Letter on the 5th Year Anniversary of Conflict in South Kordofan and Blue Nile

Published: 4 Jun 2016

The Right Honourable David Cameron MP
10 Downing Street
Saturday 4 June 2016
Dear Prime Minister,
We, as representatives of the population in the Nuba Mountains and wider international and African
civil society organisations, as shown in the logos above and signatures below, urge your government
to use its considerable influence within the international community, and in particular the United
Nations (UN), to uphold international humanitarian and human rights laws and conventions in the
besieged Sudanese regions of South Kordofan and Blue Nile. Since 2011 civilians there have endured
regular aerial bombardment by the Sudanese armed forces – only the latest and most shocking
examples of which include the well-publicised murder of six children in early May, and the very recent
targeting of a primary school, both in Heiban County, South Kordofan. As a result of the Sudanese
Armed Forces’ stated intention to wipe out the Nuba population living in non-government-controlled
areas, and the systematic bombing of farms and markets, those who have survived the five years of
constant bombardment are now facing starvation. In addition, and in direct contradiction of longestablished
international humanitarian norms, schools and hospitals have been deliberately targeted by
the Khartoum regime.
Moreover, the Sudanese government continues to defy numerous UN resolutions, and to breach
fundamental articles of its own constitution and that of the African Union (AU). It is disappointing that
the UN and the AU have reacted to these breaches with passivity and appeasement, rather than robust
We also note with alarm the increasing tendency among European Union (EU) members to disregard
Sudan’s atrocious human rights record, while seeking closer cooperation on managing migration from
the Horn of Africa. This short-sighted strategy is unlikely to deliver lasting results given the massive
refugee outflows from conflicts raging in South Kordofan, Blue Nile and Darfur, as well as the welldocumented
collusion of the Sudanese regime, police and military officials, in facilitating human
trafficking and people smuggling.
Hence, we the undersigned urge your government to:
1. Use its influence with the UN to demand the enforcement of Security Council resolutions
relating to Sudan, including those articles targeting the architects of Sudan’s continuing
2. Ask the AU and its related institutions (to which the United Kingdom gives considerable financial
support) to apply pressure on the government of Sudan and the relevant African states to push
Sudan to fulfil its commitments in international law and the AU’s founding document and
articles, including denying President Omar Bashir safe passage, in defiance of the International
Criminal Court’s warrant of arrest; and
3. Press the relevant international institutions and actors to demand unfettered access for
peacekeeping forces (in Darfur) and impartial aid organisations in areas held by both Sudanese
government and rebel forces.
To facilitate peace-building we urge your government to:
1. Press all parties to the Sudanese conflict to sign and abide by binding agreements to prevent the
use of anti-personnel mines;
2. Work with international partners to try and impose peace zones, including banning military
flights over Blue Nile and South Kordofan;
3. Ensure UK-based and listed mining companies and their supporting industries and servicing
companies discontinue operations in the areas of conflict, particularly as such extractions
contravene industry standards on indigenous lands and violate the principles of free, prior and
informed consent as specified in the 2007 UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples,
signed by the Sudanese government;
4. Support grassroots and diaspora civil society organisations as they strive to arrive at a realistic
and inclusive roadmap to peace that is credible to the people of Sudan, recognising the need for
the devolution of decision-making and distribution of national wealth to regions that have
historically suffered from marginalisation at the hands of the centralised and hegemonic
Sudanese system.
The UK has inspired countries around the globe with its commitment to human rights, free speech and
democracy. We therefore urge the UK to promote these values regarding its relations with Sudan, not
least because of the risk that Khartoum’s continuing aggression will destabilise neighbouring countries,
thus imperilling the UK’s objectives of facilitating peace and prosperity in Africa.
If you would like to discuss these matters at greater length, please contact Madeleine Crowther at
Waging Peace on maddy.crowther@wagingpeace.info and Elrayah Kakki at the Nuba Mountains Peoples
Foundation on elrayah2003@hotmail.co.uk.
Yours sincerely,
1. Ahmed H. Adam, Visiting Fellow at Institute for African Development, Cornell University
2. Ali Agab, Sudanese lawyers and human rights defender
3. Gogadi Amoga, Chair, Nuba Mountains Advocacy Group
4. Martha Boshnick, Co-chair, Darfur Interfaith Network
5. Eric Cohen, Chairperson, Investors Against Genocide
6. Mohamed Ebead, Darfur People Association of NY
7. Komi Elaiaiser, Chair, Nuba Mountains International Association
8. Lazim Suleiman El basha, Executive Director, Skills for Nuba Mountains
9. Mohaned Mustafa Elnour, human rights lawyer and Director, Justice Centre for Advocacy and Legal
10. Monica Feltz, Executive Director, International Justice Project
11. Yousif Bishara Gafour, activist
12. Abdelrahman Gasim, Face Past for Future Foundation
13. Elena Ghizzo, Voice for Nyala
14. Dr Khataza Gondwe, Africa and Middle East Team Leader, Christian Solidarity Worldwide
15. Sandra Hammel, Director, Use Your Voice to Stop Genocide RI
16. Somaia Hindosa, journalist & human rights defender
17. Kimberly Hollingsworth, President and Founder, Humanity Is Us
18. Bushra Gamar Hussein, CEO, HUDO Centre
19. Mohammed Ishag, Secretary General, Darfur Union in the UK
20. Magid Kabashi, Chair, Sudanese Marginalized Forum
21. Nubantood Khalil, Head, Nubian Language Society
22. Martina Knee, Co-Founder, Act for Sudan
23. Diane Koosed, Co-chair, Never Again Coalition
24. Andie Lambe, Executive Director, International Refugee Rights Initiative
25. Laura Limuli, Coordinator, Brooklyn Coalition for Darfur & Marginalized Sudan
26. Faith J. H. McDonnell, Director, Religious Liberty Program and Church Alliance for a New Sudan, The
Institute on Religion and Democracy
27. Heidi McGinness, Director of Outreach, Christian Solidarity International
28. Gerri Miller, Coordinator, Dear Sudan, Love Marin
29. Albaqir A Mukhtar, Director, Al Khatim Adlan Centre for Enlightenment & Human Development
30. Osman Naway, Rights for Peace Foundation
31. Nell Okie, Director, Elsa-Gopa Trust
32. Lisa Pearce, CEO, Open Doors UK & Ireland
33. Professor Eric Reeves, activist and blogger
34. David L. Rosenberg, Coordinator, Pittsburgh Darfur Emergency Coalition
35. William Rosenfeld, Director, Massachusetts Coalition for Darfur
36. Daowd Salih, Co-Founder and Board President, Damanga Coalition for Freedom and Democracy
37. Anita Sanborn, President, Colorado Episcopal Foundation
38. Katie-Jay Scott, Managing Director, Stop Genocide Now
39. Sharon Silber, Co-Director, Jews Against Genocide
40. Esther Sprague, Founder and Director, Sudan Unlimited
41. Richard Sribnick MD, Chairman, Darfur Action Group of South Carolina
42. Al Sutton MD, President, African Freedom Coalition
43. Claire Vera, Nuba Now!
44. Olivia Warham, Director, Waging Peace
45. Elhag Ali Warrag, Chief Editor, Hurriyat
46. Eileen Weiss, Co-Founder, NY Coalition for Sudan

Regions: North and Horn of Africa, Sudan
Type: Advocacy