Urgent Appeal to World Leaders to Save Peace in Sudan

"The civilian attacks and bombardments of South Sudanese have killed and scattered innocent civilians".

 SOUTH SUDANESE CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANIZING COMMITTEE
FOR REFERENDUM 2011
Brooks Alberta, Canada
 
Urgent Appeal to the International Community
 
December 12, 2010
 
His Excellency Stephen Harper, the Prime Minister of Canada
 
The Right Honorable Michael Ignatieff, Leader of the Official Opposition in Canada
His Excellency Barack Obama, the President of the United States of America
 
His Excellency David Cameron, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
 
The Right Honorable Ed Miliband, the Leader of Opposition in the House of Commons
His Excellency Salva Kiir, the President of the Government of South Sudan
 
His Excellency Herman Van Rumpus, the President of the Council of the European Union
His Excellency Jens Stoltenberg, the Prime Minister of Norway
 
His Excellency Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations Secretary General
His Excellency Bingu Wa Mathrika, Chairperson of the African Union
 
His Excellency Mahbub Moalim, the Secretary General of Intergovernmental Authority on Development
 
 
Your Excellencies,
 
The Right Honorable Leaders,
 
We the undersigned South Sudanese Canadian community and friends in Brooks, and other surrounding areas in Alberta, Canada as well as South Sudanese and friends all over the world are seriously concerned about the constant threat to the peace and stability of our people in South Sudan. The Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA)  signed in 2005 between the Sudan ruling party, National Congress Party (NCP) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) has granted the people of South Sudan the right to self determination. The peace process is actively under progress but with constant abuse and interruption by the NCP-ruling government in Khartoum.
 
The NCP government through its Information Minister on 25th September 2010 threatened to break fundamental human rights of South Sudanese in
 
Khartoum and other parts of North Sudan should South Sudanese people chose to exercise their right to self determination and subsequently secede.
 
 Kamal Obeid, Sudan's information minister said: “[South Sudanese] will not enjoy citizens’ rights, jobs or benefits, they will not be allowed or sell in Khartoum market and they will not be treated in hospitals..we [NCP-ruling government] will not even give them [South Sudanese] a needle in hospitals”( ST)
 
Following this statement, South Sudan Television (SSTV) collaborated with various media outlets on the internet, reporting regular attacks and aerial bombardments of innocent civilians in Greater Bahr El-Gazal states of South Sudan and along South-North border.
 
The civilian attacks and bombardments of South Sudanese have killed and scattered innocent civilians. These atrocities have created fear and destabilized the lives of South Sudanese people. This fear created by the NCP is making it difficult for the civilians to participate in the exercise of their right for self determination during the referendum process. The merciless regime in Khartoum has violated the Comprehensive Peace Agreement and abused fundamental human rights of South Sudanese people.
 
November 14, 2010 Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) dropped bombs in Northern Bahr El Ghazal scaring and scattering civilians across the area.
 
November 24, 2010 SAF forces dropped bombs at Kiir Adam bridge of Greater Bahr El Ghazal inflicting serious fear on civilian population.
 
December 3, 2010 SAF forces ambushed SPLA killing 12 including two civilians and wounding 10.
 
December 10, 2010 SAF forces dropped 18 bombs at Timsa and Raja counties South of Western Bahr El Ghazal State of South Sudan again causing civilian population to scatter and running around for their safety.
 
The NCP-government sent out messages before voting for referendum indicating that it would not respect the aspirations of South Sudanese people for independence.  As a matter of fact, opinion polls already indicate that over 90 percent of South Sudanese demand separation.
 
Omar Hassan El-Bashir, the president of the Government of Sudan said on the Al Arabia News Channel that “Despite our Commitment to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, we will not accept an alternative to unity”
 
The right to self determination has not been granted to South Sudanese without price. It has come after more than fifty years of bloodshed claiming millions of lives of South Sudanese to war. Millions more have suffered inhumane treatment and enslavement. To understand our struggle better, it is important to give a brief account about us.
 
South Sudan has an autonomous government in the Republic of Sudan granted by the terms of the CPA.  It is geopolitically located south of the predominantly Arab and Muslim north; Central African Republic to the West; Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda and Kenya to the South and Ethiopia to the East.
 
South Sudan covers an area of more than 250,000 square miles with a population of 8.26 million. This population was published in June of 2009 by South Sudan Center for Statistic, Census and Evaluation. The Government of South Sudan has disputed the firgure outright on the basis that the NCP government under-counted South Sudanese.
 
Sudan is derived from the word “Sud” meaning black in Arabic. “Belad El Sudan” thus meaning the land of blacks.
 
Historically, the first entry of none African race was marked by the introduction and spread of Christianity between 540AD and1317AD (El Mahdi, Mandour. A Short History of the Sudan: Oxford University Press, 1978, P 20-26). The Arabs started entering Sudan in smaller numbers as traders at a time when Christianity was the dominant religion.
 
During the Turko-Egyptian period under the Ottoman Empire however, the Muslim Arabs entered in larger numbers. At this time the Islamic Revolution was on the rise and a “..Muslim holy man and Zealot named Mohamed Ahmed Bin Abdulla who in 1881 announced himself to be the Mahdi, an Islamic messianic figure..” (Pogo, Scopas S. The First Sudanese Civil War: Palgrave Macmillan 2009 P 21) rose and led a movement known as the Mahdiya Revolution against the Turko-Egyptian rule.
 
The Mahdiya Revolution (1881-1989) increased spread of Islam and Arab traditions into Sudan's African race through conversion of none Muslims into Islam and intermarriages between Arab Muslims and African races. Several political changes took place until the Anglo-Egyptian period (Condominium Rule) that lasted until the independence of Sudan in 1956.
 
The Condominium Rule envisioned the reality and importance of South Sudan as an independent system from the North. “The British therefore adopted an administrative program aimed at treating the north and South Sudan Separately”(Pogo, Scopas S. The First Sudanese Civil War: Palgrave Macmillan 2009 P 22).
 
The British passed the Closed Districts Ordinances of the 1920s where free movement was restricted and where passports and permits were required to travel between the two regions.
 
A language policy then followed in 1928 where English was adopted as the official language for south Sudan and Arabic rejected as a language in the south. These policies were aimed at maintaining the north separate from the south. According to Riek Machar in an article published by the Center for African Studies, University of Pennsylvania; “colonial governors from South Sudan used to attend regular administrative conferences in East Africa instead of Khartoum”  The British consolidated their presence in the north establishing the necessary political and administrative structures to prepare it for self rule but the south was not treated in a similar manner.
 
Instead of forming an advisory council for the south to advice on how the south needs to be administered, the British, Egyptians and north Sudanese colluded in 1946 to hand over south Sudan to be colonized by north Sudan. A conference known as the Juba Conference of 1947 was convened with the sole purpose to inform the chiefs in the south of this decision. The Sudan Legislative Assembly was then created in 1948 and 13 southerners were handpicked to represent south Sudan. Sudan was granted self determination by the British and Egyptians without participation of southerners who were politically and administratively ill prepared as compared with their fellow northerners.
 
The British who clearly knew that the north and the south needed to be administered separately due to their geographical, political, cultural, religious and historical differences chose north Sudan and equipped them to become the south’s new masters. This blunder shall be remembered for centuries to come as the sole reason for civil wars between south and north Sudan resulting in millions of lives lost.
 
The new masters failed to unite the north and south as one country due to lack of policies that encouraged national unity, social justice, freedom and equal participation in governing such a nation. The result was civil unrest.
 
The south has all along been administered as a separate country from the north which is predominantly Arab and Muslim while the south, a mixture of Christian and animist beliefs. The south was not ready to embrace its new master due to the underlying political, historical, cultural, religious and other differences between them and the involvement of the northerners in enslaving southerners during slavery.
 
In 1955, one year prior to independence, a civil war broke out lasting 17 years of brutal war between the north and south. Relative peace only came when President Nimeri (representing the north) and Joseph Lagu (representing the south) agreed to sign a peace deal. Therefore in 1972 the Addis Ababa Accord which granted the south autonomy from the north was signed - brokered by the World Council of Churches.
 
President Nimeri was not a committed party to the Addis Ababa Accord that they had signed with Joseph Lagu. One of the major causations of second civil war was when  President Nimeri abrogated the Addis Ababa Agreement In 1983 by imposing the Sharia law on the national level. The southerners who were predominantly Christians and animists were totally against these laws, laws which even the Mahdi; a religious leader himself did not impose during his rule of Sudan. The second civil war erupted in 1983 and lasted for 21 years.
 
Successive regimes following that of Nimeri did not work with southerners to resolve the issues that reignited the war in the first place. Numerous negotiations for peace between the north and south were sought and Jan 09 2005 marked the successful signing of the 1972 the Addis Ababa Accord (CPA) in Naïvasa, Kenya. Enshrined in the CPA is 6 years of autonomy followed by referendum for separation from the north as a sovereign nation on Jan 09 2011.
 
In general terms, Sudan has been in war for fifty years since 1955 with ten years of relative peace between 1972 and 1982 following the Addis Ababa Agreement of 1972. Signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement on Jan 09 2005 brings hope to all the oppressed and marginalized masses of Sudan and south Sudanese in particular because this will give the south its long awaited freedom from its Arab master and its subsequent independent state.
 
It will be remembered that prior to this awaited day, the north-south relation has been marred with conflicts and brutal warfare. The civil war between 1983 and 2005 claimed over 2 million lives and displacing 4 million from their homes.
 
Atrocities inflicted on the southerners are numerous. Some of them reported by Riek Machar are listed below:
 
a.Decimation of the population of South Sudan through prosecution of war and perpetrating large scale massacres of innocent people by various North regimes:-
 
-Yei, Maridi and Kodok Massacres in 1964 were carried out by the regime of Abboud.
 
-Juba, Wau, Torit, Warajwok, Bor, Akobo Massacres in 1965 were carried out by Mohammed Ahmed Mahgoub government.
 
-Dhaein Massacre 1987/88 in which 3,000 South Sudanese were killed by government militias and police.
 
-Wau Massacre in 1987 in which more than 100 people were killed by government army.
 
-Jebelien Massacre in 1989/90 in which more than 2000 South Sudanese were killed by government militia.
 
b.Indiscriminate bombing and raiding of civil population centres leading to massive displacement of people from their homes. Already there are over 3 million South Sudanese in the North living under sub- human conditions in the outskirts of Khartoum and other major cities in the North.
 
c.Denial of basic human needs and use of food as a weapon for conversion into Islamic religion.
 
d.Forced Islamization and Arabization of the educational system in the South with the aim to kill indigenous languages and cultures to accentuate Islamic and Arabic dominance.
 
e.Political executions, detentions without trials and disappearance of South Sudanese in the government controlled towns.
 
f. Reviving of slavery and slave trade during this war.
 
The gravity of these atrocities being compelling, they have not gone unnoticed by the international community and peace loving people of the world. The International Criminal Court (ICC) is bringing it to bear on the perpetrators of these crimes. On March 04 2008 the ICC issued an arrest warrant against President Omar Al Basher for crimes committed against humanity. Al Basher defiantly disregards these charges and to this day his regime continues to bomb civilian areas of south Sudan and supporting armed groups and using them to terrorize the south civilian population. In view of these acts, the ICC has again issued another arrest warrant against Al Bashir for genocide on July 12 2010.
History has proven that the north-south geographical, racial, cultural, religious and historical differences do not allow for the co-existence of the north and south as one country. Besides, the north capitalizes on these differences to oppress, subjugate and exploit the southerners. It is certain that a new phase of civil war will commence immediately if the south is once again denied to exercise their democratic right to self determination which is just four weeks away from this date. It is imperative that a just and lasting peace can only come when the people of south Sudan are ALLOWED THEIR RIGHT TO SELF DETERMINATION, a right that has been denied the people of south Sudan by all regimes that have ruled the Sudan as a nation.
 
We as South Sudanese Canadians here by call upon all peace-loving people of the world for their support in this historic process at the moment. We also call upon:
 
1.      International community to intervene and stop the current bombardments and attacks on South Sudanese civilians in South Sudan by the NCP-Led Sudanese government and Mesirya tribesmen,
 
2.      Canadian government and its people to support and stand behind the wishes of the people of South Sudan.
 
3.      Canadian government to press the United Nations to deploy Peace Keepers along the north-south borderline.
 
4.      The United States to pressurize the Khartoum government to fully cooperate in implementing the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in good faith and timely manner.
 
5.      The CPA partners and international community to unite behind the people of South Sudan and support their wishes and aspirations for separation of South Sudan from the oppressive regime of NCP-led government in Khartoum.
 
6.      UN Secretary General to serious act for implementation of no-fly zone along Abiyei, Greater Bahr El Ghazal areas and alongside South-North borderline
 
7.      The CPA partners and International Community to serious pressure the UN Security Council to take immediate action and deploy peace keepers in the South-North borderline to avoid genocide in South Sudan.
 
8.      The Khartoum government to support a fair and transparent referendum process and to honour the outcome of the referendum vote by south Sudanese beginning Jan 09 2011.
 
Your Excellencies,
 
The Right Honourable leaders,
 
 
The South Sudanese Canadian community in Brooks and surrounding areas trust that you will promptly respond to our appeal to ensure a full and transparent implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.
 
 
Signed on behalf of South Sudanese Civil Society Organizing Committee for Referendum 2011:
 
Participating contact persons;
Atek Akoon, Chairperson: atekakoon@hotmail.com +1-403-501-2792)
Manas Kenyi, Secretary General: kajokeji@hotmail.com +1-403-409-9565)
Michael Mayen, Deputy Secretary: michaelmayen10@yahoo.com +1-403-427-0394
Abraham Khor, Information Secretary: abrahamkhor2005@hotmail.com +1-403-793-5241
Manasseh Bungi Nelson, Member of Advisory Team: bungibungi@netscape.net +1-403-793-2262
 
Participating Team;
Garison Gonda
Gabriel Aroba
Augustino Dishol
Samuel Atem
Mayen Atem
William Akech
Deng Lual
Gaw Ayii
Ashrin Anyoan
Matiop Awak
Madut Dut
Deng Bul Thon
Dau Achuoth Yong
Mangok Garang
Diction Moses
Juac Khor juac
Martin Ariel
John Majak
Alijah Gabriel
Deng Nhial Garang
Angett Arou Angett
Pat Venfeld
Lina Altur
Ijal Simon
Lual Thiong Lual
Makuol Agou Buoth
Butros Agok Deng
Anyarik Anik
Twongo Joseph Charles
David yall
Tunde Adeniran
Peter Boyo
GasanMagot
Kung Youing
Tereza Moses Majok
Boga Dau Ngor
Tomas Nyarsuk
Pascal Mayon
Yok Kuol
Brenston Basleo
Ayan Marien
Sara Malok
Lemi Lokadi
Robert Stephen
Alith Young
Lelea young
Felix Dumo
Modesto Lako
Ajak Goot

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