Mkapa, had been appointed as a mediator and added: e both agreed that he should be given the time and space to do his work.r


On Cte d'Ivoire, a country divided between a rebel-held north and government-controlled south, the Secretary-General held talks with the President, Laurent Gbagbo, and a number of concerned regional leaders. Those meetings are slated to continue later this week in Abidjan.



Asked about elections scheduled for October, Mr. Annan said ideally, Cte d'Ivoire should adhere to that timetable. ut, for technical reasons, if there has to be any delay, I hope it will be a very, very brief one and there must be elections, in any event, by the end of the year, he stressed.



The Secretary-General's official trip will continue to a number of countries in the region, starting with Sierra Leone.



Full text: http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=19074&Cr=African&Cr1=Union



3. SUDAN AND ZIMBABWE OVERSHADOW AU SUMMIT

Business Day

Jonathan Katzenellenbogen

01 July 2006



In the Gambian capital of Banjul, a number of key African leaders and United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Kofi Annan will be trying to convince Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir to allow the AU's mission in the Darfur region of Sudan to be converted into a UN peacekeeping mission.



al-Bashir has been resisting any such attempt to "blue-helmet" the AU's mission in Darfur, crying "colonialism and imperialism" almost every time the matter is raised.



SA has supported such a conversion but without al-Bashir's approval not much can be done.



The matter is becoming increasingly urgent as the AU's mission in Sudan is running out of money to operate and no external donors are likely to come up with additional funding unless the conversion takes place.



Having so vehemently opposed the conversion, al-Bashir is unlikely to endorse such a move and it is unclear what guarantees he can be given about issues that concern him most.



One of these concerns is that if the UN operates the mission in the Sudan, there is a possibility of members of both the government and the Janjaweed militia being prosecuted before the International Criminal Court for their involvement in human rights atrocities.



The only possible guarantee al-Bashir could be given is that most or all of the troops in the mission will remain African, says Jakkie Cilliers, executive director of the Institute for Security Studies.



"Eventually Khartoum will have to give way, the AU does not have the resources," says Cilliers.



A UN Security Council decision is required for the conversion, but China and Russia, two of the five permanent members with veto rights, have indicated they may veto any resolution that does not have Sudan's agreement.



President Thabo Mbeki is likely to be part of any talks in Banjul to pave the way for the possible involvement of the UN.()



Full text: http://allafrica.com/stories/200607010176.html





IV. Updates from Around the World



1. UN INQUIRY INTO EAST TIMOR

The Australian

By Correspondents in Lisbon

05 July 06
A UNITED Nations-mandated inquiry into civil unrest in East Timor will be completed by the first week of October, the inquiry commission's chairman told Portuguese news agency Lusa on Tuesday.

"Having a deadline is important, otherwise it would be an ingredient for despair," Brazilian human rights expert Paulo Sergio Pinheiro told the agency in Geneva.

The commission, created last week by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan at the request of the government of East Timor, will begin its work in Dili later this month.

It will centre its investigations on the clashes between rival security force factions on April 28- 29 and May 23-25 that sparked weeks of bloody communal gang violence in the former Portuguese colony and forced the resignation of Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri last month.

The commission "will try to reconstruct the events in the most precise manner possible and attempt to point out responsibilities," said Mr Pinheiro. ()

Full text: http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,20867,19690248-1702,00.html



2. VIOLENCE IN SRI LANKA DISPLACES 600,000 PEOPLE: REPORT

United Press International

03 JULY 06



Sri Lanka-Violence Amnesty International has blamed the Tamil Tigers, Sri Lankan government and other armed groups for the continued violence in Sri Lanka in which around 600,000 people have been displaced. ()



The increasing violence in Sri Lanka is creating new waves of displaced people and adding to the fear and insecurity felt by the hundreds of thousands of people who have already been forced out of their homes by the conflict and the tsunami, said a TamilNet report quoting Amnesty International, the London-based human rights group.



"The state's failure to provide adequate security and to ensure that attacks against civilians are prosecuted has resulted in widespread fear and panic," said Purna Sen, Asia-Pacific director of Amnesty International. ()



On June 17, one woman was killed and 44 others injured when grenades were lobbed into a church in the northern village of Pesalai , where thousands of people had sought refuge from fighting between the Tamil Tigers and government forces. ()



A total of 39,883 people have been displaced in the north and east of Sri Lanka since April 7, 2006, according to UN figures.



A report released last week by Amnesty International also describes how the people, who have already been displaced several times, are being forced to move yet again as insecurity increases.



"It is the government's responsibility to protect the rights of these displaced people, and numbering over half a million, they make up a shockingly large constituency.

The worsening security situation makes it imperative for the government to provide them with increased protection," said Purna Sen.



Fighting between government forces, the Tamil Tiger rebels and other armed groups has been intensifying for the last six months with more than 700 people killed this year alone, according to the Sri Lankan Monitoring Mission.



Civilians face killings, abductions and "disappearances.



"Children are being recruited as soldiers.



Displaced people are particularly vulnerable to abuses because they lack the support networks of their communities and local authorities.



In separate incidents in May, a Norwegian Refugee Council employee was shot dead and three NGO offices were hit by synchronized grenade attacks.()



More than 639,400 people are estimated to remain displaced in Sri Lanka.



According to latest UN figures, 314,378 people have been displaced by the conflict.



The increasing violence is forcing many Sri Lankans to flee the country altogether -- more than 2,800 people have sought international protection in India so far this year, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.



Full text: http://upi.com/Arabia2000/view.php?StoryID=20060703-833611-4369-r



3. MALAYSIA HOSTS INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON HUMAN SECURITY

Financial Times Information Limited

04 July 2006



Rising incidents of genocide, crimes against humanity and massive violations of human rights require better responses of the global community, but with due regard for national sovereignty.



Foreign Affairs Minister Syed Hamid Albar said humanitarian intervention has become necessary with increased human security concerns, more so since globalisation has made such issues borderless.



While advocating improved responses to human security, Malaysia upholds the principle of non-interference.



"A regime's systematic violation of (human) rights does not constitute grounds for the violation of national sovereignty through invasion or destabilisation."



He said human intervention should be balanced with territorial sovereignty in that each state should respects laws and political decisions of others.



"Those actions must be in accordance with the (United Nations) Charter principle of respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states."

Open to abuse



Syed Hamid pointed out the fear that human security could be used as an excuse to legitimise the overuse of humanitarian intervention and that this could lead to potential abuse.



"A concept as broad as that of responsibility to protect is subjective and open to abuse, in particular given the current penchant of the major powers to assert their power rather than champion principles."



"There remain a whole range of questions - legal, moral, operational and political - constituting the debate around humanitarian intervention and the responsibility to protect.



"Our involvement must be premised on the basis of consultations and cooperation through the United Nations, taking into principles of international law."



In the case of Malaysia, he cited development - not intervention - as the key to resolving issues linked to human security. ()



[Link to full text unavailable]





4. UN TEAM MEET SOMALIAS ISLAMISTS

BBC News

3 July 2006





A two-member United Nations security team has met Islamist leaders in the Somali capital, Mogadishu.



It is the UN's first contact with Mogadishu's new rulers since they took over from the warlords a month ago.



Islamist fighters are trying to disarm Abdi Awale Qeydiid, the last of the warlords they defeated in Mogadishu, some 30km from the city.()



Regional diplomats are heading for Somalia on Monday for talks with the government in their base of Baidoa, 200km form Mogadishu.



It was not clear whether the team from East Africa's Igad body and the African Union will also travel to Mogadishu for talks with the Union of Islamic Courts, which controls much of southern Somalia.



On Sunday, Mr Ahmed pointedly said that any foreigners planning on going to the capital would need the Islamists' approval.()



The government of President Abdullahi Yusuf wants foreign peacekeepers to be deployed - an idea fiercely rejected by the Union of Islamic Courts.()



He urged Somalis to unite against "the enemy number one of the Somali people", apparently referring to Ethiopia.()



Full text: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/africa/5140182.stm





--Listserv compiled by Shawn Pelsinger.
 

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