Prevent Genocide International 

News Monitor for October 2004
Tracking current news on genocide and items related to past and present ethnic, national, racial and religious violence.

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Reuters Thu Oct 7, 2004 UN Panel to Look Into Genocide in Sudan's Darfur By Irwin Arieff UNITED NATIONS, Oct 7 (Reuters) -- U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan named a five-member panel on Thursday led by Italian judge Antonio Cassese to investigate whether genocide has taken place in Sudan's Darfur region. Created at the request of the U.N. Security Council in a U.S.-drafted resolution, the commission will also look into reports of widespread violations of international humanitarian and human rights laws in the western Sudanese area. Panel members agreed to submit their findings in three months to Annan, who would then report to the council, a U.N. spokeswoman said. More than 1.5 million people have been driven from their homes and up to 50,000 killed by fighting in Darfur since a rebellion broke out in February 2003, according to the United Nations, which calls the area the world's worst humanitarian crisis. The U.S. government believes genocide is taking place in Darfur, and two top U.N. human rights watchdogs told the council this month war crimes had probably occurred on "a large and systematic scale" there. The two were Argentine Juan Mendez, the special U.N. adviser for the prevention of genocide, and Canadian Louise Arbour, the U.N. high commissioner for human rights. The Khartoum government blames the violence largely on anti-government rebels, although it has agreed to rein in nomadic Arab militias it is widely believed to have armed. The area's settled African residents accuse the so-called Janjaweed militias of widespread murder and rape and pillaging and torching their villages. Cassese was the first president of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, a court based in The Hague that is looking into suspected war crimes in the Balkans including during Bosnia's 1992-1995 war. Other commission members include Egyptian Mohammed Fayek, secretary-general of the Arab Organization for Human Rights, and Diego Garcia-Sayan, a former Peruvian foreign minister and justice minister. Pakistani Hani Jilani, Annan's special representative on human rights defenders, and Ghanaian Therese Striggner Scott, chairwoman of the Ghana Law Reform Commission, were also named to the commission.

UN News Centre 7 Oct 2004 www.un.org/News/ Annan appoints five-member panel to probe possible genocide in Darfur, Sudan Kofi Annan (centre) with four commission members 7 October 2004 – Secretary-General Kofi Annan today announced the formal establishment of a commission of inquiry to determine whether acts of genocide have occurred in Sudan’s strife-torn Darfur region, selecting an Italian judge and professor to lead the probe. The five-member commission will also investigate reports of violations of international humanitarian law and human rights by all parties in Darfur, where Janjaweed militias stand accused of killing and raping thousands of villagers after local rebel groups took up arms against the Sudanese Government. Mr. Annan set up the inquiry after the Security Council requested he do so in a resolution adopted last month on the humanitarian and security crises engulfing Darfur, a vast and impoverished region in western Sudan. About 1.45 million people are internally displaced within Darfur and another 200,000 are living as refugees in neighbouring Chad, and UN officials have described the situation as the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. Under the Security Council resolution, the commission is also mandated to identify the perpetrators of any acts of genocide “with a view to ensuring that those responsible are held accountable.” Prof. Antonio Cassese of Italy, the first President of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), will be the commission’s chairman. Professor Cassese has taught international law in Italy and the United Kingdom and also served on human rights committees for the Council of Europe. The other members are Diego Garcia-Sayán of Peru, Mohammed Fayek of Egypt, Hina Jilani of Pakistan and Thérese Striggner Scott of Ghana. Dumisa Ntsebeza of South Africa will act as Executive Director, heading the technical team that supports the commission. Mr. Garcia-Sayán is a former Foreign Affairs and Justice Minister of Peru, a legal professor for nearly 20 years and a UN negotiator during the Guatemalan peace talks in the early 1990s. Mr. Fayek is Secretary-General of the Arab Organization for Human Rights, a non-governmental organization (NGO) and has served as both a minister and as a presidential adviser during his time in the Egyptian parliament. Ms. Jilani has been the Secretary-General’s Special Representative on Human Rights Defenders since August 2000. She has a long record as a human rights lawyer and activist in Pakistan and started the country’s first firm of women lawyers in 1980. Mrs. Striggner Scott, currently chair of Ghana’s Law Reform Commission, has worked as a High Court judge in Ghana and Zimbabwe and has also been an ambassador for her country during a long diplomatic career. The commission has three months to complete its work and report back to Mr. Annan, and the five members are expected to leave shortly for Sudan.

www.chinaview.cn 8 Oct 2004 UN appoints panel to investigate alleged atrocities in west Sudan 2004-10-08 06:25:24 UNTIED NATIONS, Oct. 7 (Xinhuanet) -- UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan appointed on Thursday an independent panel to investigate reported serious human rights violations in Darfur, west Sudan, and to determine whether or not acts of genocide have occurred in the region. The International Commission of Inquiry will be chaired by Italian judge Antonio Cassese, the first president of the UN-backed international criminal tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, UN spokesman Fred Eckhard told reporters. The panel, created as required by a resolution adopted by the UN Security Council on Sept. 18, will comprise four other members former Peruvian Justice Minister Diego Garcia-Sayan, Pakistani lawyer Hina Jilani, Ghanaian judge Therese Striggner Scott and Egyptian human rights expert Mohammed Fayek. South African human rights lawyer Dumisa Ntsebeza will serve asexecutive director heading a technical team supporting the commission. Some members of the commission will meet with Annan later on Thursday and the Geneva-based UN High Commissioner for Human Rights will provide support to the panel, Eckhard said. Darfur, an impoverished region the size of France, grabbed global attention early this year after UN officials reported a serious humanitarian crisis in the region, where two rebel forces formed by local settled tribes have fought against the government since February 2003. UN estimates said the conflict has left at least 30,000 people dead and some 1.2 million others internally displaced. Another 200,000 people fled to neighboring Chad. A militia group, known as the Janjaweed and drawn from local nomadic tribes which have long competed for water and land resources with the settlers, has been accused of launching brutal attacks against settled tribes with the connivance of the government. But the government denied any links with the Janjaweed, labeling it as an outlaw group composed of robbers and bandits. Khartoum also questioned the UN-estimated death toll and put its own estimate at no more than 5,000. The US administration declared the violence in Darfur as genocide last month. But the declaration got little active support from other countries.


The Monitor (Kampala) NEWS October 19, 2004 Posted to the web October 18, 2004 'Criminals Must Plead to Get Amnesty' By Ibrahim Kasita Kampala Criminals should first confess to specific crimes before they are pardoned, MPs have proposed. They say confessing would create accountability in the public eye. MPs made the proposals at a seminar by the Parliamentarians for Global Action on the theme 'Security Sector Reform' in Kampala on Thursday. They recommended that victims should retain the right to sue a criminal even though the Amnesty Law protects him. The seminar attracted legislators from Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Rwanda, South Africa, Sweden, Tanzania and Uganda. The group has 1,350 members' worldwide. The seminar suggested that countries should follow up cases referred to the International Criminal Court. " The Amnesty Law does not stop an individual from pursuing a case with the ICC even if the offender has been pardoned," the Solicitor General, Mr Lucian Tibaruha. Parliamentarians were concerned that most of the atrocities committed by national armies against civilians in conflict regions go unpunished. MPs urged warring factions to adopt a spirit of openness for peace to prevail in troubled regions. They also urged governments to wipe out corruption and facilitate the judiciary for justice to prevail. They recommended that there is a need to fund all parties and strengthen the Electoral Commission to conduct free and fair elections. They urged the government to demilitarise politics and to accept defeat in an election to restore trust and confidence in the population. They said civil society must maintain pressure on decision makers to make policies that affect the population positively to eradicate poverty.

ICRC 25 Oct 2004 ICRC News 04/128 Promoting international humanitarian law in Africa The ICRC continues its efforts to raise awareness and understanding of international humanitarian law across Africa. In the continent’s most populous nation Nigeria, for example, the organization recently organized two events in conjunction with federal authorities. One was a workshop for some 50 senior civil servants to inform them of what is being done to implement humanitarian law treaties in the country. The other was a course for the Nigerian police on human rights law, various policing concepts, law enforcement, protection of vulnerable groups, and command and management. Meanwhile, in one of Africa's more difficult situations – Burundi – the ICRC has been arranging a series of seminars on international humanitarian and human rights law for army and police officers. Three such events have been organized in the past two weeks for nearly 90 mid-ranking officials and trainees of the armed and police forces. These presentations are carried out by experienced delegates who themselves have served as armed forces and police officers. They constitute one of the ICRC’s main activities the world over. For further information please contact: Ashot Astabatsyan, ICRC Abuja, tel. +234 9 413 5947 or +234 9 413 3683 Elizabeth Twinch / Nicolas Vako, ICRC Bujumbura, tel. +257 212865 or +257 212908 Marco Jiménez, ICRC Geneva, tel. ++41 79 217 3217

IRIN 29 Oct 2004 Sudan: AU boosts troop levels in Darfur [This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations] ADDIS ABABA, 29 October (IRIN) - The African Union (AU) began boosting its peacekeeping force in Sudan's Darfur region on Friday with the arrival of 50 Nigerian troops. A further 237 soldiers from Rwanda are expected to arrive on Saturday to help try and end violence that has driven more than 1.5 million people from their homes, the AU said. "More troops from Nigeria and from other African countries are expected to be deployed in the following days," the AU said in a statement from its headquarters in Addis Ababa. The 53-nation AU announced earlier in October that it would boost its force in Darfur from 390 to 3,320 troops and civilian police. The force will include 450 unarmed military observers, a major increase from the 80 currently deployed there to monitor a shaky ceasefire between two rebel groups fighting government troops and allied militia. An armed security force of 310 troops is protecting the observers. The force will be increased to 2,341. The new mission will also include 815 civilian police officers and 164 civilian staff. The US $220-million (€175 million) one-year operation will be funded mainly by the European Union and the United States. "These new deployments, together with the 310 military personnel from Nigeria and Rwanda that the AU had already sent to Darfur earlier in August, will bring the military component of the African mission in Sudan to 597 troops," the AU added. Darfur's troubles stem from long-standing tensions between nomadic Arab tribes and their African farming neighbours over dwindling water and agricultural land. Those tensions erupted into violence in February 2003 when two African-rebel groups took up arms over what they regard as unjust treatment by the government in their struggle with Arab countrymen. An estimated 70,000 people have died since the conflict broke out, according to UN figures. Nearly 1.5 million more have fled to refugee camps. American Secretary of State Colin Powell said in July that Sudan's government and allied Arab militia, the Janjawid, had committed acts of genocide against Darfur's non-Arab villagers.


AFP 4 Oct 2004 Political tension prompts 400 to flee Burundi for Rwanda BUJUMBURA, Oct 4 (AFP) - More than 400 people have fled Burundi for Rwanda over the last fortnight amid mounting political tension in their home country, officials in Burundi said Monday, adding that most of the refugees were from the traditionally dominant Tutsi minority. "Over the last two weeks, more than 400 people, mostly Tutsi women and children, have fled Bugabira commune (in the northern Kirundo province) for Rwanda," the commune's administrator, Ildephonse Sabushimike, told AFP. Kirundo Governor Philippe Njoni told AFP that another 30 people had left their homes in two other settlements in the province. "They are leaving because of the political atmosphere and also because of incendiary speeches by some politicians about the constitutional referendum and the end of the transition," said Sabushimike. Burundi, where an ethnic civil war simmers on into its eleventh year, is soon to hold a referendum on a new basic law outlining the distribution of power between the Tutsis and the Hutu majority, a constitution that is meant to cap a three-year interim administration. A series of elections is also due to be held shortly. The transition process is not going smoothly, however, and Burundi's 10 most important Tutsi political parties have rejected the draft constitution on the table and have taken their case to have it scrapped to the constitutional court, warning that the text failed to take into account the concerns of the Tutsi community. Burundi's modern history is scarred by several inter-ethnic massacres. More than 300,000 people have been killed in the civil war, which began in 1993 when armed Hutu groups rose up against an army and government then dominated by Tutsis.

IRIN 4 Oct 2004 Burundi: MP's plea over stranded Batwa families [This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations] BUJUMBURA, 4 October (IRIN) - A group of families from the Batwa minority ethnic group in Burundi have nowhere to go after their homes were burnt on 16 September, a Member of Parliament (MP) from the community told IRIN on Monday. The MP for Gitega, Liberate Nicayenzi, blamed the local administration for the burning of 50 houses at Rwitonga in Busoni Commune of Kirundo Province, northern Burundi. Nicayenzi said administrative officials, including the Kirundo governor, commander of the district and the zone's chief, "were watching" as the houses were set ablaze. Nicayenzi said she sent a protest letter to President Domitien Ndayizeye following the action, but she had not received a response, so far. The administration in Busoni does not deny Nicayenzi's claims, but justifies the act by saying residents had been given several warnings to vacate the area. They had built their homes on natural reserve land. According to local officials who requested anonymity, the Batwa community was not the only target, as other homes of Hutu families were also destroyed. The officials claimed most of the affected families owned other parcels of land elsewhere, but preferred to live in Busoni because of the land's fertility. Nicayenzi said the Batwa whose homes were destroyed were still waiting for help from the administration. She added that alternative plots they had been offered at a former mining site were unsuitable for human habitation. Former President Pierre Buyoya granted the Batwa the land in 1998. Other communities later joined the Batwa families in settling in the area. Nicayenzi told IRIN she failed to understand the evacuation, as many of the Batwa had already acquired land ownership.

Xinhua 11 Oct 2004 Over 1,100 Burundians flee to Rwanda amid mounting tensions KIGALI, Oct 11, 2004 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Rwandan State Minister of Foreign Affairs Protaise Mitali has confirmed here that over 1,100 Burundian refugees crossed to Rwanda Monday morning amid mounting tensions that could break into a civil war before or after the general elections slated late this year. The refugees who left their home in Burundi's Bugabira area claimed to be threatened by their fellow citizens who warned to kill them if the minority Tutsi wins the elections. Some Hutu ethnic people have been supported and armed by faction parties which have in the past few days launched attacks to destabilize them, a Burundian refugee said. If these refugees keep coming in influx, then the Rwandan government will have to set up other new camps, Mitali said, adding that the refugees are currently in two camps of Ngenda in Kigali and Gikonko in Butare where they found another 700 compatriots. Burundi, a tiny central country where the Hutus make up 85 percent of its population whereas the Tutsis, 14 percent, is emerging from its civil war fueled by rivalry between the country' s majority Hutus and minority Tutsis and its three-year transition to democratic rule is set to end on Oct. 31 this year. Yet the country's political groups have not yet fully agreed upon the power-sharing plan brokered by South Africa's deputy president. Under the plan drawn by the chief mediator for Burundian peace process Jacob Zuma, the first president of Burundi's post- transitional era will have to be elected by a two-thirds majority of the combined upper and lower houses of parliament. The two vice presidents will be drawn from different tribes and political parties. The upper house (senate) will have equal numbers of Hutus and Tutsis plus three senators from the Twa (pygmy) tribe while the lower house (national assembly) will be composed of 60 percent of Hutus and 40 percent of Tutsis. So far, some 20 political groups in Burundi have agreed upon the power-sharing plan whereas eight to nine groups are still opposed to it in fear of whether the Tutsi-dominated parties can take control of 40 percent of the national assembly seats and 40 percent of the cabinet's ministerial posts, and whether the sole vice president as the Tutsi parties have proposed will have the right to veto the decisions of the president. Asked if Burundi could honor the earlier date set for elections, Mitali said they still have a lot of challenges which include mending a constitution and setting laws that would rule the election college. Meanwhile, Volker, an official from the Office of United Nations High Commissioner on Refugee (UNHCR), said on Monday they have coordinated with the Rwandan government to find out how the refugees would be treated. The refugees are in fear of their security and that's why they had to run in save of their lives, he said. However, the refugees called on the international community to intervene and easy the tension.

Reuters 29 Oct 2004 Burundi criticises UN report on refugee massacre 29 Oct 2004 17:43:08 GMT Source: Reuters BUJUMBURA, Oct 29 ( Reuters) - Burundi's government on Friday criticised a United Nations report on the Aug. 13 massacre of 160 Congolese refugees in Burundi, calling it ignorant of the available evidence. Attackers hacked, bludgeoned and burned to death 160 refugees at the desolate Gatumba transit camp, near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo. The U.N. report said contaminated evidence at the scene made it impossible to identify any perpetrators besides a Hutu rebel group, the Forces for National Liberation (FNL), which earlier claimed responsibility for the massacre. Burundi's minister of foreign affairs, Therence Sinunguruza, said the report failed to identify the other perpetrators of the massacre when there was clear evidence showing a coalition of FNL rebels, Congolese traditional Mai Mai fighters and Rwandan Hutu militia had been responsible. "On the current stage of national inquiries, the attackers who operated were about 750, including 300 FNL rebels, 250 Mai Mai and 200 Rwandan Hutu rebels of FDLR," he said. An FNL participant in the massacre and a top Mai Mai commander in Burundian custody "have clearly indicated how things happened from the preparations, the aims, the reasons, the operations", Sinunguruza said. "The report is much more motivated by political reasons than the search of truth, since the authors of the massacre are well known." Burundi's government is continuing with its investigations and plans to bring those responsible to the International Criminal Court in the Hague, a course the U.N. report urged.

Cote D'Ivoire

IRIN 5 Oct 2004 Cote d'Ivoire: Pro-Gbagbo youths resume protests against French peacekeepers [This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations] ABIDJAN, 5 October (IRIN) - Wielding machetes, hurling stones, firing marbles with catapults and slinging burning tyres, young supporters of Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo have resumed their protests against the continued presence of French peacekeeping troops in the divided country. On Tuesday, about 300 members the militia-style youth movement known as the Young Patriots staged a third day of rowdy demonstrations outside the main French military base in Abidjan, ignoring a plea by Gbagbo to stop the violence. The resumption of Young Patriot protests outside the base near Abidjan airport after a gap of three months, comes as political tensions are rising and Cote d'Ivoire's fragile peace process once more appears to be running into quicksand. The latest deal between Gbagbo, the parliamentary opposition parties and rebels occupying the north of the country, signed in the Ghanaian capital Accra on July 30, is coming unstuck. The government has failed to legislate promised political reforms and it is now clear that the rebels will not begin to disarm on 15 October as planned. As in previous times of crisis since a French-brokered peace agreement was signed in January 2003, the 4,000 French troops, stationed alongside 6,000 UN peacekeepers in the world's largest cocoa producer, are coming under attack from Gbagbo supporters. So too are people from northern Cote d'Ivoire and immigrants from other West African countries suspected of sympathising with the rebels. They were the main target of a particularly brutal raid by police and soldiers on Adjame market in Abidjan on 29 September. It provoked a protest from the UN Operation in Cote d'Ivoire (ONUCI), which said it was "seriously worried" that human rights violations appeared to have taken place. Many traders were beaten up and had their goods confiscated as the security forces raided the market on the grounds of checking for unlicensed traders and diplomatic sources said some women were raped. Then on Monday the French force said its troops were involved in a clash with machete-wielding youths at the small town of Sikensi, 80 km north of Abidjan, injuring one of them with a rubber bullet fired in self-defence. For the past two weeks, the government's feared Mi-24 helicopter gunships have been making frequent low-level flights over Abidjan, raising fears of renewed violence among the population as a whole, and military road blocks have been stepped up. The unease of the large French expatriate community in the city has meanwhile increased following the murder of a French restaurant owner in the nearby beach resort of Grand Bassam on Sunday. The French consulate said he was shot dead in his own restaurant after being badly beaten up by intruders. Charles Ble Goude, the firebrand leader of the Young Patriots, who according to diplomats has close links with Gbagbo, organised the latest protest demonstrations outside the French base in Abidjan. The immediate focus of his attention this time was last month's arrest of 12 French soldiers accused of stealing money from a bank they were supposed to be guarding in the rebel-held city of Man. On Tuesday, witnesses said French soldiers responded to the Young Patriot protesting outside their Abidjan by firing tear gas and water cannons to disperse the crowd. French military spokesman Henry Aussavy told IRIN that 15 of his men had been slightly injured in the fracas. The violence occurred despite a televised plea for calm by Gbagbo on Monday night. "To all those who want to organise protests in front of the (French base) and in front of the U.N., I am asking them to stay at home," he said. The President issued a further plea for calm at a meeting with his own military commanders and those of the French and UN peacekeeping forces on Tuesday. According to a transcript of the meeting made available to IRIN, Gbagbo said it was time to end the "wild rumours" which had been flying round, an apparent reference to recent talk of a possible coup. This has been partly whipped up by pro-Gbagbo newspapers, such as Note Voie, Le Temps and Le Courier which have recently carried frequent reports about alleged coup plots and assassination plans. Gbagbo put the blame for the latest flare-up on the approach of 15 October, the deadline for the start of disarmament under the terms of the Accra Three agreement. "I believe we shouldn't have a fixation around October 15," he said, according to the transcript of his meeting with the military chiefs. The last round of international peace talks in the Ghanaian capital Accra in July set the mid-October deadline for both rebels and militias to start handing over their weapons and also called on Gbagbo's ruling party to push through long-delayed political reforms, aimed at paving the way for disarmament. The reforms are aimed at giving four million immigrants to Cote d'Ivoire from other West African countries and their descendents greater rights to own land, take Ivorian nationality and run for the presidency. They are also seen as a precursor to securing free and fair elections, scheduled for a year's time. But a special session of parliament closed without passing any of them last week. Parliament reopens on Wednesday, but there are no expectations that it will pass the legal reform package in time for disarmament to kick off on 15 October. Nobody appears to have any clear idea of what will happen next, but the demonstrations of the last three days are further evidence that political tempers are rising. Several diplomats and political commentators described this week's demonstrations as a show of force by Gbagbo and his supporters. "All this muscle flexing is just to test the waters. The real troubles are ahead," said one analyst who used to work as an advisor to Gbagbo. One West African diplomat working for the United Nations in Dakar agreed. "We all know where it is coming from," he said. But the diplomat added that what was more worrying than the recent violence was the fact that Cote d'Ivoire appeared to be "on a one-way street to nowhere."

DR Congo

IRIN 8 Oct 2004 ICC signs cooperation accord with Kinshasa [ This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations] © ICC KINSHASA, 8 Oct 2004 (IRIN) - The International Criminal Court (ICC) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) signed an accord on Wednesday allowing the court to begin investigations into war crimes and crimes against humanity committed within the country. "We have finalised and signed an accord with the government to permit the investigation," Yves Sorokobi, the spokesperson for the court's prosecutor, told IRIN. The court's assistant prosecutor, Serge Brammertz, and the minister for justice, Kisimba Ngoy, signed the accord in the capital, Kinshasa. Ngoy said the court now had "jurisdiction" to operate in the country. A 12-member delegation from the two-year-old court, headed by Brammertz, arrived in Kinshasa on Monday to finalise the accord. The court is due to be properly established in the country by the beginning of 2005. The court's prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, first formally considered investigating crimes in the DRC earlier this year, following a request by President Joseph Kabila for him to do so. In June, Moreno-Ocampo agreed to start investigations, particularly into crimes perpetrated in the troubled district of Ituri, in northeastern DRC. He is investigating crimes committed in the north of Uganda, following a request by the president of that country. "The court can only investigate serious crimes committed since July 2002," Ngoy said. He was referring to the date the ICC was created, which is also the date from which crimes must have been committed in order for the court to have the mandate to investigate and prosecute them. "The Congolese judiciary will deal with a number of crimes committed before that date," he said. Numerous human rights violations and other serious crimes were reportedly perpetrated in the DRC during five years of war. And crimes are reportedly still being committed, particularly in the east of the country, despite a global peace agreement signed in December 2002. According to NGOs, on-going fighting between armed groups in Ituri has left tens of thousands dead and at least 500,000 people displaced. The serious crimes committed there include allegations of cannibalism against the Batwa people, also known as Pygmies. Sorokobi said the office of the prosecutor "has received relevant information from President Joseph Kabila as well as other recent information, but we are not able to make a comment on it".

Xinhuanet 20 Oct 2004 Over 8,500 genocide participants still in Congo: UN www.chinaview.cn 2004-10-20 21:45:38 KIGALI, Oct. 20 (Xinhuanet) -- The UN Peacekeeping Mission in the Congo (MONUC) has said that the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) still gives sanctuary to over 8,500 extremist Hutu militias involved in the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, a state-run newspaper reported on Wednesday. The report said that the number of the militias, known as the Interahamwe, had increased after they recruited young men who crossed to the DRC in 1994 aged between 8-10 years. The Interahamwe mostly around south Kivu region bordering Rwanda also recruited into their ranks the genocide suspects who escaped and crossed to the DRC after being released from prison onpresidential pardon. Asked for a comment, Rwandan Foreign Minister Charles Muligandesaid the report concerning the big number of the militias is "not a surprise." He however warned that although they had not received the report, the government would still "not tolerate their hostile plans." The Interahamwe has been reportedly involved in a recent massacre of over 150 people in a Burundi refugee camp. An estimated 800,000 people, mainly Tutsis and politically moderate Hutus, were killed in the genocide in 1994, which was organized by extremist Hutus in Rwanda in the space of just 100 days.


AFP 21 Oct 2004 Ethiopian court sentences three genocide suspects to death ADDIS ABABA, Oct 20 (AFP) -- An Ethiopian high court on Wednesday sentenced three genocide suspects to death and a fourth to 20 years in prison for murders carried out during the reign of dictator Mengistu Haile Mariam. The court sentenced Iman Kelil Oumar, Beyan Ahmed Ousman and Asli Ahmed to death and Biftu Roba to 20 years behind bars for their role in the death of 207 people in Ethiopia's east and west Hararge Zones in 1991, the ruling stated. The court found Iman was found guilty of involvement in the killing of 207 people, Beyan for participating in the killing of 205 people and Asli for his involving in the killing of 89 people. It also found Biftu guilty of killing a woman and harrasing civilians while armed. The four members of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) carried out the murders on the basis that their victims were from the Amhara ethnic group and spies of the ruling party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front. Since 1994, Ethiopia has conducted trials of people accused of genocide and crimes against humanity, particularly during the so-called Red Terror period, when tens of thousands of Ethiopians were killed or simply disappeared. Nearly 5,200 former soldiers and communist activists are due to be tried by the courts. Around 2,200 are currently in prison in Ethiopia. Mengistu, who has lived in Zimbabwe since fleeing in 1991, was convicted in absentia. The OLF was part of Ethiopia's transition government from 1991-95, after the fall of the Marxist regime of Mengistu. After numerous disputes, the OLF quit the coalition and demanded the creation of an independent state to be called Oromia.


BBC 20 Oct 2004, Liberia moves against Taylor aides The UN froze Mr Taylor's assets in March this year Liberia has imposed economic sanctions on two people with connections to exiled president, Charles Taylor. They appear on a list of 22 names compiled by the United Nations, which passed a resolution in March ordering the freezing of their assets. Justice Minister Kabineh Janneh said the government now has enough evidence to proceed with the resolution. Mr Taylor resigned and fled to Nigeria last year and is wanted on war crimes charges in Sierra Leone. Fuel conflicts Mr Janneh said the assets of Emmanuel Shaw, a former finance minister in the 1980s and the former commissioner of Liberia's maritime affairs bureau, Benoni Urey, would remain frozen until further instructions from the UN Security Council. The two men are both top officials at a mobile phone company, Lone Star Communication. "This is not limited to the two individuals," Mr Janneh told the BBC, warning that further investigations were being made. The BBC's Jonathan Paye-Layleh in the capital Monrovia, said the Security Council recently sent a team to Liberia to see who on their list of Mr Taylor's aides was still operating businesses there. The justice minister told the BBC that he hoped the action would help prevent the destabilisation of the region. The UN alleges that some of the assets of those on its list were used to fuel past conflicts in West Africa. Mr Taylor is alleged to have backed the RUF rebels in Sierra Leone who killed and mutilated many thousands during that country's brutal 10-year conflict. The UN resolution, passed in March, said that the former president and his associates are undermining "Liberia's transition to democracy". After 14 years of civil war, Liberia is expected to hold elections in October next year.

IRIN 27 Oct 2004 Ethiopia: 'Face of famine' has evolved to hope 20 years on [This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations] MEKELE, 27 October (IRIN) - She became the face of famine, yet no one knew her name. Barely alive Birhan Weldu's emaciated face became the despairing image of Ethiopia in 1984 and was beamed to TV screens all over the world. Now Birhan, who miraculously survived the 1984 disaster that claimed the lives of one million Ethiopians, has become a symbol of hope for her country. "Sometimes I can't believe I survived because hundreds of thousands of children like me lost their lives," Birhan, who lost her mother and elder sister to the famine, said. "I was lucky," added the 23 year-old, whose country, one of the world's poorest, is still gripped by food shortages, with millions dependent on foreign food aid. It is 20 years this month since the first TV bulletins galvanised Bob Geldof to form Band Aid, bringing together pop stars to release the song, 'Do They Know It's Christmas?' That year Birhan's father, Weldu Menameno, joined thousands of others to trek to Mekele through the Ethiopian highlands, some 800 km north of the capital, Addis Ababa. He went seeking food after his crops failed from successive droughts. His oldest daughter, Azmara, died on the journey and Birhan was terribly ill. "The nuns who were helping feed people said she would die within 15 minutes," recalls 57-year-old Weldu. "She was dying in my hands." The terrible scene was captured by renowned Canadian TV reporter Brian Stewart and relayed around the world. The footage became the backdrop to the 1985 Live Aid concerts broadcast simultaneously in the US and in Britain. "I wrapped her in a shroud and prepared to bury her, but I didn't have a shovel to dig a grave," added the farmer. "A lot of people were dead - laying on the ground like leaves and I didn't want that for my daughter. Eventually some people helped dig a grave." As Weldu prepared to lay his daughter in the grave he noticed a slight pulse. After intensive care by nurses his daughter survived. Earlier this month, Birhan, who is in her first year of agricultural college, finally met Geldof, who raised US $14 million from Band Aid. She was also introduced to British Prime Minister Tony Blair. The pair arrived in Addis Ababa for the second meeting of the Commission for Africa to help try and bring an end to the poverty, conflict and disease that ravage the continent. Blair said afterwards that Birhan had become a symbol of hope amid the suffering. "Despite all the problems Ethiopia has, they have still made progress," Blair said. However, 20 years after the famine, Ethiopia still remains on the edge. In December the government is expected to appeal for food aid for as many as 12 million people. Last year, 14 million faced starvation without foreign handouts. The population has almost doubled from 40 million to 70 million. Per-capita income has dropped from $190 to under $100 now. The government says the blame lies with unfair western trade and debt policies. Aid levels at $1.9 billion a year are still one of the lowest in Africa. Ethiopia is strapped by massive debt whose interest alone is more than the entire health budget of the country, costing $149 million in 2003. A slump in global coffee prices has also cost the country $167 million in the last three years. Aid organisations and western governments complain about the lack of land ownership, government red tape and restrictions on private businesses and foreign investment. A recent report conducted by the Ethiopian government, the UN and non-governmental organisations found that if changes are not made in areas like population growth, environmental degradation could significantly impact existing land policies, thus creating the potential for future crises to spiral out of control. "A failure to address these issues will only guarantee the continued need to respond to future droughts and crises in an emergency mode with ever increasing resource requirement," it said. "There is no guarantee that the high level of donor assistance will be repeated in future crises." Fortunately, the awful scenes of 1984 have not been repeated thanks to the country's highly sophisticated relief network, set up after the famine. Key institutions now play an integral role in aid effectiveness, which was lacking 20 years ago. One of the best organisations set up during that time period, the Disaster Prevention and Preparedness Commission (DPPC), keeps track of crucial food reserves and serves as the government's emergency and relief arm. The government also has crucial food reserves in place, which now can hold up to 400,000 mt. Early warning systems at the local level feed into a national database that means officials maintain an accurate picture of the food status in the country. The government has already launched the much-heralded $3.2 billion, five-year New Coalition for Food Security strategy that aims to end hunger for up to 15 million people. Within the coalition is a new approach to using food aid to boost development by encouraging people to work rather than just rely on handouts. Called productive safety nets, the government plans to launch the scheme for five million people in January. Tigray, the northern province of Ethiopia that was the epicentre of the 1984 famine and was, at that time, ravaged by a civil war, is home to Birhan. A quarter of its 4 million people still need food aid to survive. Birhan fears that without real help the dependency and quick fix solutions will continue. "I pray this never happens again and I am thankful for all the help we have received," Birhan said from the stone house she shares with her father, stepmother, and six brothers and sisters. "But what we need is schools to educate ourselves, dams for farmers so they are not dependent on the rains. "We need health centres and industries for people to have jobs. We need to be able to stand on our own and not always be reliant on aid."


Reuters 5 Oct 2004 Libya to host a mini-summit on Darfur this month By Salah Sarrar TRIPOLI, Oct 5 (Reuters) - Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi will host a summit on the troubled western Sudanese region of Darfur with the presidents of Chad, Egypt and Nigeria, a Libyan government source said on Tuesday. "A summit of the leaders of three countries neighbouring Sudan - Chad, Egypt and Libya - and the Nigerian president, who is the current chairman of the African Union, will take place in Libya this month," the source told Reuters. The summit was scheduled for Oct. 15 or 17, the source said. Libya had also invited the Sudanese government and the two rebel movements from Darfur, the Justice and Equality Movement and the Sudan Liberation Movement. "The summit will focus on ensuring food supply for the refugees and displaced people in Darfur, security and protection for the regional population and forging a global and lasting solution to the crisis in Darfur," the source said. Darfur rebels took up arms against Khartoum in February 2003, saying the government neglected and marginalised the impverished region. They accuse the government of arming mounted Arab militias, known as Janjaweed, to loot and burn out non-Arab villages in a a campaign of ethnic cleansing. Arab nomads and mostly non-Arab farmers have fought over resources for years in arid Darfur. The Libyan government source said Tripoli was optimistic about the summit outcome because the United Nations, the United States, the European Union, the African Union and the Arab League back the planned summit.

AFP 5 Oct 2004 Sudan's Beshir invited to Darfur mini-summit in Libya KHARTOUM, Oct 5 (AFP) - Libya and the African Union Tuesday invited Sudanese President Omar al-Beshir to a mini-summit in Libya on the Darfur crisis, due to be attended by Sudan's neighbors Chad and Egypt. This came during a meeting between Beshir and Libyan leader Moamer Khadafi's special envoy, Said Arabi Hefiana, and Nigeria's junior foreign minister, Aboubakar Tanko, who is also assistant secretary general of the AU. Hefiana and Tanko delivered the invitation in letters from Khadafi and Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, the current chairman of the AU, which is sponsoring peace talks between Khartoum and Darfur rebels. The official Al-Anbaa daily on Tuesday quoted Foreign Minister Mustafa Osman Ismail as saying the letters also dealt with the situation in Darfur and efforts by the AU to resolve the 20-month conflict there. Hefiana and Tanko flew to Khartoum from Egypt where they delivered a message to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, also inviting him to the summit. Following the meeting, Egyptian presidential spokesman Maged Abdel Fattah told reporters consultations were underway to determine the exact date of the summit, which was to take place "before October 21". The summit was part of ongoing AU efforts to "contain the situation in Darfur", where conflict has left some 50,000 people dead, displaced an estimated 1.4 million and forced nearly 200,000 to flee into neighboring Chad. It also aimed to "fend off the consequences of United Nations Security Council resolutions and consolidate the role of the AU in dealing with the conflict," Abdel Fattah said. The UN Security Council passed a resolution in September threatening sanctions against Sudan's vital oil industry for the government's failure to rein in pro-government Arab militias accused of atrocities in Darfur. The visits of the Libyan and AU envoys coincided with a meeting in Ndjamena, Chad, of the AU's ceasefire committee and representatives from the Sudanese government and the two main rebel groups in Darfur. Ismail told A-Anbaa participants would also discuss the situation in Darfur and ceasefire violations by Sudan and the Darfur rebels. He reiterated his government's acceptance of the Security Council resolution on Darfur calling for an increased number of AU troops in Darfur and broadening their mandate, saying this would help in the process of confidence-building, particularly between the police and displaced persons. Sudan recently agreed that the AU could deploy its troops in camps for displaced persons in Darfur to monitor the activities of the police. Ismail said the move would reassure the displaced, many of who accuse the police of complicity in attacks against them by Arab militias and encourage them to move freely in and out of the camps. The news comes as British Prime Minister Tony Blair prepared to pay a brief visit to Sudan Wednesday for talks with Sudanese leaders on several issues, including the Darfur crisis. mas/sap/al .


IRIN 4 Oct 2004 Obasanjo kicks off Africa's polio vaccination drive in hotspot state [This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations] KANO, 4 October (IRIN) - Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo kicked off a massive, synchronised polio campaign at the weekend, by immunising the baby daughter of the state governor whose vaccination ban helped the crippling disease spread across West Africa. As current president of the African Union, Obasanjo on Saturday launched the new drive to immunise 80 million children in 23 countries from the disease, which can cause paralysis and leaves them consigned to wheelchairs or crutches. His first patient was one-year-old Zaina, daughter of Kano state governor, Ibrahim Shekaru, "It is our resolve that all children aged between 1 and 59 months are immunized against this disease," Obasanjo said. "Let us receive our vaccination teams in our homes, at school and in public places." Figures from the World Health Organisation (WHO) show Nigeria currently accounts for more than 80 percent of all cases of polio worldwide. Shekaru, leader of the mainly Muslim state of Kano, last year outlawed the polio vaccines for 10 months after radical Islamic preachers branded them part of a Western, Christian plot to reduce Nigeria's Muslim population by making them infertile and infecting them with cancer. The ban helped polio spread around Nigeria and ripple across the wider region, derailing international health experts' plans to eradicate the viral disease by the end of 2004. Five times as many children in the region were struck with polio in the first half of 2004 compared with the same period last year. Strains of the virus traced to Nigeria infected children in 12 west and central African countries previously declared polio-free and experts warned the region was on the brink of the largest epidemic in recent years. The latest push to simultaneously vaccinate children around the continent aims to reach 80 million children between 8 and 12 October in 23 countries from Benin to Togo. "(This is) the largest-ever, cross-border polio campaign in history," the Global Polio Eradication Initiative said in a statement. The World Health Organisation said volunteer health workers would comb the countries, going door-to-door, house-to-house, village-to-village, on foot, by car, and by boat to reach every single child under the age of five. Further immunisation rounds will follow in November and throughout 2005.


Hirondelle News Agency (Lausanne) 7 Oct 2004 EU Warns Rwanda on Controversial Genocide Report Kigali The European Union (EU) on Thursday expressed concern about the Rwandan government's response to a controversial parliamentary report on genocide. The report had called for the banning of civil society organizations and prosecution of individuals for harbouring and spreading 'genocide ideology'. "The EU regrets that the Government of Rwanda has not unequivocally stated that those mentioned in the parliamentary report are presumed innocent until the contrary is proven. Individuals have been publicly accused on the basis of information that is insufficiently substantiated. The report therefore has an intimidating impact.", reads a statement by the EU presidency. The parliamentary report recommends the dissolution of five Rwandan Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) including a prominent human rights organization; Rwandese League for the Promotion and Defence of Human Rights (LIPRODHOR). It also suggests government warnings against the other NGO's, including three international NGOs, schools and church institutions. Furthermore, the report asks for the prosecution of members of these organisations involved in the "dissemination of the genocide ideology". The Rwandan government last month commended the parliament on the "initiative" and called for "judicial authorities to examine the contents of the report and prosecute where necessary". The EU welcomed the announcement of further investigation but said these should be completed "as expeditiously as possible". The EU also expressed concern at "the liberal use of the terms 'ideology of genocide' and 'divisionism'" and called on the Rwandan government "to clarify the definition of these terms and how they relate to the laws on discrimination and sectarianism and to the freedom of speech in general." Observers in Kigali say that although there are a few Rwandans who still support the genocide, the government is perceived as using labels of 'genocide ideology' and 'divisionism' to silence political opposition.

Xinhua 21 Oct 2004 UN tribunal witness murdered in Rwanda A witness who was expected to appear at the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR)in Arusha, Tanzania, has been murdered in cold blood, the state-run Radio Rwanda reported Thursday. Reports said that the victim Bosco Nyemanzi, resident of Kaduhadistrict in Gikongoro province south of Rwanda, was a former genocide convict. He was murdered Tuesday when unknown men broke into his house late at night and hit him several times with metallic bars. It is said he was targeted since he was due to testify against a suspect at the ICTR. Police has arrested Ana Marie Mukashema, wife to the deceased, who is suspected to have connived with others still at large in the murder plot. The murder has attracted attention of several government officials, including Internal Affairs Minister Christophe Bazivamoand Justice Minister Edda Mukabagwiza, who made an immediate fact-finding visit to the area together with Commissioner General of Police Frank Mugambage and Prosecutor General Jean du-Dieu Mucyo. They addressed residents at Kaduha district headquarters, whom they assured of security, and said further investigation will be continued. Bazivamo advised Kaduha residents to cooperate with police and local authorities and report anyone suspected of engaging in divisive tendencies, reported the radio. "Those people who choose to murder others in order to hide their roles in the 1994 genocide, are just adding more offenses totheir crimes and government will not hesitated to arrest and charge them," the radio quoted Bazivamo, but said the task requires joint efforts with the general public. Several cases of killings have been registered in the past fewmonth mainly targeting the 1994 survivors who currently give testimonies of what happened in genocide.

Hirondelle News Agency (Lausanne) 20 Oct 2004 Prosecution Witness Assassinated in Rwanda Arusha A man was last week assassinated in Rwanda one month after returning from Arusha, Tanzania, where he had testified at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). Bosco Nyemanzi, a confessed genocide criminal, was killed last Thursday at his home in Kaduha, Gikongoro (southern Rwanda) after he returned from giving evidence against Colonel Aloys Simba, a genocide suspect whose trial was adjourned last month. According to the Rwandan Senior attorney Emmanuel Rukangira, eight suspects, including the victim's wife, Anne-Marie Mukashema, have been arrested in connection with the death. Rukangira said that Mukashema "was cooperating with the investigations". But he revealed that one of the suspects had escaped from custody. On Wednesday morning by the spokesperson of the ICTR, Roland Amoussouga confirmed that the victim had testified against Simba in September under the pseudonym "YH" to protect his identity. He said the motive behind the murder was not yet known. A senior member of the witness protection section of the ICTR went to Kigali on Saturday to investigate the matter and is due to return to Arusha Wednesday evening. Amoussouga however pointed out that there was no evidence yet to link the assassination of Nyemanzi to his testifying at the ICTR. Aloys Simba is a retired Colonel who was close to former President Juvenal Habyarimana and is accused of genocide and crimes against humanity. His trial opened August 30 and was adjourned September 27 after hearing 11 witnesses, including Nyemanzi. The murder took place in Kaduha, a small village close to Gikongoro (south), where two other people who were preparing to testify in the local courts were also murdered last year. According to Rukangira, the victim's wife had told investigators she believed that the motive for the murder "was related to the victim's intended testimony in the Simba trial". "We have also come to learn that the victim intended to testify against many other suspects detained in Rwanda", he added. All the suspects in Bosco Nyemanzi's murder appeared on Tuesday before the High Court of Nyanza in Butare province (southern Rwanda).


AFP 29 Oct 2004 Fifteen dead as Somali regions clash over border dispute MOGADISHU, Oct 29 (AFP) - At least 15 people were killed and scores wounded Friday after fighting erupted over a border dispute between Somaliland and Puntland, two regions in northern Somalia, officials and residents said. It was the first time that the dispute over the territory of Sool denegerated into major hostilities. The fighting pitted government troops from Somaliland, which considers itself an independent state, against fighters loyal to the regional government in neighbouring Puntland. "Some 15 people were killed and scores more wounded by the fighting which is continuing," said Mohamed Said, a resident of Lasanod, the main town in the disputed region. He said the fighting was taking place in the nearby village of Adhi-adeeye. "I can confirm the battle but am unable to give any further details," Ismail Omar Aden, defense minister of the self-declared republic of Somaliland, in northwest Somalia, told journalists in Somaliland's capital, Hargeisa. There were unconfirmed reports that up to 35 people were killed in the fighting. Somaliland, which unilaterally seceded from the rest of Somalia in May 1991, claims Sool as part of its territory, while semi-autonomous Puntland to the east insists the area's residents are Harti, the dominant clan in Puntland. Somaliland has refused to have anything to do with the rest of Somalia, or to recognise the country's newly elected president, Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed, who used to be the president of Puntland.

washingtonpost.com 31 Oct 2004 100 Are Reported Killed In Violence in Somalia Breakaway Region Rejects New Leader By Hussein Ali Nur Reuters Sunday, October 31, 2004; Page A24 HARGEYSA, Somalia, Oct. 30 -- About 100 people were reported killed on Saturday in fighting between Puntland and the rival Somali territory of Somaliland. The hostilities erupted after Puntland's leader was elected president in a new effort to reunite Somalia under a national government. Abdullahi Yusuf has pledged to work peacefully with breakaway Somaliland as he tries to restore order to Somalia, which descended into anarchy in 1991 following the overthrow of dictator Mohamed Siad Barre. But his election on Oct. 10 alarmed Somaliland, which declared full independence from Somalia in 1991. Many people in Somaliland view Yusuf as a serious foe because he was the leader of Puntland, a neighboring autonomous territory that has land disputes with Somaliland. Somaliland authorities warned Yusuf on Oct. 12 against any attempted aggression and said they were on alert against any move to bring Somaliland back into Somalia. "Full mobilization of our soldiers is going on and will continue until Abdullahi Yusuf's forces leave our territory," a spokesman for the Somaliland president said on Saturday, adding that fighting had stopped because of heavy rains. A spokesman for Somaliland's Defense Office said the death toll from the fighting, which erupted on Friday at the village of Adi-Addeye, about 20 miles north of Las Anod, had risen to 109. It was not immediately clear whether that figure referred to combat casualties or civilians or both. The spokesman said nine Somaliland soldiers were killed in the fighting. Puntland and Somaliland have fought sporadic clashes for years over the ownership of several eastern areas of Somaliland claimed by Puntland's leaders on the basis of ethnicity. Las Anod has been a flash point during previous fighting. Matt Bryden, a senior analyst with the policy research organization International Crisis Group, said Yusuf's elevation to the presidency had heightened tensions between the two territories. "It is probably going to get worse unless dialogue is started," he said. Yusuf was elected head of state by Somali lawmakers after two years of intermittent peace talks, held in Kenya because of insecurity at home. He has not yet been able to return to Somalia because of the continued chaos there, and has asked the African Union to send 20,000 peacekeepers to disarm the militias that control much of the failed state. "The president is very much concerned about the unfortunate clashes that happened yesterday which caused heavy losses of life and property," the head of Somalia's presidential press service, Yusuf Mohamed Ismail, told reporters in Nairobi. Ismail said Yusuf wanted an international fact-finding mission to establish the cause of the fighting and facilitate a cease-fire. Yusuf said in a letter sent to neighboring states and the United Nations on Friday that Puntland had told him Somaliland was waging "an all-out war."

South Africa

News24 SA 11 Oct 2004 SA judge to lead Sudan probe 11/10/2004 11:19 - (SA) Related Articles Ex-SA judge to lead apartheid law suit Cape Town - Former TRC commissioner Dumisa Ntsebeza has been appointed head of a technical team that will advise the United Nation's International Commission of Inquiry on the genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan, SABC reported on Monday. Ntsebeza was one of five judicial officials selected from five countries, which include besides South Africa, also Italy, Egypt, Peru, and Pakistan. Ntsebeza said he would use the knowledge he gained from the TRC experience to assist the commission, SABC said. The former judge was the chief investigator in Archbishop Desmond Tutu's Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which probed apartheid's history and recorded hundreds of human rights violations, mainly against blacks. He retired as a judge of the South African Labour Court in August 2002, and left for the United States to lead a team suing foreign corporations for allegedly helping finance the apartheid regime.

Sudan See Libya, United Kingdom

washingtonpost.com 30 Sept 2004 Weary Darfur Villagers Tell of Attack Men in Government Uniforms, Backed by Aircraft, Force Hundreds From Homes By Emily Wax Washington Post Foreign Service Thursday, September 30, 2004; Page A21 HAY DRIG, Sudan, Sept. 29 -- Haggard survivors of fighting in southern Darfur, thorns stuck to their bloody feet, straggled into this refugee community before dawn Wednesday and told harrowing tales of attacks by men in government uniforms who marauded through their villages. "The war is not over," cried out Mohamed Abdullah Ibrahim, 45, his donkey stacked with grain, cooking pots and water jugs. He arrived in Hay Drig along with 245 other refugees who were forced to flee Fashe, 30 miles to the east, seeking shelter under the branches of a wide tree at an encampment here five miles outside Nyala, the capital of South Darfur. Ibrahim walked among scores of refugees who described attacks that forced them from their homes. Their stories echoed reports by refugees over the past 19 months throughout Darfur. All blamed attacks on the Janjaweed Arab militia, whose fighters are loyal to the Sudanese government in Khartoum, the capital. The accounts of the latest refugees illustrated the difficulty of stopping the guerrilla war in Darfur, a region in western Sudan, despite intense international attention. Nearly 1.5 million people are estimated to have been displaced and another 200,000 are living across the border in refugee camps in Chad. The U.N. Security Council will soon consider sanctions against Sudan and an increase in African Union troops here if the government does not end what has been called the worst humanitarian crisis in the world. The U.S. government has said the atrocities in Sudan amount to genocide. One refugee, Ahmed Ibrahim, 53, described an attack by men on foot and others riding camels. "They were Janjaweed in government uniforms," said Ibrahim, who arrived at Hay Drig at 5 a.m. "Then we saw land cruisers following. Then the bombers and helicopter gunships came overhead." "It was nearing harvest time. I had a thousand head of camels, cows and goats," Ibrahim recounted as a crowd of refugees gathered. "We knew this was happening around Darfur. But it had not reached us yet. This is a calamity." The claims of attacks by government-backed militia forces were not possible to verify independently, although Sudanese police stopped a reporter and aid workers 15 miles down the road toward Fashe as the sounds of gunfire rang out. As a helicopter gunship flew by, police ordered the group to turn its cars around quickly and leave the area. Nearby, five women accompanying a gaggle of children said their truck had been attacked on the way from Fashe to the Hay Drig refugee camp. Aisha Mohamed, 45, collapsed, weeping, and said her mother was shot in the face by a man wearing a government uniform. In the rush to leave, her mother was left behind, and Mohamed didn't know whether she had survived. "They ambushed us," she said. "We couldn't even escape. We were walking all night, I couldn't find my mother. I was feeling sick." Mohamed told friends who gathered around her that she wanted to go back to find her mother. But they wouldn't let her, restraining her as she cried. The fighting in Darfur broke out last year when two African rebel groups, charging that their tribes faced political and economic discrimination, attacked police stations and military outposts. The government is accused of backing the Janjaweed, an Arabic term for "devils on horseback," to crush the rebellion. The government contends that the Janjaweed are criminals beyond their control. The fighting has left parts of Darfur in tatters. Thousands of women have told aid workers they were raped by Arab militiamen, and African and Arab neighbors say it will take a generation to mend relations. A government official told the official Sudan News Agency that the recent violence was caused by African rebel groups fighting government forces in Darfur. The official, Ibrahim Mahmoud Hamid, minister of humanitarian affairs, accused the rebels of launching attacks on the Damba region, 100 miles south of Nyala, wounding an unknown number of people. The government maintains that reports of human suffering are exaggerated in Darfur and that characterizations of genocide are bogus. Sudanese officials accuse U.S. politicians of overstating the situation in Darfur during the election campaign in an effort to portray concern for the plight of Africans. In addition, they say that African rebel groups are trying to overthrow the Sudanese government. Government officials cite reports of a failed coup last weekend as proof that the situation in Darfur was exaggerated by anti-government rebel groups who want to take power. A foreign diplomat in Khartoum suggested that reports of the coup attempt could actually be "Sudanese theater and an attempt by the government to distract attention away from human suffering in Darfur." The refugees who arrived at this squalid camp on Wednesday said countries around the world needed to do more. Hay Drig, a poor community even before it became a magnet for refugees four months ago, has swelled into a maze of tightly built huts resembling fragile bird nests, with a population that has grown to 11,000. There are few services, with international medical workers visiting only once a week. The situation is similar in other areas, according to relief workers, who said that 5,000 people forced to flee their homes had arrived at camps throughout Darfur in the last week. On Wednesday, the shocked village elders of Fashe held long meetings at Hay Drig, coming to terms with the fact that they, too, had now joined the ranks of Darfur's desperate refugees. They made lists of stolen animals and wondered what to do. Teenage girls unloaded their donkeys, searching for tin drinking cups and jerry cans to collect water. Pregnant women sat perspiring in the sun, and children built makeshift shelters from mats, twigs and shreds of clothing.

washingtonpost.com 1 Oct 2004 A Call to End Unrest in Sudan Report to U.N. Urges Deployment of Foreign Peacekeepers By Colum Lynch Washington Post Staff Writer Friday, October 1, 2004; Page A23 UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 30 -- Sudanese-backed Arab militias continue to terrorize hundreds of thousands of black African civilians with impunity in the Darfur region of Sudan, lending greater urgency to international calls for the deployment of thousands of foreign peacekeepers there, the United Nations' top human rights official said Thursday. Louise Arbour, the U.N. high commissioner for human rights, told the U.N. Security Council that displaced civilians are routinely harassed and intimidated by government security forces that have been sent to Darfur to protect them. Arbour, a former Canadian Supreme Court justice who just returned from a visit to Darfur, said that local police and courts have failed to respond to reports of violence and rape near camps housing displaced people. "The government continues to convey neither a sense of urgency nor an acknowledgment of the magnitude of the human rights crisis in Darfur," Arbour told the council in a closed-door session. "In short, my mission came away from Sudan gravely concerned that the government, its security forces -- particularly the police and the judicial system -- are failing the people of Darfur." Arbour, who was accompanied on her visit by the U.N. special adviser for the prevention of genocide, Juan Mendez, stopped short of declaring the violence genocide, noting that a new commission of inquiry being established by U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan will make that formal determination. The Bush administration has accused the Sudanese government and the militia of perpetrating genocide in Darfur. But Mendez told the 15-nation council: "Crimes against humanity, war crimes and breaches of the laws of war have probably occurred on a large and systematic scale. We do not believe that we have turned a corner on preventing further violations, and we must remain vigilant to this end." The crisis in Darfur began in February 2003, when two rebel groups, the Sudanese People's Liberation Army and the Justice and Equality Movement, launched a series of attacks against government outposts, citing discrimination against the region's black civilians. The Sudanese authorities organized and supported Arab militias, known as the Janjaweed, as they swept through the region, killing tens of thousands of civilians and driving more than 1 million from their homes. The World Health Organization estimates that 6,000 to 10,000 civilians are dying each month from violence and disease. Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo said last weekend that the African Union, which has 380 troops monitoring a shaky cease-fire in Darfur, is prepared to send as many as 5,000 more to help defuse the crisis. But he said that Western governments would have to come up with hundred of millions of dollars to support the mission. Sudan's foreign minister, Mustafa Osman Ismail, denied that his country's armed forces are involved in the violence in a lengthy closed-door speech to the 15-nation council Thursday afternoon. He said Sudan is struggling to stop the militia. Ismail told reporters after the meeting that Khartoum has agreed to an African Union request to allow more than 3,500 troops, including 1,000 police, into Darfur. Ismail said that they would be given a stronger mandate that would allow them to monitor police activities and to help them ensure the protection of civilians. John C. Danforth, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said that Sudan would have to do a better job of proving its commitment to stop the violence. "This is a show-me situation," he said. Danforth also challenged assertions by Sudan's president, Omar Hassan Bashir, which were published Thursday in the Egyptian newspaper Al-Ahram, that the United States helped arm and train Darfur rebels. It is "baloney," Danforth said. But Arbour's report did little to increase support for tougher action by the council, which has twice threatened to consider imposing sanctions on the government if it failed to rein in the militia. China, Russia, Pakistan and Algeria continue to oppose U.S. efforts to threaten sanctions on Sudan. "I don't know why we keep speaking about sanctions," said Pakistan's U.N. ambassador, Munir Akram. "We think it's the wrong direction. We have to evoke more cooperation, and it has to be done in a measured way. We shouldn't go overboard."

WP 1 Oct 2004; Page A26 Sudan President Says U.S. Trained Rebels KHARTOUM, Sudan -- The United States helped train and arm rebels from western Sudan who rose up against the Sudanese government last year, Lt. Gen. Omar Hassan Bashir, the Sudanese president, said in remarks published in an Egyptian newspaper Thursday. "Who else than the United States is behind this? . . . They took rebels to Eritrea and set up training camps for them, spent money on them, armed them," Bashir told the Al-Ahram weekly when asked about foreign involvement in the Darfur region. Slimane Hadj Abderrahmane was returned to Denmark. _A State Department official in Washington, speaking on condition of anonymity, dismissed the charge. "The whole purpose of the U.S. policy is to end the violence in Sudan," the official said. "We are not funding, training, providing armaments to, supporting in any way, shape or form the rebels." The United States has labeled the violence in Darfur genocide, blaming the Sudanese government and the Arab Janjaweed militia, which Khartoum has been accused of arming.

NYT 2 Oct 2004 Sudan Agrees to Allow 3,500 African Union Troops Into Darfur By SOMINI SENGUPTA KHARTOUM, Sudan, Oct. 1 - Sudan has agreed to allow 3,500 African Union troops into war-ravaged western Darfur as a means of building confidence among civilians who, United Nations officials have repeatedly said, no longer trust their own government. Among other things, the African Union monitors will be allowed to police the Sudanese police. The agreement represents the largest step taken by this government to comply with the demands of the United Nations Security Council. It is already under biting international pressure, most notably the threat of sanctions, should it fail to act to restore security in Darfur. The war in the west has killed tens of thousands of people and displaced nearly 1.5 million, mostly black Africans, from their homes. It began in early 2003 with a rebel uprising that demanded greater political and economic rights for the long-marginalized west. The Arab-led government cracked down, using its own military and arming private Arab militias. The United States has called the government's actions genocide. The United Nations Security Council, in a resolution passed in September, ordered an inquiry commission to determine whether the violence in Darfur met the criteria for genocide. The government's decision comes as the Security Council prepares to review a report next week on Sudan's progress made by the secretary general's special representative on Sudan, Jan Pronk. The swift expansion of African Union troops and the broadening of their mandate has been among his crucial demands. "We need many thousands of African Union troops with a broad mandate, quick deployment, big numbers," Mr. Pronk said in an interview last week. Until now, Sudan has resolutely opposed any foreign intervention in security matters and allowed only a handful of African Union soldiers to monitor a cease-fire agreement; in the western region roughly the size of France, there are 68 unarmed monitors and 308 armed troops to protect them. In a speech to the Council on Foreign Relations in New York on Friday, the Sudanese foreign minister, Mustafa Osman Ismail, said his government had asked the African Union to work with its security forces in Darfur "so that we will make sure that there is no violation of human rights, there is no killing, there is building of confidence." "We need to expand their mandate and to give them more mandates, for protection, mandate for checking, mandate for investigating, and yes, they need such mandates," he added. Adam Thiam, the spokesman for the chairman of the African Union Commission in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, said in a telephone interview on Friday evening that deployment would begin as soon as possible. Both Nigeria and Rwanda have committed the necessary number of troops, but logistical support like trucks and helicopters remain an obstacle. Mr. Pronk's spokeswoman, Radhia Achour, welcomed the government's move as a "major step forward." "We do believe it will help a great deal in restoring the confidence between the population of Darfur and the government of Sudan and between Sudan and the international community," she said in an interview here. "We would call on the government of Sudan to maintain this spirit of cooperation and to sustain this level of cooperation once this mission is deployed." The broadened mandate of the African Union would include monitoring the Sudanese police, but would fall significantly short of authorization to protect civilians. That kind of mandate, under Chapter 7 of the United Nations Charter, has not been discussed and is unlikely to be accepted by Sudan, United Nations officials have said.

NYT 3 Oct 2004 In Sudan, No Clear Difference Between Arab and African By SOMINI SENGUPTA KHARTOUM, Sudan — ABDALLA ADAM KHATIR, 50, is from Darfur, in western Sudan. His grandmother was an Arab, her grandfather was a member of an African tribe. He calls himself an African. As a boy in Kabkabiya, deep in the heart of Darfur, he traveled three days by camel caravan to reach the nearest town with an intermediate school. The caravan was led by an Arab, but at no point did he or his family feel unsafe. As a student here in the capital in the 1960's, he took up the banner of Arab-African unity, led by the Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nasser. But today, Mr. Khatir finds himself wrestling with the gut-wrenching fact that, in the past two years, 102 of his relatives have been killed in Darfur by those he calls Arabs. Yet in the end, Mr. Khatir, a writer and a member of the Darfur Writers and Journalists Association, does not view this as a war between Arabs and Africans. He blames it squarely on the government in Khartoum. Its leaders, he says, have deliberately inflamed nascent ethnic divisions in a bid to stay in power. War broke out in western Sudan in early 2003, when a rebel insurrection, frustrated by what it called the Sudan government's marginalization of Darfur, demanded economic and political reforms. The government swiftly struck back, deploying Arab militias across the region. The violence has killed tens of thousands of people and displaced around 1.5 million. Across Darfur, it was largely the villages of Africans that were torched, and with some exceptions, it was largely tribes that call themselves African that crowded into refugee camps or fled across the border to Chad. The United States and others have accused the attackers of committing "genocide," the systematic destruction of a national or ethnic group. Juan Mendez, the United Nations Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, has said that crimes against humanity and war crimes "probably occurred on a large and systematic scale." The question is how does race or ethnicity fit in. For generations, race itself has not been all that significant in Darfurian society. People regularly referred to themselves by their tribe affiliation, and rarely as just "Arab" or "African." Arabs have been in the region for almost 1,000 years, and the term has been used mostly to describe those who speak Arabic, as opposed to one of the dozens of local languages, or to those who lead nomadic, not agricultural, existences. "The implication that these are two different races, one indigenous and the other not, is dangerous," said Mahmood Mamdani, director of the Institute of African Studies at Columbia University. But the Darfur crisis has laid bare an unspoken Arab-African fault line that runs across this arid belt of Africa - from Mauritania in the west, to Sudan in the east. Racial consciousness is, in fact, embedded in the history of central Africa. Sudan, for example, was once a center of the Arab slave trade. In Mauritania, in West Africa, blackness, which was associated with slavery, is today associated with servitude. Referring to underlying racial division, Breyten Breytenbach, the South African writer, said, "It is one of the most ambiguous problems and greatest taboos on the continent." What may have surprised everyone in Sudan was that as soon as the rebellion in Darfur began, divisions were drawn. By and large it was Arab tribes in Darfur that rallied to the government's side (some say in exchange for promises of land and power), while the government's political opponents raised the African banner and declared allegiance with the rebels. Those lines could harden even more. The racial character given to the fighting in Darfur by the government and the rebels has found many willing listeners - and the appeal to racial solidarity could extend itself to Chad or further afield to Niger or Mali, where the competition between farmers and nomadic herders could turn even uglier. "There's been a long-running effort to suppress recognition of racial tension," argued Salih Booker, executive director of Africa Action, a Washington-based advocacy group. "It is something the continent has to grapple with." But racial chauvinism, once let loose in a society, can be hard to put back in the bottle. And its effects can be murderous. It is foolish, said Mr. Khatir, for any Sudanese to consider himself an Arab. "We are not Arabs, not Sudanese - not even those who are telling themselves they are Arabs," he said. "I am an African," he added, "who has absorbed Arab and Islamic culture. The way I see it, our people, Arab tribes and African tribes, are victims of the national policies of this government. We are all victims."

washingtonpost.com 3 Oct 2004 Editorial: As Darfur Waits Sunday, October 3, 2004; Page B06 LIKE A RESCUE squad that hears of an accident but then stops by a 7-Eleven for coffee, the world is ambling toward Darfur, the western Sudanese province where genocide is underway. It's been months since the need for an African Union force to protect Darfur's civilians became obvious, and still there are only 300 or so African Union troops there. With each week, more women are raped and more villages attacked. On Thursday relief officials in one camp for displaced people reported 5,000 recent arrivals, the product of attacks on 10 villages by the government-backed Janjaweed militia. And still a robust contingent of foreign troops is awaited. Why the delay? Partly because of views such as those of Pakistan's U.N. ambassador, Munir Akram. "It has to be done in a measured way," the envoy said recently of the world's response to genocide. "We shouldn't go overboard." But the delay is also made possible by the artful blurring of responsibility for bringing it about. Nobody is held accountable. Sudan's government, which has spent weeks excluding humanitarian workers from Darfur and promising to repel foreign peacekeepers with force, now says it is delighted to welcome an African Union force into its territory. In a briefing to the U.N. Security Council on Thursday, Sudan's foreign minister insisted that his government wanted foreign troops as soon as possible, and that it would be happy to accept more than the 3,500 that the African Union is offering. What Sudan's government does not advertise is the restrictive mandate under which these troops would be deployed. The foreigners should, in Sudan's view, be restricted to monitoring a cease-fire. They should not presume to protect civilians but should report incidents to Sudan's government -- which has proved itself utterly uninterested in protecting its own civilians. Then there is the African Union itself. Its leaders have been offering loudly to send troops to Darfur. But now that they are faced with a government that welcomes them, they say it will take another two or three weeks to win approval from all member governments for the deployment. In another measure of the African Union's urgent commitment to combating genocide, its officials recently delayed a meeting on Darfur on the ground that they had not received the per diem they thought due them. Finally there is the role of the United States and its allies. The Bush administration is comfortable pushing resolutions through the Security Council and then calling upon the African Union to deploy: "My hope is that the African Union moves rapidly to help save lives," Mr. Bush declared in the debate on Thursday. But if he is serious about that hope, he needs to try harder to make the deployment happen. The United States needs to ensure that the mandate under which peacekeepers deploy is not restrictive. It must encourage the African Union to make haste. And it must get ready for the time when the African Union comes up with a firm deployment proposal. The African troops will need vehicles, helicopters and prefabricated housing. All this needs to be prepared now, in concert with other members of NATO. Otherwise the interminable delays in getting help to Darfur will stretch out even longer.

UN News Centre 7 Oct 2004 www.un.org/News/ Annan proposes ways to help African Union expand its mission in Darfur, Sudan 4 October 2004 – Secretary-General Kofi Annan has proposed four areas where the United Nations can immediately help the African Union (AU) expand its ceasefire-monitoring mission in the strife-torn Darfur region of Sudan, his spokesman said today. In a letter to AU Commission Chairman Alpha Oumar Konare, Mr. Annan offered support in: setting up a UN assistance cell; pre-screening police for participation in the AU mission; opening a Darfur regional office of the UN Advance Mission in Sudan (UNAMIS); and organizing a pledging conference to fund the enlarged AU mission. The first group of the UN assistance cell, which would be based at the AU's headquarters in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, is expected to arrive there today, according to spokesman Fred Eckhard. The AU is expanding the size and scope of its mission in Darfur, an impoverished region in western Sudan that has been beset by conflict since early last year, from its current size of just over 350 ceasefire monitors and protection troops. The ceasefire is between the Sudanese Government and two local rebel groups, the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), which have been waging conflict against each other since early last year. About 1.45 million Sudanese are internally displaced and another 200,000 are living as refugees in neighbouring Chad because of both the fighting and the brutal attacks against civilians by militias known as the Janjaweed. The militias stand accused of killing and raping thousands of villagers and destroying homes and cropland. At the request of the Security Council, Mr. Annan is setting up a commission of inquiry to investigate whether genocide has taken place in Darfur. Meanwhile, Mr. Annan's Deputy Special Representative for Political Affairs in Sudan, Taye Zerihoun, is travelling to the Chadian capital N'Djamena to attend the latest meeting of the committee monitoring the ceasefire. After the meeting tomorrow Mr. Zerihoun will then head to Nairobi, Kenya, to attend the resumption on Thursday of peace talks designed to resolve the separate long-running civil war in Sudan's south. Those talks are scheduled to resume with a meeting between Sudanese Vice-President Ali Osman Mohammed Taha and John Garang, the chairman of the rebel Sudanese People's Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A).

IRIN 4 Oct 2004 NGOs say 122,800 southerners in need of aid [This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations] NAIROBI, 4 October (IRIN) - Some 122,800 people in southern Sudan desperately need food aid and other basic needs such as health and educational facilities, agricultural tools and clean water, a group of seven NGOs operating in the region said. Launching an appeal for US $434,913 in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, on Friday, John Kwaje, chairman of the New Sudanese Indigenous NGOs (NESI) group said: "The seven NGOs which have made the joint appeal operate in various fields of service. The appeal is to save the areas worst hit by food shortages resulting from the lack of rains or the influx of returnees." "The specific counties which will be covered by the funding will include, Anyuak Kingdom in Pochala, Lianya, Torit, Mundri, Twic county and the Shilluk region," he added. NESI is a consortium of 47 indigenous NGOs working in south Sudan with international NGOs. Victoria Garile, Director of South Sudan Community Association, one of the member NGOs said: "Children are learning under trees [and the] number is increasing as some are coming back from exile." Officials of another NGO, Mak-Deel for Development and Training Association, said: "Pochala county currently is congested with 20,000 refugees and internally displaced persons." Before the "Preparation for Sudan Reconstruction" conference held in Oslo, Norway, in September, representatives of the Government of Sudan and the Sudan People 's Liberation Movement/Army had urged the international communities to provide $300 million in aid to cover the urgent needs of people in southern Sudan. They said funds were needed to, among other things, assist about one million or more people who were expected to return home once a final peace accord is signed in the south. The Sudan Relief and Rehabilitation Commission had said it had already registered 1.5 million returnees in South Sudan.

ICG 5 Oct 2004 International Crisis Group Sudan's dual crises: Refocusing on IGAD Africa Briefing OVERVIEW As the Darfur crisis understandably preoccupies the international community, inadequate attention is being paid to ending Sudan's 21-year old civil war between the Khartoum government and the mainly southern insurgency led by the SPLA (Sudan People's Liberation Movement/Army). The peace process mediated by the regional organisation IGAD (Intergovernmental Authority on Development), looked close to finality in June 2004 but is now at risk. The draft agreement negotiated at Naivasha contains provisions that can assist a political solution in Darfur. The two sets of issues are closely related and need to be dealt with equally and urgently. However, unless current dynamics change, and the UN Security Council puts more pressure upon Khartoum to conclude the IGAD agreement, war could soon resume across the country. If the government chooses to delay conclusion of the peace agreement when the IGAD negotiations resume on 7 October, the six protocols already signed but not yet in force may well begin to unravel -- under pressure from regime hardliners and intellectuals in the North who argue that too many concessions were made to the SPLA (Sudan People's Liberation Movement/Army), and from elements within the SPLA who never trusted the regime to keep its word and believe it has been weakened by Darfur. If this happens, new fronts in a war that has already cost two million lives are likely to emerge in the Nuba Mountains, Southern Blue Nile and the east. If the government chooses cooperation, peace in Sudan could be secured before the end of the year. Wrapping up the IGAD (Naivasha) agreement would lay the groundwork for further understandings with the umbrella opposition group, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), and, more importantly, provide models for a Darfur resolution and begin the process towards democratisation and national elections. However, indications are the regime is leaning toward further intransigence. The signals it is sending on IGAD are mixed at best, suggesting it is stalling in an effort to persuade the international community to relax its Darfur demands. Khartoum also has obstructed the deployment of a sizeable African Union (AU) force with a specific mandate to protect civilians in Darfur, while its effort to link disarmament of Janjaweed militia to the cantonment of the Darfur rebels helped stymie recent AU-mediated talks. While Foreign Minister Mustafa Osman Ismail, adopted a conciliatory approach before the Security Council on 29 September 2004, pledging cooperation with an AU force, there remains much ambiguity about what that will mean in practice. Khartoum appears to calculate that commercial and sovereignty considerations will ensure that most countries and international institutions will apply no more than rhetorical pressure. It encourages the perception that if serious pressure is applied, it would be counter-productive, giving advantages to putative "hardliners" or even causing the regime to crack, leaving a failed state in its wake. These tactics have served the regime well since it seized power in 1989. The lesson of those fifteen years, however, is that when the government has been the target of serious pressure with a specific objective, it has modified its behaviour. It is a pragmatic regime that will do what it has to in order to survive, including choosing cooperation rather than attempting to impose unilateral solutions. The international community should act on a number of fronts to achieve a comprehensive solution to Sudan's multiple and interconnected problems, one that deals equally with the IGAD peace process and Darfur. The Security Council should give itself further leverage on Darfur by moving quickly to deploy the first elements of the International Commission of Inquiry it established by its resolution of 18 September 2004. If there is not concrete progress on its Darfur demands by the end of October, especially the AU protection force, the Council should impose an arms embargo on the Sudanese government, an assets freeze on companies owned by the ruling party that do business abroad, and a travel ban on senior Sudanese officials. Diplomatic pressure must simultaneously be escalated to produce a swift conclusion on the IGAD (Naivasha) process. The Security Council needs to state clearly that if the parties do not make progress when they resume the IGAD negotiations on 7 October and fail to conclude a final agreement by the end of the year, it will assess responsibility and take appropriate decisions. Other issues must also be addressed, particularly the complications presented by the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA), the brutal Ugandan insurgency whose depredations have often been supported by Khartoum in pursuit of its war aims in the South. Ultimately, the regime must understand that meaningful penalties can only be avoided or removed if it acts quickly and constructively on both the IGAD agreement and Darfur. It should not be allowed to pick and choose which issues, or parts of issues, it wishes to move on, playing these off against others. This is the moment for it to decide its path -- and firmness in New York and key capitals is necessary to inform its choice. Full Report (pdf* format - 117 KB)

AP 5 Oct 2004 Janjaweed Says Sudan Government Pays Them MISTIRIA, Sudan (AP) -- They wear uniforms without insignia, travel a rolling countryside of charred and emptied villages on camels, horses or pickup trucks with mounted machine guns, and call themselves ``the Quick and the Horrible.'' International monitors and non-Arab African farmers who accuse them of raping, killing and burning call them something else: Janjaweed. Fighters at this stronghold -- visited by journalists Tuesday for the first time since Darfur's war began -- belong to the government-allied Arab militia that international monitors blame for the worst atrocities of the 20-month-old war. The Darfur war has killed more than 50,000 people and driven 1.4 million others from their homes. Almost all of the displaced are non-Arab Africans, targets of what the United States says is a genocidal campaign by Khartoum's Arab-dominated government. Sudan is accused of coordinating military aerial bombing runs with ground raids by the Arab militia in the attacks on Darfur's non-Arab villages, although all sides say mass attacks on civilians have eased under international scrutiny. The Sudanese government describes its allies in Darfur as militias hastily organized to defend against rebels. The fighters known as Janjaweed, it says, are renegades and bandits, and it has no ties to those men. But international organizations and the victims of the violence say the fighters in Mistiria are the Janjaweed. The fighters in Mistiria said Tuesday they have close ties to the government -- in coordination, sympathies and the salaries of about $20 a month they collect. ``The government called on us to defend our land, and the tribes responded,'' said fighter Ina Saleh, a member of the Arab Rizigat tribe, wearing a uniform with no marks or name tag. ``We responded, like the other tribes.'' Mistiria, in northern Darfur, 16 miles west of the town of Kabkabiyeh, is identified by foreign governments and international rights groups as the birthplace of the Janjaweed. In February 2003, Sudan's government sent out a plea for fighters to help combat two non-Arab rebel groups that had taken up arms in western Darfur, the international community says, in accounts backed up by the fighters. Arab tribal leader Musa Hilal, who lived in Mistiria, answered that plea, rallying men of several Arab tribes, training them and arming them, they say. In all, some 2,000 tribal fighters responded to the government call, most from Hilal's tribe, said Omer el Amin, a lawyer in Kabkabiyeh representing Hilal and other men now accused as alleged Janjaweed. In Mistiria, they called themselves the Border Intelligence Division, and answered to Hilal, el Amin said. The same group also calls itself the Second Reconnaissance Brigade, or the Quick and the Horrible, say officers of the African Union, a 53-nation bloc whose monitors are inspecting compliance with a repeatedly violated cease-fire. None of the fighters identify themselves as Janjaweed. The term is used by the international community for some of the Arab militia fighters, including Hilal's, but is seen here as an insult, reserved for bandits before Darfur's conflict began. With heavy international attention to accusations of genocide committed by the Janjaweed, Hilal is now in seclusion in the capital, under close watch by Sudanese officials, those in contact with him say. The Border Intelligence Division, once spread out along Darfur's border with Chad, has pulled much of its strength back to Mistiria. Government forces are firmly in control here, and the men allegedly recruited by Hilal are safe from any rebel attack and most outside scrutiny, other than the African Union monitors. On Tuesday, men identifying themselves as members of the Border Intelligence group lolled in the shade of an open-sided shelter at the brigade's headquarters, while their leaders met with the cease-fire monitors. A handful of the fighters interviewed under scrutiny of their field commanders and Sudanese military officers variously said they were part of civil patrols, known as mujahedeen -- holy warriors -- or part of the regular military. The men and their officers said they were supplied and paid by the central government, but some, like fighter Mohamed Hamdan, could not identify their commanders in the military. Hamdan contradicted himself repeatedly about when he joined his unit; he and Saleh both initially gave dates years in advance of Darfur's conflict. Both eventually said, however, that they took up arms in response to a government call to fight in 2003, when Darfur's rebel groups rose up. ``The government called us to defend,'' said Hamdan, a member of the Arab Mahmeed tribe. As he spoke, men identifying themselves as members of the division strolled the town's weekly market, where camels for sale crowded together. Their local leader, Sgt. Abdul Waheed Saeed, stood among the stalls, answering journalists' questions about whether he and his men feared international prosecution as accused Janjaweed. ``If I'm given to the court, I'll be given with all the government,'' Saeed said. ``Because we are all doing this together.''

Reuters 5 Oct 2004 UN Council Shies Away from Oil Sanctions on Sudan UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The U.N. Security Council on Tuesday focused on African Union troops as a way out of the Darfur crisis, ignoring its earlier threat of oil sanctions against Sudan for atrocities against civilians. U.S. Ambassador John Danforth, the most critical envoy of Khartoum on the council, said it was important to get as many African troops as possible in Darfur. The council last month had threatened sanctions if Sudan did not take action to protect civilians. But Danforth told reporters, ``I think right now we have to keep our eye on the ball,'' adding: ``The focus now is on the African Union. Danforth spoke after the 15-member council was briefed by Jan Pronk, the special U.N. envoy in Sudan, who drafted a report issued late on Monday under U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan's name. Pronk told the council in an open briefing that the Sudanese government had not improved security for African civilians in Darfur or prosecuted perpetrators of atrocities as the council had demanded. He said the cease-fire between rebels and the government was broken constantly but that militia, allied with the government, caused most of the civilian deaths in early September. ``Toward the end of the month militia attacks became less frequent,'' he said. ``In the same period, however, armed banditry rose at an alarming rate, endangering both the local population and aid convoys.'' Rebels began an uprising in Darfur in February 2003 after years of skirmishes between mainly African farmers and Arab nomads over land and water in an area as large as France. ARAB MILITIA The government turned to the Arab militia, known as Janjaweed, to help suppress the rebels. Many African villagers were killed, raped and robbed. Some 1.4 million people have been uprooted from their homes and 50,000 have died, Sudan's ambassador, Elfatih Erwa, told reporters his country had agreed to let in about 3,500 African Union troops, police and observers, whose very presence is to prevent further abuses. He also wondered if the United States was serious about labeling the crisis genocide, saying that would force them to send in troops rather than use the Darfur conflict ``for political reasons.'' Pronk called for a political solution in Sudan, especially in the separate crisis in the south where Khartoum has promised a peace pact for years to end the 21-year-old civil war. Pronk and Danforth believe a deal in the south would serve as a blueprint for Darfur. In Annan's report on Darfur as well as Pronk's presentation, the United Nations said Sudan had not gone back on any earlier commitments but did not say what they were. However, Annan's report said the government made no further progress in September in stopping attacks on civilians, disarming militias, and prosecuting perpetrators of abuse. ``Today, still increasing numbers of the population of Darfur are exposed, without any protection from the government, to hunger, fear and violence,'' Annan said. ``It goes without saying that implementing Security Council resolutions is obligatory.'' On humanitarian aid, the U.N. report said the situation had deteriorated since the end of August because more and more people were affected by the fighting. Earlier fears that the number of people touched by the conflict could reach two million ``are close to being realized,'' requiring aid groups to feed and shelter more people than they helped in August, it said.

BBC 12 Oct 2004 Landmine kills Darfur aid workers Some 1.4 million people have been displaced in the conflict Two aid workers have been killed in Sudan's Darfur region after their vehicle hit a landmine. The two, one British, the other from Sudan, were working for the UK's Save the Children agency, when they died in rebel-held territory near Ummbaru. This is reported to be the first death of a western aid worker in the 20-month conflict, which has pitted black Africans against Arab militias. An estimated 50,000 people have died in what some say is a genocide. Some 1.4 million have also been made homeless as a result of attacks by pro-government Arab Janjaweed militias. The Janjaweed are accused of killing thousands of black African civilians and emptying villages as part of a campaign against rebels in Darfur. Walked for help "The victims of the blast were humanitarians, whose presence in Darfur was motivated by the wish to assist people affected by the conflict," said Jan Pronk, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan's special representative to Sudan. He said that both the Sudanese army and the rebel Sudan Liberation Movement/Army (SLM/A) had been notified of the trip. "No words are sufficient to describe the loss of two valued colleagues whose work and efforts in North Darfur brought much to many children and their families caught up in this crisis," said Save the Children director general Mike Aaronson. "At this time our thoughts go out to the families of our colleagues." The two aid workers have not been identified following the explosion, which happened on Sunday. "Another Sudanese worker was injured in the incident and walked several miles to the nearest town to get help. The two others died in the vehicle," said a Save the Children spokeswoman. There are some 700 international aid workers in Darfur, along with thousands of Sudanese. Violence continues Mr Pronk last week told the UN's Security Council that Sudan's government has failed to keep its promise to end violence in Darfur over the past month. He said attacks on civilians continued and that both pro-government forces and rebel groups had broken a truce. Mr Pronk said the army had continued its attacks, sometimes with helicopter gunships and neither the government nor the rebels had respected the ceasefire signed on 8 April. Sudan has now said it will welcome more troops from the African Union. But the UN envoy said these troops should not only monitor the ceasefire but ensure the safety of the displaced, oversee the disarming of fighters and act as a buffer between civilians and possible attackers. Libya is planning to host a mini-summit on the Darfur crisis later in October.

BBC 12 Oct 2004 Thousands more flee Darfur homes A month of fresh violence in the Sudanese region of Darfur has driven more than 200,000 people from their homes, the United Nations has said. Insecurity is also blocking aid to the 1.5 million displaced people inside the region, according to the UN's humanitarian co-ordinator for Sudan. Manuel Aranda Da Silva said robberies of aid workers were on the rise. The UN has threatened Sudan with sanctions if it fails to halt violence in Darfur, scene of a recent rebellion. Security is probably becoming the main constraint to the delivering of humanitarian assistance Manuel Aranda Da Silva UN humanitarian co-ordinator for Sudan UN Secretary General Kofi Annan appointed a panel this month to investigate reports of genocide in Darfur, a remote, arid region the size of France where some 50,000 people have died in the past 18 months. The government is accused of failing to rein in the Janjaweed, an ethnic Arab militia blamed for killing thousands of black African civilians and emptying villages as part of a campaign against local rebels. The deaths in a landmine blast of two aid workers, a Briton and his Sudanese colleague, have highlighted the dangers facing humanitarian agencies. Dangerous trend Aid efforts a few months ago were hampered by logistical problems but now insecurity seems to be the chief obstacle, Mr Da Silva told Reuters news agency in Khartoum. "Security is probably becoming the main constraint to the delivering of humanitarian assistance in Darfur." There had, he added, been a "negative trend" of armed robberies against humanitarian workers in Darfur in the past three weeks. "This is a general trend that we are worried about," he said. Despite a fragile ceasefire signed between the government and the rebels in April, ethnic conflict, attacks on civilians and clashes between Sudanese armed forces and rebels have all increased, Mr Da Silva said. The UN panel appointed by Mr Annan has been given three months to report back on the situation . The US has already spoken of genocide in Darfur while human rights organisations have said attacks on civilians there amount to war crimes.

NYT 16 Oct2004 U.N. Says Sudan Death Toll Reaches 70,000 By WARREN HOGE UNITED NATIONS, Oct. 15 - The United Nations health agency said Friday that the death toll in refugee camps in the Darfur region of Sudan had reached 70,000, and that people would continue dying at the rate of 10,000 a month as long as the international community did not provide more money. David Nabarro, director of the crisis action group of the Geneva-based World Health Organization, said despite the international attention Darfur had attracted, the United Nations was not receiving the money it needed to curb deaths caused by malnutrition and disease. "Every day in newspapers in the U.S., Europe and Japan, there is coverage of the suffering in Darfur, yet we don't have a significant enough popular perception around the world of the enormity of that suffering, and the United Nations cannot get the funding for this priority program," Mr. Nabarro said in a telephone interview. The United Nations has received only half of the $300 million it needs, he said, while with full financing it could reduce the current mortality rate by half. At United Nations headquarters, the United States was discussing moving Security Council meetings on Sudan to Nairobi next month, when it will hold the rotating presidency of the Council. American diplomats said the purpose would be to speed the conclusion of talks in Kenya aimed at ending a decades-long civil war in the south of Sudan. The American ambassador, John C. Danforth, was President Bush's special envoy to those talks, and the United Nations believes that getting a peace agreement put into effect in the south would help resolve the conflict in Darfur, in western Sudan. Several Security Council ambassadors said Mr. Danforth had discussed the suggestion with them and was receiving support for it. Asked about the proposal, Richard A. Grenell, Mr. Danforth's spokesman, would say only that "during the month of November, while we hold the presidency, we are exploring ways to highlight the Sudan issue." The conflict in Darfur has forced 1.4 million villagers from their homes into displacement camps, and 200,000 of them have fled across the border to Chad. The United States has said that the government-supported killings and mass evictions constitute genocide, and Secretary General Kofi Annan has created an international commission to compile a report in three months on whether genocide has occurred. Mr. Nabarro said that because of a lack of money, relief workers in Darfur were unable to distribute aid in helicopters and had to rely on trucks, which broke down. He said the agency needed 10 charter aircraft but could only afford four. The agency has been borrowing money to meet its needs of $1.5 million a month, he said, but could not continue doing so past mid-December. "We are running on a threadbare, hand-to-mouth existence, and if the plight of these people in Darfur is as important to the international community as it seems to be, then we would have expected more long-term support," he said.

NYT 16 Oct 2004 OP-ED COLUMNIST The Dead Walk By NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF ALONG THE CHAD-SUDAN BORDER — In June I wrote several columns about Magboula Muhammad Khattar, a young Sudanese woman whose parents and husband had been murdered in Darfur and who had escaped by night to the Chad border. She was living under a tree there. One of her sons was then so sick, probably from contaminated water - 20,000 people were living out in the open without a single toilet - that he seemed likely to die. On returning this month, I searched again for Ms. Khattar. Now, each time I write about the genocide in Darfur, I hear from readers who say something like: "It's terrible to hear the stories, but face reality - Africans are always slaughtering each other." Or: "It's none of our business, and anyway we don't have extra troops to send." Or: "There's nothing we can do." If that were true, then Ms. Khattar would now be dead. So would the woman I'd met huddled under the very next tree, Zahra Abdel Karim, whose husband and two young sons had been slaughtered by the Janjaweed militia. She had been gang-raped along with her two sisters, who were then killed. Ms. Zahra was slashed with a sword and left to hobble away, naked and bleeding - but determined to survive so she could stagger across the desert to Chad and save her remaining child. Yet I just had a wonderful reunion here with Ms. Khattar and Ms. Zahra, who are now fast friends. They and the other 200,000 Darfur refugees in Chad are living in camps, with tents for shelter, purified water, medical care and food distributions. Even within Darfur itself, the United Nations World Food Program managed to get food to 1.3 million people last month out of the 2 million who need it. "It's much better here now," Ms. Khattar told me, flashing a beautiful smile as her son - now recovered - played with other children a few feet away. I also tracked down two lovely orphans, Nijah and Nibraz Ahmed, 1 and 4 years old, whom I had met in June after their parents were both killed by the Janjaweed. Their grandmother sneaked back into Darfur two weeks ago to try to find their older brother, so their widowed aunt is caring for them. Her situation has improved enough that she fed me a home-cooked breakfast on the ground outside her tent. The improvement for the refugees in Chad underscores how easy it is to save lives in a situation like this. Just a dollop of international attention led Sudan to rein in the Janjaweed to some degree, and to provide more humanitarian access. An international aid effort, overseen by the U.N., is saving countless lives by spending as much in a year as we spend in Iraq in a few days. I wish President Bush had done more to help Darfur. But he has done more than just about any other leader, and his legacy will be hundreds of thousands of lives saved in Darfur - but also tens of thousands of deaths that could have been averted if he had acted earlier. Dr. David Nabarro of the World Health Organization estimates that within Darfur itself, 70,000 people have perished since March 1 of hunger and illness. Add the deaths from violence, the deaths of refugees in Chad and the deaths before March 1, and my guess is that the Darfur genocide has claimed more than 100,000 lives so far - and the total is still rising by 5,000 to 10,000 deaths per month. If a halfhearted effort can save hundreds of thousands of lives - without dispatching troops, without a visit to the region by Mr. Bush, without providing all the money that is needed - then imagine what we could accomplish if we took serious action. Sudan's leaders are not Taliban-style fanatics. They are pragmatists who engaged in genocide because they thought it was the simplest way to end unrest among tribal peoples in Darfur. If we raise the costs of ethnic cleansing with a no-fly zone, an arms embargo, travel restrictions on senior officials and other targeted sanctions, then I think they can be persuaded to negotiate seriously toward peace. The history of genocide in the last century is one in which well-meaning Americans were distressed as Turks slaughtered Armenians, Nazis rounded up Jews and Gypsies, and Serbs wiped out Bosnians - but because there were no good or easy options, they did nothing. Note to Mr. Bush: This time, we can still redeem ourselves - but time is running out, at the rate of 200 lives a day.

NYT Magazine 17 Oct 2004 How Did Darfur Happen? By SCOTT ANDERSON He sat warily on the very edge of his chair, his mouth set in a steady, nervous grin. He would not use his real name -- Bashom, he called himself -- out of fear that he would be arrested for crimes he had committed as a janjaweed in his native state of West Darfur. Not that he used the word janjaweed, either. ''Ever since I was a young boy,'' he said, ''I wanted to be a knight. We all did, my friends and I. So when I came of age -- about 14 or 15 -- I became a knight.'' In Bashom's telling, this initially consisted of guarding his tribal village against intruders: thieves, cattle rustlers, the ''knights'' of rival tribes. It was only when he was a bit older that he went out on raids himself. ''We would travel at night on our horses, so as to be outside the villages of our enemies very early in the morning,'' he said. ''Normally, we would spread out along one edge of the village -- because we didn't want a battle; we wanted them to run -- and then our leader would give the signal and we would attack.'' Now 30 and living in semi-hiding in a slum outside Khartoum, the Sudanese capital, Bashom claimed to have parted company with his band of knights several years ago, well before the marauding and massacres that have devastated Darfur and drawn international condemnation. Nonetheless, he was worried his past could come back to haunt him. ''Because we did many bad things on these raids, you know?'' he said. ''And if the government is serious now about moving against the knights, well, maybe they will come for me.'' When I asked what these ''bad things'' were, Bashom wouldn't elaborate. Instead, he fixed me with his unsettling grin, and his voice, already a whisper, became even softer: ''Everything you can think of. Maybe some other things too.'' As is often the case with calamities in Africa, that which has befallen Darfur seemed to burst into the global consciousness without warning. Until this spring, probably few Westerners had ever heard of the remote region in western Sudan. Then, virtually overnight, it became a topic of urgent discussion in Congress and the United Nations, a staple of the evening news, even a debating point in the American presidential race. In fact, the alarm had been sounded long before. By the summer of 2003, Darfur refugees slipping across the border into neighboring Chad were telling of a scorched-earth Sudanese Army counterinsurgency campaign. In its hunt for members of a nascent rebel group, the refugees claimed, the army had teamed up with Arab tribesmen, and instead of looking for rebels, these camp followers simply laid waste: shooting down whoever crossed their path, torching homes, looting. In giving these raiders a name, the refugees turned to an old Darfur epithet for bandits -- janjaweed, or ''devils on horseback.'' Despite mounting criticism from abroad, the Sudanese government in Khartoum not only denied any connection with the janjaweed, but continued to suggest there was no crisis at all. As the number of refugees and burned villages soared, Khartoum effectively sealed Darfur off from the outside world. By this spring, vast tracts of the region had been depopulated, the refugee population in Chad had mushroomed to 120,000 and as many as 1,200,000 people were homeless -- or, in the dry parlance of the humanitarian aid community, ''internally displaced'' -- inside Darfur. There, they were subject to continuing attacks by the janjaweed and rapidly running out of food. At this 11th hour, the international community finally went into action. Under pressure spearheaded by the United States, the United Nations compelled Sudan to lift many of the strictures placed on foreign relief agencies, leading to a rapid upsurge in supplies and personnel reaching the field. Responding to demands that it protect the refugee camps from further janjaweed attacks, Khartoum shuttled thousands of additional policemen to Darfur and allowed in a handful of African Union observers to monitor the situation. By the closest of margins, wholesale catastrophe appears to have been averted, at least for the time being; while janjaweed attacks persist in some areas, relief agencies are now cautiously optimistic that enough food and medicine are reaching the field to forestall mass starvation or a disease epidemic. But what will happen next? In its need to hold someone responsible both for causing the crisis and for ending it, the outside world has imbued Darfur with a clarity and a coherence that are not at all apparent on the ground. Instead, what emerges is a far more complicated and, ultimately, more disheartening tale: disaster brought about through a blend of incompetence, cynicism and cowardice. At its most grim, it is the story of how a remarkably small group of combatants -- probably just a few thousand soldiers, rebels and so-called janjaweed combined, mostly armed with little more than what might be found in a National Guard armory -- was able to precipitate a tragedy that has pushed more than a million people to the edge of extinction. The paradox is that the very ease with which they were able to do so also means there is no quick or simple solution. When, after a June visit to Darfur, Secretary of State Colin Powell was asked what the Sudanese government could do to solve the janjaweed problem, he rather blithely replied, ''Since they turned it on, they can turn it off.'' If that were ever true, it almost certainly is not now. Rather, with the poison in Darfur allowed to reach full strength, the shattered region has become the latest ward of the international community and will undoubtedly remain so for a long time to come. "When the problems with the rebels started in Darfur,'' Gen. Ibrahim Suleiman explained, ''we in the government of Sudan had a number of options. We chose the wrong one. We chose the very worst one.'' If this seems a surprisingly candid assessment for a man who had once been among the most powerful figures in the Sudanese military -- the retired four-star general had served as minister of defense and (twice) as the armed forces' chief of staff -- Suleiman evidently felt he had little left to lose. As governor general of North Darfur, he had played a pivotal role in events leading up to the calamity in the region and had seen his career destroyed by it. ''And it would have been so easy to avoid,'' he said in a sitting room of his Khartoum home. ''None of this had to happen.'' Even by the standards of Sudan -- Africa's largest and ethnically most diverse nation -- Darfur is a place of superlatives. A vast landlocked region in the heart of the Sahel desert, it would appear to be among the most isolated regions on earth. In fact, astride one of Africa's great migration and camel caravan routes, Darfur has always been one of the continent's richest melting pots; along with the Fur, from whom the region gets it name, fully 90 of the tribes and clans of Sudan are represented there, while others have settled from as far away as Africa's Atlantic coast, thousands of miles away. Among the few things that the various antagonists in the Darfur crisis agree on is the conflict's root cause: cataclysmic droughts that have afflicted a vast stretch of northern and eastern Africa since the 1980's. Drought has strained the relationships that existed among the various tribes in the region and, most acutely, the relationships between its farming and nomadic communities. Historically, the nomads, concentrated in the drier northern reaches of Darfur, had brought their animals down into the more temperate southern farmlands during dry season and then migrated back north with the onset of the rains. With water holes and seasonal rivers vanishing in the drought, though, the nomads were forced to venture farther south to find pasturage and to stay far longer. Eventually, conditions grew so dire that many settled into a semi-pastoral existence, establishing permanent villages amid the farming communities from which they would graze their animals in a 40- or 50-mile radius. With everyone in increasing competition for the same shrinking pool of natural resources -- water, grassland, arable soil -- conflicts increased. Initially, the Darfur tribes tried to cope with these tensions as they always had, through intercommunal negotiation. If a nomad's camels trampled a farmer's field or, conversely, some of his herd was stolen, the elders of both tribes would convene and hash out a settlement: typically, a payment of cash or animals to the victim. By the mid-1980's, however, this age-old system was being dismantled by the national government in Khartoum, which sought to exert greater control over Sudan's near-autonomous tribes. Instead of tribal mediation, almost any dispute now meant going before an official and maneuvering through the state bureaucracy. Fair enough, except that the established farmers of Darfur were mainly from African tribes, while the encroaching nomads were primarily Arabs. And given that Arabs were steadily coming to dominate all branches of the Sudanese government, there was little doubt how any Arab-African squabble would ultimately be decided. A result was surely the opposite of what Khartoum intended: the tribes of Darfur, Arab and African alike, increasingly took matters into their own hands, availing themselves of knights like Bashom to defend their own communities and to conduct reprisal raids on their foes. What's more, with civil unrest becoming common across the Sahel, the entire region was now awash in modern weaponry, allowing the knights to trade up from their old bolt-action rifles and spears to Kalashnikovs. The consequences were predictable; in one clash between Arab tribes and the Fur in the late 1980's, at least 3,000 were killed. Not that anyone in Khartoum paid much attention. By then, the Sudanese government had a much bigger problem on its hands. The ''Arabization'' of Sudanese society, together with the imposition of sharia, or Islamic law, had led to an explosive resurgence of a long-simmering civil war being waged in southern Sudan by the Sudan People's Liberation Army (S.P.L.A.), composed primarily of Christian blacks. In combating the S.P.L.A., the Khartoum government had turned for help to Arab tribal militias, and the fighting in the south had quickly taken on the tinge of both jihad and genocide, making Sudan a pariah state in the eyes of the West. That did not improve with the 1989 coup that brought to power the current head of state, Gen. Omar Hassan al-Bashir; instead, it almost seemed Bashir was intent on building his nation's outlaw status. He expanded the use of Arab tribal militias in the south, and the death toll there ultimately exceeded two million. In a vicious game of round robin, Sudan supported a range of guerrilla groups against its neighbors, as those same neighbors supported guerrilla groups or fomented rebellion against Sudan. By the late 1990's, Khartoum had gained such notoriety as a haven for Islamic fundamentalist radicals -- Osama bin Laden was its most famous temporary resident -- that it was slapped with American economic sanctions and then hit with a retaliatory air strike after the bombings of the United States embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. All the while, tensions in western Sudan, in Darfur, continued at a low boil. If the African tribes there were not particularly bothered by the imposition of Islamic law -- unlike the African tribes in the south, those in Darfur were Muslim -- the continuing Arabization policy was causing them to feel ever more marginalized, the Arab tribes ever more powerful. Once again, the tit-for-tat raids in the region escalated toward full-bore intertribal war, with the difference now that the Bashir government had any number of internal and regional enemies that might play the deteriorating situation to their advantage. In April 2001, General Suleiman stepped into this powder keg upon assuming the title of governor general, or wali, of North Darfur State. ''I saw that the situation was becoming very grave,'' he recalled. ''The violence was increasing; all the different tribes were gathering up weapons.'' Most ominously, Khartoum's failure to impose order was being interpreted by the African tribes as deliberate, provocative policy. ''They believed the raids against them were being agreed to by the government,'' Suleiman told me. ''Otherwise, why didn't the government stop them?'' One reason for Khartoum's neglect of the region may have been that in the wake of Sept. 11, the Bashir regime was energetically trying to clean up its international image -- and the sheer amount of cleaning up necessary left little time for new distractions. With an oil industry just getting under way in eastern Sudan, Khartoum was eager to end American economic sanctions, which kept foreign investors away and blocked access to international markets. Having already ended its romance with the most notorious Islamic radicals, Khartoum set about mending relations with many of its neighbors, quietly cutting off its support to a variety of guerrilla and dissident groups throughout the region. Certainly its most significant overture was agreeing to a strong American role in mediating negotiations to end the southern civil war, a move that would have been unthinkable just a short time earlier. What with everything else going on, it was pretty much left to Suleiman to keep a lid on the growing tensions in Darfur. To do so, he summoned a steady stream of both African and Arab tribal leaders to his office in El Fasher, the state capital, and urged them to stand down their militias. Of course, this would only happen if everyone stood down simultaneously, and in pursuing this goal Suleiman discovered he had an implacable foe in a charismatic Arab sheik named Musa Hilal. As the leader of the Um Jalloul tribe, the 43-year-old Hilal's reputation for banditry and violence against his rivals was already legend -- in 1997, he had been briefly jailed for reportedly ordering the murder of 17 African tribesmen -- and a disproportionate number of the reports of bloodshed that crossed Suleiman's desk pointed to Hilal's followers as the perpetrators. Since appealing to the sheik's sense of decency seemed a nonstarter -- in Suleiman's estimation, Hilal was a born criminal -- the general opted for the direct, man-to-man approach. ''I told him, 'If I decide to kill you, I will kill you, and nothing will happen to me,''' Suleiman recalled in his Khartoum sitting room. ''And do you know? He just smiled. I think even then Hilal knew he couldn't be touched.'' Since talking wasn't doing the trick, the general took a page out of the old playbook of the British colonialists: in 2002, he arrested the three most troublesome tribal leaders, including Hilal, and sent them and 21 of their lieutenants into internal exile in a prison on the far side of Sudan. ''My idea was to get them out of Darfur, to let things quiet down,'' he said. The former general shrugged with a grin. ''And who knows, maybe getting to know each other in prison, they would sort things out.'' But by early 2003, Suleiman had another headache to deal with: a new guerrilla group calling itself the Sudan Liberation Army (S.L.A.) had popped up in the western reaches of Darfur and had begun carrying out attacks on police outposts. Just who was behind the S.L.A. and what they ultimately wanted were a bit of a mystery -- and, in fact, are only slightly less so today. With its leadership largely composed of members of the African Zaghawa tribe, and reportedly supported by dissident Zaghawa military officers from across the border in Chad, the group presented a hazy list of grievances against Khartoum, most centering on the political and economic neglect of Darfur in general and of the African tribes in particular. Somewhat impertinently, the S.L.A. also demanded to be included in the north-south peace talks being brokered by the Americans and just then reaching fruition. Not surprisingly, given its track record of ignoring Darfur, the Khartoum regime paid these latest malcontents little attention. That all changed early on the morning of April 25, 2003, when the S.L.A. launched a surprise attack on the airport in El Fasher. After shooting up five military airplanes and two helicopter gunships, the rebels soon withdrew. But they had succeeded in killing some 100 soldiers and catapulting their cause into the national consciousness. In battle-scarred El Fasher, Suleiman frantically worked the phones to Khartoum. ''I told them, 'Send me two brigades of good soldiers,''' he said. (A brigade has at least 3,000 soldiers.) '''Just two brigades, brought up from the south, and we will end this whole thing.''' In his Khartoum home, the general grew more animated as he recalled the events following the S.L.A. attack. ''I had seen the S.L.A. in El Fasher, so I knew they were nothing; the army, just with their light weapons, and the S.L.A. had run like girls!'' Suleiman slumped back with a disgusted sigh. ''But no.'' Shortly after the attack on El Fasher, Suleiman was dismissed from his post, and Khartoum began lining up the support of Arab tribes in Darfur for the coming offensive against the S.L.A. Among the first leaders approached was Suleiman's old nemesis, Sheik Musa Hilal, recently freed from jail. In Kas, as in many other towns in Darfur, what passes for the central square is a great stretch of bare ground, perhaps 10 acres in size, with no trees or amenities or, most of the time, people. On some evenings, a portion is cordoned off for soccer games that can draw hundreds of avid male onlookers, but this cluster of activity seems only to underscore the surrounding emptiness. It was not always so. Until last year, Kas was the agricultural hub of this corner of South Darfur State, and on market days -- Mondays and Thursdays -- the square was a cacophonous scene of farmers from the outlying villages selling their produce and animals and buying up manufactured wares for the homeward journey. Now those villages are empty, many burned to the ground by marauding janjaweed, and the survivors -- some 40,000 by best estimate -- live in squalid tent cities within Kas itself. At the south end of the square is one such camp, occupying the site of what was a school. Across its grounds, perhaps 2,000 or 3,000 people are packed into tiny huts made of thatch and bent sticks, the luckier ones with roofs of plastic sheeting to keep out the rain. By communal agreement, the brick shells of the former classrooms are reserved for storage and to house the very sick. Among the residents of the camp, Hamid Maraja Hassan is something of an operator. The resourceful 42-year-old former farmer has not only managed to secure plastic sheeting for both huts housing his two wives and seven surviving children; his daily treks in search of work have also yielded enough day jobs -- digging latrine pits, helping out at a metalworking shop -- to supplement the meager food-aid rations. The endless hustling also helps him to avoid the ennui that grips many in the camp and to keep from dwelling on what might come next. ''My wives ask me, 'What is to become of us?''' Hassan said one afternoon as his two infant sons crawled over his lap. ''And I have to tell them, 'I don't know.' It is not in our power to know.'' ending credence to the charges of genocide leveled against the Sudanese government and its janjaweed allies is the systematic pattern the devastation in Darfur has taken. After scorched-earth campaigns in those northern and western areas where the S.L.A. rebels were actually known to be operating, the pogroms gradually extended south and east, finally reaching the Kas area only in January and February of this year. For Hassan in his home village of Torobeda, a Fur farming community of some 400 families about 25 miles west of Kas, the first hint of trouble came when the neighboring village of Shataya was attacked and burned in early February. ''Of course, we had heard about the killing in other parts of Darfur,'' Hassan recounted, ''but there was no trouble in our area -- there had never been any rebels there -- so the attack on Shataya came as a big shock to us.'' Three days later, it was Torobeda's turn; in Hassan's recollection, it began with a cracking sound -- ''like wood being split'' -- coming from the far end of the village. Soon, neighbors were running past his home in the direction of the river and the larger town of Kallek, shouting that the janjaweed had arrived. Sending his wives and eight children down the lane, Hassan stayed behind to round up his herd of goats, which, together with 14 cows in an adjacent field, represented all his wealth in the world. By the time he began his own flight, the attackers were in the middle of Torobeda. ''They were everywhere, janjaweed and police together,'' he said. ''Some were on foot; others were in Land Cruisers; and they were setting fire to the homes, shooting the people as they came out.'' With his goats, Hassan finally caught up to his family on the road to Kallek, only to discover that his eldest son, 23-year-old Ibrahim, was not among them; defying his father's instructions, Ibrahim had turned back to retrieve the family's cattle. ''He was a very good son, you see?'' Hassan said with a tender smile. ''He was concerned for our wealth, of how we would survive without our cows.'' Abandoning his goat herd, Hassan went back to find Ibrahim. He found him lying in a field, still conscious but slipping away from a gunshot wound in his back. ''There was no hope, so I stayed there with him while he died,'' Hassan said. ''But I didn't have time to bury him. That is still hard for me to think about, but the janjaweed were coming and I had other children who needed me, so I had to leave him there.'' Rejoining the rest of his family, Hassan led them across the river and into what he imagined was the safety of Kallek. Instead, their problems got a whole lot worse. In one of the more notorious incidents of the entire Darfur conflict, thousands in the Kallek area who were burned out during that second week of February spent the next month trapped in the town by murderous janjaweed and Sudanese security forces. Women and children were herded into cantonments at one end of Kallek, where many of the women were raped. The captors divided the men into groups small enough that they could be tortured or killed at whim. By his own estimate, Hassan saw 15 or 16 men murdered, supposedly for being S.L.A. rebels or sympathizers. The horror endured by Hassan and his family in Kallek finally ended in mid-March 2004, when they managed to flee to Kas. By then, the dead included Hassan's father and brother. ''So this is why I say we will never go back,'' he said. ''How can we? Those of us who were there, who lived, we know that it was the Arabs and the government together who did this. Even if we could go back, what is left there now? Only the Arabs.'' If you ask me, most of our troubles can be blamed on the fact that we're a dry country,'' opined Ahmed Angabo Ahmed, the commissioner for Kas. ''Beer. If at the end of his working day, the Sudanese man could come home and relax, drink a cold beer, I think everyone around here would calm down a lot.'' It was an unexpected theory for a Sudanese government official to posit -- under Islamic law, alcohol has been banned in the nation for decades -- but Ahmed is unusually cosmopolitan. A former air force brigadier general, he received his flight training in the United States, and his experiences there left a profound impression. ''Williams Air Force Base, Phoenix, Ariz.,'' he explained. ''We'd have classroom instruction in the morning, fly in the afternoon and then we'd hit happy hour. They made me an honorary citizen. America, it's a great country.'' There is a pleasant, languorous feel to the small government compound in Kas. A collection of low brick buildings set beneath enormous shade trees, it is a place where it is very easy to forget you are in the heart of both a humanitarian disaster zone and, to some degree, a war zone; on most of my visits, the half-dozen policemen detailed to guard the compound were relaxed enough to take long naps in the seats of a rusted-out Land Rover sitting up on blocks. If Ahmed felt any greater sense of urgency, he disguised it well. Over tea and cigarettes in the cool shadows of his office, the 55-year-old commissioner steered the conversation toward reminiscences of his old flying days and away from the topic -- the Darfur crisis -- that had brought a steady stream of foreign visitors to his office in recent weeks. Pulling a stack of business cards from the pocket of his white robe, he read off a dizzying list of initials -- W.H.O., W.F.P., I.R.C. -- before boring of the task and setting them aside. ''All of a sudden, Kas is famous,'' he sighed. ''Everyone wants to come to Kas.'' As part of the kinder, gentler face the Sudanese government is now showing to the world, it had recently acknowledged that, yes, indeed, there is a humanitarian crisis in Darfur and that some of the refugees have legitimate fears about returning to their homes -- the government's top priority. Either word of all this hadn't reached Kas yet or Commissioner Ahmed refused to play along. ''There is no fear,'' he said of the refugees. ''It is a plan, my friend. They are following the orders of the S.L.A. The S.L.A. wants to show the bad face of the government, that we cannot maintain these people, that we cannot feed them. The S.L.A. told the poor people here: 'Hey, don't give up. The U.S. and England will come here and occupy this country and they will give you everything and take off the Arabs from Sudan.''' As for the true reason for the sudden international attention on Darfur, the commissioner had a ready answer. ''It's American politics. It's election time, and Bush needs something to turn attention away from the mess he's made in Iraq. So he says: 'Look at all these terrible things Sudan is doing in Darfur. We have to stop it.' And then Kerry has to jump in: 'No, it's even worse than that, and Bush isn't doing enough.' And do you know who's behind it all, the ones pulling the strings? The Jews. The Jewish lobby in America and Israel. Whenever you see an Islamic country making progress, they are there to sabotage it.'' With the exception of Ahmed, with his penchant for ad libs, most Sudanese officials follow a script when discussing Darfur, one so honed they tend to recite it in nearly identical form. The only tricky part is that the script is constantly revised as circumstances demand. Thus, after months of effectively denying there was a crisis in Darfur and severely restricting access to the region by relief agencies and the foreign media, the threat of United Nations sanctions led to an abrupt about-face. Before coming to Kas, I joined some 40 other journalists, mostly Sudanese, on a whirlwind, two-day fact-finding mission to all three Darfur state capitals, organized by the Sudanese Ministry of Information. If thin on facts, the junket was at least revealing of what the Sudanese government wished us to see and hear. In El Fasher, the capital of North Darfur, we were shepherded to trucks laden with refugees and their possessions, ostensibly returning to their villages now that security had been restored. At every available opportunity, the trip organizers trotted out some local African chieftain who announced that the problems had never been as bad as reported and, in any event, were now rapidly slipping into memory thanks to the robust efforts of the Sudanese government. The message was clear: Darfur was gradually returning to normal; the rule of law was being re-established. The junket was also an opportunity for the Sudanese government to put the crisis into its ''proper'' context. As officials repeatedly pointed out, it wasn't as if all African tribal groups had been burned out by the janjaweed, or only Africans who had been victimized; in a number of places, Arab villages had suffered retaliatory strikes by African militias or the S.L.A. They also stressed the elasticity of the janjaweed label, an epithet long used in the region to describe any bandit or highwayman regardless of race. But perhaps their most novel argument was to discount a racial component in the conflict altogether, a line I had first heard back in Khartoum while meeting with Gen. Abdel Rahim Mohamed Hussein, the Sudanese minister of the interior with a special portfolio on the Darfur crisis. ''Because of intermarriage over the years,'' Hussein said, ''there is no such thing as a true Arab or African in Sudan anymore.'' In his office, he abruptly pointed to one of his aides, a dark-skinned military officer. ''Look at him. He is an Arab. I am not an Arab. But these men here are all Arabs even though their skin is darker than mine.'' The minister chuckled pleasantly. ''You see? All this talk of race really misses the point.'' Instead, the minister contended, the Darfur conflict must be viewed as a complex regional struggle between different tribes and political constituencies. As for who is truly behind the S.L.A. and its latecomer sister guerrilla group, the Justice and Equality Movement, the Sudanese government points to a broad and eclectic rogues' gallery: dissident Zaghawa officers in the Chadian military; Islamic mujahedeen under the leadership of Hassan al-Turabi, formerly the spiritual mentor to both bin Laden and Bashir, who now sits in a Khartoum prison; John Garang's S.P.L.A. rebels in the south -- even Eritrea, Sudan's neighbor on its far eastern border and the perennial bad boy of the region. While it is not hard to see Khartoum's interest in building this line of defense -- after all, if a racial or ethnic component to the conflict can be discounted, it fairly negates the accusations of genocide -- there are enough grains of truth to almost all the government's defenses to muddy the charges made against it. Certainly, many of the foreign aid workers and journalists pouring into Darfur by midsummer were finding a much different place than they had imagined: less bleak, far more complex. One of the oddest aspects was how happy the refugees seemed. ''They're the happiest I.D.P.'s'' -- internally displaced persons -- ''I've ever seen,'' commented one American relief worker who had arrived recently. ''I've been at this work a long time, and I've never seen anything like it.'' But what looked like happiness may have been relief. The mere presence of outsiders was seen by the refugees as insurance against further attacks by the janjaweed and, by extension, the Sudanese government. One Unicef worker was also reappraising her preconceptions about Darfur, including the commonly accepted accusation that the Sudanese government had chosen to obstruct the relief effort as a matter of policy. Having experienced for herself the grotesque inefficiency of the Sudanese bureaucracy, the Unicef worker found herself increasingly questioning how deliberate it was. ''How much of this just comes down to incompetence and feeling besieged?'' she asked. ''No government wants to admit that they've lost control of a situation, especially one that feels the outside world is lining up against it. If you look at what's happened here in that light, a lot of what Sudan has done takes on a certain messed-up logic.'' I was reminded of this one morning in Kas, when Commissioner Ahmed drove up in his Land Cruiser to show me the new refugee camp he was trying to establish on the edge of town. While the foremost goal of the Sudanese government has been to repatriate the displaced to their home villages as soon as possible, that initiative has been largely stymied by the contention of both the refugees and the international relief agencies that as long as the janjaweed control the countryside, return is tantamount to a death sentence. As an interim step, Ahmed has been trying to establish a new camp on a broad, flat plain at the edge of Kas, one that would appear to promise much better living conditions than those in the inner-town camps. In making this argument to various delegations of refugees, however, Ahmed had found no takers. ''It is a trick of the government,'' Hamid Maraja Hassan, the refugee from Torobeda, had told me, ''because in that place, we will have no protection. The janjaweed can do anything they want to us.'' Whatever temptation I had to ascribe Hassan's comments to undue paranoia was undercut by something Ahmed said once we had reached the proposed campsite. Standing at the edge of the vast plain -- empty except for a single field tent in which a half-dozen policemen sat -- Ahmed began by telling how he had recently cleaned up the crime problem around Kas. ''We had about 120 bandits in the area,'' he said, ''highwaymen, cattle thieves, all kinds of criminals. But what to do with them? And then I decided, I'll make them soldiers and policemen! Because as you know from your own experience in America, bandits and police, they're very similar, and if they're good at the one profession, they'll probably be good at the other.'' Ahmed abruptly drew up, as if sensing that he might be veering off message again; in recent months, both refugees and human rights monitors had repeatedly charged that Sudanese authorities were hiding the janjaweed by putting them in police uniforms. As we drove back into town and through yet another refugee camp, the commissioner pointed out a number of tents that appeared to be empty or abandoned. According to him, it was because their owners had returned to their home villages but were also maintaining a ''residence'' in the camp so they could continue to collect food rations from the relief agencies. Rather than being angered, however, he found this thought quite amusing. ''Well, they really are scoundrels,'' he chuckled. ''But who can blame them? If we were in their situation, let's hope we would be so clever.'' At the edge of the refugee camp, the Land Cruiser was suddenly engulfed by waving, smiling children. The commissioner rolled down his tinted window to shout a greeting to them and exuberantly waved back. ith a dainty hand, Sheik Musa Hilal gently tugged on his eyelashes until one came free in his fingers. After closely examining the lash for a moment, he gave it two soft kisses, then cast it free and watched it flutter to the ground. If an odd gesture for most anyone, it had a special creepiness coming from a man who stands charged with genocide. After topping a list of seven supposed janjaweed commanders accused of war crimes that was issued by the State Department in June, Hilal took an unusual tack. Rather than go into hiding, he assumed a very public presence in Khartoum and made himself available to Western journalists, even inviting them along on trips to his tribal homeland in North Darfur. In what must be something of an embarrassment to the Sudanese government, which habitually denies any ties to Hilal, the sheik's trips home usually involved transport aboard Sudanese government aircraft. It would appear the handsome sheik had things pretty well figured out. On the one hand, it seems highly unlikely that the Khartoum government would move against him -- the mere mention of his name sets off paroxysms of nervousness among Sudanese officials -- because he knows too much of what has really happened in Darfur. He obliquely hinted at this during a long evening's discussion at a follower's home in Khartoum. ''What I can say about Darfur,'' he said, a sly smile working at the edge of his mouth, ''is that the government came to me and to many of the other sheiks and asked for our help in fighting the S.L.A. Of course, we did so gladly, because we were suffering from these rebels, too. And so we gave them our young men to help in this fight, but what happened after that, if mistakes or crimes took place -- well, that is the government's responsibility, not ours.'' On the other hand, it would appear Hilal doesn't have much to fear from those in the international community who profess to want him arrested; after all, his star billing on the U.S. State Department's war-criminals list in June didn't prevent the State Department from meeting with him in July. To many, that meeting epitomized the strange transformation that has occurred in American policy toward Darfur in recent months. From having led the charge for international involvement in the region and first raising the specter of genocide, the Bush administration has been noticeably reluctant to lend importance to the declaration of genocide unanimously passed by Congress. While conspiracy theories abound over this sudden soft-pedaling, the simplest explanation is that the Bush administration is caught in something of a vise between salvaging the progress it has made with Sudan in recent years -- most notably the north-south peace settlement that American diplomats were instrumental in forging -- and the risk of losing it all by pushing too hard on Darfur. ''It's a pretty tough position to be in,'' one State Department official conceded. ''The Sudanese will bend to a certain point, but beyond that they just won't. The real danger here is that if you go too far, it derails the north-south deal, and you're back to another 22 years of war.'' In a revealing illustration of just how complicated the situation has become, American diplomats now harbor almost as much rancor for the rebels in Darfur as they do for the government in Khartoum. In recent months, the S.L.A. has repeatedly stalled peace talks being brokered by the African Union by setting unrealistic preconditions or quibbling over such details as where the talks should be held; for its part, the Justice and Equality Movement faction had, until recently, boycotted the talks altogether. ''The first notion anyone's got to disabuse themselves of,'' the same State Department official said, ''is that there are any good guys in this. There aren't. The S.L.A. started this war, and now they and the Justice and Equality Movement are doing everything possible to keep it going. The S.L.A. has never stood up to the army the way the S.P.L.A. did in the south. Instead, they've been very content to sit back, let the village burnings go on, let the killing go on, because the more international pressure that's brought to bear on Khartoum, the stronger their position grows.'' For its part, the Khartoum government has proved adept at playing one part of the international community off the other. At the same time that they have assumed a conciliatory stance toward the United Nations demands, they have played to their Arab neighbors and more militant domestic constituency by darkly warning of an Anglo-American invasion (something neither the British nor the Americans have ever threatened) and promising ''another Iraq'' should that come to pass. The two-pronged strategy has produced some odd moments; on Aug. 4, even as the Bashir government was professing full cooperation with the United Nations, an estimated 100,000 of its supporters were in the streets of Khartoum denouncing foreign meddling in Sudanese affairs. The United Nations secretary general, Kofi Annan, recently established a commission to investigate whether acts of genocide have occurred in Darfur and who might be responsible for them. The commission is headed by an Italian jurist who has done similar work on crimes committed in the former Yugoslavia. The commission presents the possibility, perhaps, of some justice being meted out to those responsible for the Darfur disaster. Some in the Bush administration now quietly suggest that all the discussion of whether what is transpiring in Darfur meets the definition of genocide may be an unhelpful diversion. At the same time, accusations of genocide could serve to give Khartoum a perverse rallying cry in other Arab and Muslim nations, and even in Western Europe, places where memory of the hyperbole and erroneous claims that accompanied the U.S. invasion of Iraq are still fresh. And it is not as if a finding of genocide is necessarily going to change anything anyway; when Colin Powell finally uttered the G-word in connection with Darfur in mid-September, it was with the quick assurance that this didn't mean the United States was prepared to take any further action, a statement that managed to enrage Khartoum and the international human rights community simultaneously. What a declaration of genocide certainly would not do is to lend greater clarity to what is happening on the ground. If this is a genocide, it doesn't look very much like those we've known before. No public proclamations about ''the enemy within,'' no extermination lists, not even Interhamwe mobs butchering Tutsis in the streets of Rwanda. Instead, it is shadowy, informal; the killing takes place offstage. It is the destruction of a people in a place where it is virtually impossible to distinguish incompetence from conspiracy. Is that by design, the sheer evil genius of it all, or just more evidence of a government's utter haplessness? A genocide may, it seems, occur almost inadvertently. Toward the end of my time in South Darfur, I spent a day at a camel market in the village of Burogna, some 20 miles west of Kas. I went there because I had been told it was a place where janjaweed frequently congregated, and sure enough, as I approached, I saw a number of gun-toting young men in Ray-Bans and patches of uniforms strolling amid the white-robed Arab camel traders. For the only time in my monthlong stay in Sudan, I felt overt hostility. Sitting with a few tribal elders beneath a tree, they told me how they felt maligned by all the ''lies'' that had been spread about the Arabs of Darfur, how all the world now seemed to be against them. Yes, they conceded, they had sent their young men to join the fight against the rebels when the government asked, but wasn't this what a patriot in any country would do? The only explanation they could find was that the outside world had been duped into believing the lies spread by those who wished to destroy them: the rebels, the southerners, the Americans, probably the Israelis, too. A short distance away, an Islamic preacher was conducting a revival-style meeting, with perhaps 200 men gathered in a circle around him. It was an impassioned sermon that floated between teachings from the Koran and ominous warnings of how the Arabs were a threatened people, of how they all had to prepare for a coming jihad against their enemies. In the Darfur countryside, almost every man carries a sheathed dagger tied to his left arm, and at the sermon's fever pitch, some of those gathered in the circle -- tribal elders in white robes, the young gunmen in their designer sunglasses -- reached for their daggers and lifted them into the air with a cry that seemed equal parts angry and exultant. While leaving the camel market, I was approached by a nervous young man named Yahya Ibrahim, who had sat at the periphery during my talk with the Arab elders. ''Don't believe anything that anyone says to you here,'' he whispered, ''because all these men, they are janjaweed.'' It turned out that Ibrahim was a Fur. By his account, his nearby village had been attacked by the janjaweed last October and most of his family killed, with the survivors now living in refugee camps in Kas; he had been allowed to stay on in Burogna because of various friendships he had among the Arabs. When I asked if he recognized any of his attackers, Ibrahim cast a meaningful gaze over the dour young men in sunglasses now crowding in around us. ''I knew some of them,'' he replied. I asked Ibrahim when he thought the rest of his family and village might be able to return home. ''But they can never come back here,'' he said with an incredulous shrug. ''They will all be killed. This is not our land anymore. We can never come back here.'' Scott Anderson has reported for the magazine from Chechnya, Israel and Libya.

ArabicNews.com 18 Oct 2004 Tripoli summit rejects intervention in Darfur Libya-Sudan, Politics, 10/18/2004 In conclusion of its works, the African summit held in Tripoli, Libya, stressed rejection to any foreign intervention concerning the issue of Darfur in being a mere African issue. It called also on the two rebel movements to sign the Abuja humanitarian protocol. In conclusion of its meeting on late Sunday evening, the summit stressed "commitment to Sudan's sovereignty and its territorial integrity." It stressed the importance of non-interference in Sudan's internal affairs in a way that obstructs the efforts made to achieve stability and security in all parts of Sudan." Nigeria's foreign minister Lolou Adinji announced that the two rebel movements in Darfur have to sign the humanitarian protocol which was concluded during the recent round of negotiations in Abuja in September. He said that the summit welcomed in its final statement the decision of the government of Sudan in increasing the number of the African federation forces in Darfur and urged all African countries to participate in these forces. A high ranking Egyptian official in the summit announced that Sudan approved to make all possible efforts in order to end the crisis in Darfur. However, the spokesman for the Egyptian presidency Majid Abdul Fattah said that Khartoum is in need to more financial support in order to end the crisis. A measure which will be more effective than the threats to impose sanctions. The meeting which was held under the patronage and presence of the Libyan leader Muammar al-Qathafi was attended by the Presidents Hosni Mubarak of Egypt; Chad's Idris Deibi; Sudan's Omar Hassan al-Bashir and the President of Nigeria whose country is assuming the current rotating presidency of the African Union. It is, however, decided that the talks which are held under the auspices of the African federation between the government and the rebels of Darfur will be resumed this month after the collapse of one round held earlier in September.

washingtonpost.com 18 Oct 2004 Livestock Looting Is Another Tragedy For Darfur Families By Emily Wax Washington Post Foreign Service Monday, October 18, 2004; Page A13 MOYASHWA MARKET, Sudan -- One month ago, the body of Sulliman Bashir Nassir, a prominent man from an African tribe, was found slumped in his barn not far from this foul-smelling, overflowing livestock market in the Darfur region of western Sudan. His killers were Janjaweed, his family said, members of a government-backed Arab militia that has terrorized and raided Darfur for months. The militiamen also took off with the family's hard-earned assets: 800 cows, 450 goats, 20 donkeys and 6 horses, they said. On a recent day, the local leader of Nassir's tribe, Abdel Sharrifa Gharida Abdel Rhani, drove a Land Rover through the soft sand to the market, searching for the family's animals. He looked for the brand -- a large circle with an X -- that Nassir used to mark his herds. For 40 minutes, he scanned a field packed with more than 5,000 camels and 7,000 head of cattle. "That's our mark!" he said suddenly, pointing at a cluster of cattle. "These could be them!" Rhani started snapping photographs and writing notes in a thick folder. But within minutes, an imposing man wielding an ivory-encrusted walking stick marched over to the vehicle. He reached inside and grabbed the wheel. "There is nothing here for you," he boomed at Rhani. "Go. Go." The human suffering in Darfur is well documented: the burning of villages that has driven 1.5 million Africans off their land and into squalid refugee camps; rapes that have locked the population in fear; and the unpunished killings of tens of thousands of people, most of them men. But another crime being committed in the region may prove just as difficult to reconcile: the widespread looting of livestock. Stolen animals worth millions of dollars have flooded markets like this one in Nyala, the capital of South Darfur province, according to international organizations and independent Sudanese investigators. Cows, camels, goats and donkeys are a measurement of wealth and prestige here. Each tribe has its own branding symbol, and families personalize those marks for further identification. A camel, the Cadillac of animals, runs $1,000. A cow, providing milk or meat, can cost $400. And a donkey, reliable but less impressive, can set a family back about $150. At refugee camps, where thousands of Africans have fled, threats of reprisals are openly discussed. Without a government willing to compensate them for their lost wealth, village elders said, revenge will become the only way to reclaim it. Some of the animals have been eaten at celebratory victory meals, international aid workers investigating the issue said. But most have wound up in large markets across Darfur, including a massive slaughterhouse in El Obeid, the capital of the neighboring state of North Kordofan, investigators said. Others have been sent to other countries -- to Chad, the Central African Republic and the Gulf states, where demand and prices for good beef are high. International aid organizations and a Sudanese group are investigating the thefts and trying to trace the profits to determine whether they have reached high levels of government. But many victims and traders said the money has largely stayed in the hands of the Janjaweed. "Janjaweed and Janjaweed leaders are getting rich off of this," said Adam Azzim Mohamed, a professor at the University of Khartoum, who is tracking the profits from the sales. "There is an expression in Darfur that says, 'A man is powerless without his herds.' What people outside Sudan may not realize yet is how important the reprisals regarding these animals may be. There will not peace until the government sorts out this. . . . Otherwise it can be very dangerous." The conflict began 20 months ago when two African groups rebelled against the Arab-dominated government, saying they had been politically marginalized. International organizations say the government armed the Janjaweed to put down the uprising. Facing international pressure, the government conceded that it had armed some of the militiamen, but says most are bandits outside its control. Government officials said police in Darfur were investigating reports of stolen herds and that victims would be compensated if their claims were proved. But human rights advocates and villagers said they saw no evidence of such an investigation. They countered that the Sudanese government has failed to hold anyone accountable for crimes, creating an atmosphere of impunity. "The international community has got to hold the government responsible for what has happened. They have trained, equipped and deployed the Janjaweed forces," said Peter Takirambudde, executive director of the Africa division of Human Rights Watch. "If you talk about people ever returning to their normal lives, clearly this would be a key consideration. How can they go back without any of their principal assets? Obviously, these guys don't have Swiss bank accounts. I think the international community must remain focused on pressuring the government to get this done." When Charles Snyder, the State Department's senior representative on Sudan, visited Khartoum last month, he pressed the government to start a reconciliation process for Darfur. "There is a major tear in the social fabric of Darfur," Snyder said. "There has to be a system set up to hold individuals responsible." But so far, there are no signs that international pressure has stopped the livestock thefts. At this meat market in Nyala, Nemen Maki Fage, an Arab trader and butcher, attributed the abundance of animals to "spoils of war." He said he was unconcerned about tribal markings on the cattle. Besides, he said, it was possible that the animals had not been stolen but had simply been sold. "The police don't come here to investigate. And the prices of the cattle are cheap, and no one stops us," he said, proudly showing five head of cattle he bought for $30 each. "This is Darfur right now." Days later, Rhani, the local tribal leader, read from stacks of police reports: April 16 in Nyala -- 12 people killed, 410 sheep taken. Two months ago, in a nearby village, 400 horses stolen, and on and on. In total, he said, he has reported 300 cases of stolen animals. "But the government is quiet," he said. "I report them and keep the papers. If there is ever justice, I will use them." Later that afternoon, Rhani again drove to the market. In one corner, Arab traders carrying cell phones prodded the cattle. Calls were made. Money changed hands quickly. In another corner, the pungent smell of freshly slaughtered meat rose in waves as it was cooked over charcoal at dozens of tiny stands. "They are roasting our wealth," Rhani whispered. The stench of detritus -- a jumble of wrappings, stripped-clean bones and plastic soda bottles -- filled the dirt footpaths. Women carrying tomatoes, basil, onions and plastic bags of salt hawked their goods. A hulking leg of goat rested on a donkey cart, flies swarming happily atop its pink skin. The meat was carried to the grill, where a long line of customers waited.

NYT October 18, 2004 TRANSCRIPT A Promise Unkept he following is a transcript of a special Op-Ed report by Nicholas D. Kristof about the Darfur region of Sudan. 1: Why Should We Care It was so frustrating early in the year to have all this energy devoted to marking the 10-year anniversary of the Rwandan genocide and everybody solemnly proclaiming that this can never happen again, and meanwhile it was happening again in Darfur. Darfur is a huge area in the west of Sudan. And there's been a long-time competition between Arab nomads and African tribesman who are mostly farmers. There's a competition for water, for forage, for their livestock. And it burst into greater contention in early 2003 when a low-level rebellion began. Around the end of last year the Sudanese government apparently decided it was going to resolve the problem once and for all. And it armed Arab raiders called the Janjaweed and they went around Darfur and began wiping out villages. And the result was that more than 1.5 million people were forced away from their homes. The U.N. describes it as the world's worst humanitarian crisis today. I've been to the Darfur area now three times. I don't normally go repeatedly to the same place, but after I went in March, you know, I felt there is really something profoundly evil going on that you have a government trying to wipe out a people, and that the world has had a lot of experience with genocide, and that this time there is something we can do to block it if we just kind of jump up and down and point it out. I think there's a tendency for Americans to think: Look, this a long way away, I'm sure it's really sad, but Africa's always a mess, people are always killing each other - Why should we do anything? I think one answer is that America has values as well as interests. But we also do have a real interest in an Africa that is stable. We're going to be getting more and more of our oil from West Africa, including Chad. And the mess in Darfur is already infecting other countries around it. And at the moment we have a window to lean on the Sudanese government and the rebels to try to reach a peace agreement. Otherwise we're going to be looking after and funding the lives of the people from Darfur for decades to come. 2: America and Genocide Two of the people that I really wanted to find on this trip were Nijah and Nibraz, the two orphans that I introduced in that opening video clip. I asked all around the camp where they might be. Finally on my last day in the camp I found them. Now Nijah and Nibraz are just much healthier than they were before. They look great. Their needs are fundamentally being met now. One of the more horrifying cases is Zahra Abdel Karim. She told me about how the Janjaweed had shot to death her husband, Adam, and her 7-year-old son, as well as three of her brothers. And then they grabbed her 4-year-old son and slashed his throat. Then they took her and her two sisters away, gang-raped them. They shot one of her sisters and cut the throat of the other. And then they discussed how to mutilate her. They told her: ``You belong to me. You're a slave of the Arabs and this is the sign of the slave,'' and then they slashed her leg with a sword and then let her hobble away stark naked. When I met her in June she was hungry, without any shelter, trying desperately to look after her young children. This time I met her again, she has a tent, her child is in much better shape. She said that now she has food, she's got clean water and there's medical care for her and the child. One of my favorite people that I've met from the Darfur area is Magboula Muhammad Khattar, who's a young woman whose husband and mother and father and nephews were all killed by the Janjaweed. I met her under a tree where she was trying desperately to keep her youngest son alive. I thought he was going to die at that point. In October I met her again in the camp. We had a better reunion and she's in much better shape now. She has a tent. She's got food. She's got clean water. Her son survived and is now playing around the tent. And she doesn't know whether she'll ever be able to go back to her village, but it's a sign of what a dedicated international effort can achieve - that it really can keep people alive. 3: In the Safety of the Camps I wanted to find out what is happening in the areas that international community has not had access to. We know that the relief agencies have been able to get to about two-thirds of the two million people affected by the Darfur disaster. But that leaves an awful lot of people who aren't getting any kind of help. Sudan has refused to give me a visa to go into Darfur, so I ended up hiring a pickup truck and crossing a shallow creek and roaming part of Darfur. Furawiya is a market town that is important because it has the only water for about 20 miles around. Everybody, even hiding in hills, they have to come down to Furawiya to get water. And that was something that the Janjaweed used very effectively. I talked to one family where seven men had been killed successively when they went desperately at night to try to get water to save their families, to keep their families alive. The area around Furawiya is loosely controlled by one of the rebel armies, the Sudan Liberation Army. The rebels, while they're not well-equipped or armed, they're very dedicated because in many cases their families have been killed by the Janjaweed. They feel like they're fighting for their lives, for their family lives and for their own villages. Essentially, the strong ones who can make the walk have all fled to Chad. And those you find now are the weak, the frail, the old, the young, the infirmed, those who can't get out. And their stories are just heartrending. One family I met was a woman called Zahra Mochtar Muhammad. She's a 25-year-old woman whose husband was killed by the Janjaweed. And in the commotion of the gunfire and the burning huts her children all scattered in different directions. Later she found the bodies of her 4-year-old and her 2-year-old. They had run away together, apparently the 4-year-old was looking after the 2-year-old. They hid. And they died of thirst together. So now she's looking after her four remaining children with no blankets, no food, no house to live in. I was asking Zahra why she didn't go to Chad. And she said that she didn't have transport. But she also said: Look, why do I have to go to Chad? Why not bring the food here? The answer, unfortunately, is that it is awfully risky to travel around Darfur, and aid workers have been targeted. The people working for those aid agencies are enormously dedicated and are doing difficult and dangerous work. They're real heroes. But there still are limits to what they can do. I was only able to see one tiny part of Darfur. But if you multiply the stories of the people that I met by hundreds of thousands you begin to get some sense of scale of the problem. 4: Beyond the Reach of Help After all those months when Washington was simply not paying attention to what was going on in Darfur, I just can't tell you how satisfying it was to see the first presidential debate between President Bush and Senator Kerry and to see them talk about the Darfur crisis. It was really important to have President Bush firmly describe what was going on as genocide and say that was the policy of the U.S. government. The long history of genocide has been that the U.S. has done almost nothing while genocide has gone on, and then years afterward has belatedly acknowledged that we should have done more. President Bush, in my view, hasn't done nearly enough on Darfur. But he has done more than any other world leader and he did way more than President Clinton did during the Rwandan genocide. I wish that he would declare a no-fly zone. I wish he would lean on the Sudanese government more. But I also think it's really important to acknowledge that he has brought the administration around very firmly against what's going on. He has vastly increased humanitarian aid and he has saved a huge number of lives in Darfur. Senator Kerry began speaking out very strongly in July about what was going on. In the debate it seemed to me that he reached a real milestone by saying that in addition to the African Union forces, he would be prepared to introduce American troops. Politically I don't actually think that is feasible. In the U.S. right now there is very little appetite for sending U.S. troops somewhere else. But I also think that was just so important to recognize the seriousness of the situation and to acknowledge that if we can help in some way by introducing some modest number of troops that it's worth doing that. Genocide is an issue that it is worth intervening to try to stop. 5: What Can We Do? Well, what can we do? The immediate need is obviously to keep people alive. And we have to improve humanitarian support. The U.S. has done a very good job so far. Maybe the most important thing, though, is that we have to apply pressure on the Sudanese government. People tend to say, well, why would the Sudanese government listen to us? The reason is that the Sudanese authorities, they're not the Taliban, they're not these wild ideologues. They're survivors. They're pragmatists. They want to stay in power. And I really believe that they made a calculated decision. They had a headache in Darfur. They had conflicts between Arabs and non-Arabs. It's an Arab government. And so it decided that the simplest way and the most cost-effective solution was genocide. And if we raise the cost of that genocide so that they have to back off and rethink that analysis, then I think we can change their policy. And I don't think it'll take all that much to do that. And in the past we've leaned on them and twisted their arms and we got them to cut their ties with terror organizations. And if we're willing to apply pressure on them for those purposes we should also be willing to apply the same pressure to stop a genocide that has already killed 100,000 people. If we look back at how we dealt with the Rwandan situation, President Clinton later said that his biggest regret was not responding to the genocide there. I think that we're going to look back at what happened in Darfur and feel tremendously guilty as well that we didn't do more early enough to save the 100,000 lives that are already lost and the 10,000 more that are being lost each month. But we still have a window. The bottom line is that there are going to be many tens of thousands of people more who are going to die even in the best of situations. But we can save hundreds of thousands if we act quickly and if we're willing to act firmly against the genocide that is underway here in Darfur. Thank you for joining me at this look at the Darfur crisis. You can follow these links to my columns about Darfur, to information about how you can help, to other avenues of information about Darfur. And as always, we welcome your comments. For The New York Times, I'm Nicholas Kristof.

Village Voice 19 Oct 2004 What's Fueling the Genocide in Darfur? By Nat Hentoff, Village Voice A woman and teenage girl who were raped and abducted by soldiers in western Darfur have claimed that the Sudanese army organized airlifts of sex slaves to serve as the "wives" of government soldiers in Khartoum. . . . "Each of us was raped by between three and six men," said Bokur [Hamis, 21]. "One woman refused to have sex with them, so they split her head into pieces with an axe in front of us." – Benjamin Joffe-Walt, Sunday Telegraph, London, September 19 None of the [oil] companies operating in Sudan can reliably ensure that they and their operations, singly or collectively, do not facilitate or benefit from human rights abuses. Indeed, they operate in the midst of the abuses. – Sudan, Oil, and Human Rights, Human Rights Watch, pages 694-695 George W. Bush, in his September 21 speech to the United Nations, urged the formation of a Democracy Fund within the U.N. that "would help countries lay the foundations of democracy by instituting the rule of law in independent courts, a free press, political parties, and trade unions." As old-time labor organizers used to say of companies claiming that their "fully protected workers" didn't need unions, the president is talking of "pie in the sky." Structurally, the United Nations is utterly incapable of assuring the rule of law and human rights in many of its member countries. Human rights abusers Russia and China, for example, have veto powers in the Security Council. And of the U.N. Human Rights Commission, composed of many unremitting human rights abusers, Sudan itself is a proud member. My own fantasy of "pie in the sky" is a parallel, independent, international coalition of countries that would be alert to genocide emerging anywhere in the world – and then, unlike the U.N., move in to stop it. But where are those countries? In real life, real time, and real mass murders and rapes in Darfur, Professor Eric Reeves of Smith College, who has long chronicled the Khartoum government's deadly crimes against its black subjects, is exactly right. Amid the weak, hortatory criticisms of Khartoum's genocide by the U.N. Security Council, Reeves writes, "Khartoum may not be happy with current world attention, but has yet to hear a clearly articulated threat – one that will change its behavior fundamentally." Reeves continues, "The regime seems to be banking on an eventual drifting of international attention . . . away from the catastrophe in Darfur (which will become simply a chronic 'humanitarian problem'). . . . In order to disabuse Khartoum of this notion, international pressure on the regime clearly must include both near- and long-term economic pressure and punishment, and a vigorous divestment campaign offers one means of achieving this." A reminder: Sudan's oil reserves yield $2 billion in annual revenue. That's a vital part of Sudan's economy. But can the diminishing surviving black Africans in Darfur count on "international pressure" from government entities around the world to end Khartoum's horrendous crimes? After Colin Powell told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on September 9 that the government of Sudan is responsible for the continuing genocide in Darfur, a lead editorial, "Genocide," in the September 12 Washington Post declared: "In an act without precedent since the U.N. Genocide Convention was adopted in 1948, a government accused a sitting counterpart [government] of genocide. . . . And yet the accused government may not pay a price for committing this worst of all humanitarian crimes, because there is a limit to how much powerful nations care." (Emphasis added.) In Darfur, the black woman who refused to have sex with Khartoum's soldiers who captured her – and had her head split into pieces as a result – is no longer in a position to testify to the prediction of that Washington Post editorial, except as one of the many thousands of posthumous black witnesses to this worst of all current crimes against humanity. Accordingly, we must begin to enact Eric Reeves's plan for an insistent divestment campaign against American private and public institutions that profit from investing in the international oil companies whose revenues allow Khartoum to arm the government soldiers and Arab Janjaweed rapists and murderers committing this genocide. Eric Reeves emphasizes that "U.S. public pension plans alone own over 91 billion dollars of equity (shares) in companies [doing business in Sudan] like Siemens AG [Germany], Alcatel SA [France], ABB Ltd. [Switzerland], Tatneft [Russia], PetroChina [China] and a number of others." And note this: "College and university students have a particular opportunity to force institutional endowments to divest from all holdings (including through mutual funds) of Siemens AG, Alcatel SA, ABB Ltd., Tatneft and PetroChina. "During the apartheid era in South Africa, college and university students were an immensely powerful force in breaking down this hateful system of racial discrimination. Students now have [another] urgent task: to ensure that endowment monies are not invested in companies implicit in genocide – the deliberate, ethnically/racially-driven destruction of the African populations of Darfur." Whoever wins the presidential election, there will be many politically involved college students who don't want to be passive when such enormous crimes as those in Darfur are being committed. And I expect many older non-college Americans will want to look into their investments in these murderous oil companies by private American institutions – pension plans, employee retirement systems, mutual funds, etc. – that benefit so many of us.

AP 20 Oct 2004 African Union to Bolster Forces in Darfur ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) -- The African Union agreed Wednesday to boost the number of peacekeepers in Sudan's Darfur region and send a contingent of civilian police to monitor efforts to end violence that has driven more than 1.5 million people from their homes. The bloc's Peace and Security Council voted in favor of the increase in the size of its force in Darfur from 390 to 3,320 troops and civilian police, said Said Djinnit, head of the 16-member council. The enhanced force should be in the region by early next month, Djinnit said. The force will include 450 unarmed military observers, a major increase from the 80 currently deployed there to monitor a shaky cease-fire between two rebel groups fighting government troops and allied militia. The observers have been protected by an armed security force of 310 troops. That force will be increased to 2,341. The new mission will also include 815 civilian police officers and 164 civilian staff, Djinnit said. The $220 million, one-year operation will be funded mainly by the European Union and the United States, Djinnit said. Darfur's troubles stem from long-standing tensions between nomadic Arab tribes and their African farming neighbors over dwindling water and agricultural land. Those tensions exploded into violence in February 2003 when two African rebel groups took up arms over what they regard as unjust treatment by the government in their struggle with Arab countrymen. An estimated 70,000 people have died since the conflict broke out, according to U.N. figures. Nearly 1.5 million more have fled to refugee camps. Secretary of State Colin Powell said in July that Sudan's government and allied Arab militia, the Janjaweed, had committed acts of genocide against Darfur's non-Arab villagers. The United Nations has begun investigating possible war crimes in Darfur, but no other government besides the United States has called the situation in Darfur a genocide. ``Abuses are still taking place,'' said Jean Hilaire Mbeambea, Cameroon's ambassador to the African Union. ``There is mass suffering, but it is not genocide.'' Meanwhile, a Sudanese official said authorities in Khartoum have handed down their first known conviction against a Janjaweed leader. Mohammed Barbary Ahab el-Nabi, an Awalad Zeid tribal leader in the western town of el-Geneina, was sentenced last week after being found guilty of ``looting cows and burning properties'' in the village of Dory Monkish, said Abdel Moniem Taha, the director of human rights at the Sudanese Justice Ministry. Sudan is under international pressure to crack down on Arab militiamen blamed for attacking African villagers in Darfur. Taha told The Associated Press that police arrested el-Nabi on Oct. 4 and that a judge sentenced him to three years in jail and fined him $39,000. El-Nabi was given 15 days to appeal. The 53-member African Union calls the new mission a ``peacekeeping force.'' The force's new mandate stipulates that it must ``protect civilians whom it encounters under imminent threat,'' although ``it is understood that the protection of civilians is the primary responsibility of the government of Sudan.'' The African force, however, has not drawn up the specific rules of engagement, he said, adding that these ``are to be further discussed.'' No exact deployment date was given, but Djinnit said AU officials ``hope to have the enhanced force in the region by the end of this month, or very early next month.'' The force is intended to build confidence between warring parties as they negotiate an end to the 20-month conflict. The troops will create a ``secure environment'' for distribution of humanitarian aid to those affected by the conflict and encourage people to return to their homes, Djinnit said. The force will monitor the security of those who fled their homes, check on any attacks by pro-government Arab militia, observe the disarmament of the militia, and investigate cease-fire violations, Djinnit said. The enlarged force was approved a day before the Sudanese government and Darfur rebels were to resume peace talks in Nigeria, where the two sides are expected to discuss security arrangements to allow refugees to return home and aid workers to operate without hindrance. During earlier talks, which broke down last month, the government and rebels agreed to provide aid workers free access to people affected by conflict. But one rebel group refused to sign the deal until other security issues were resolved. Djinnit said the 2,341-member force was adequate for the region, which is the size of Iraq. ``The size of the mission is appropriate, given the level of where we are in the peace process, given the conditions in which we are operating, and given the mandate and task of the mission,'' Djinnit said.

ICRC 20 Oct 2004 Press Release 04/58 Sudan: Food survey in Darfur Geneva (ICRC) – A serious food shortage is threatening people living in rural Darfur owing to the current insecurity and the insufficient rains in the region this year. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) recently assessed the food supply in 20 selected villages in Northern, Western and Southern Darfur, where violence and rain shortfalls are directly undermining coping mechanisms that have normally ensured the survival of the communities living there. Villagers have been able to sow only a third of the usual crops, and looting of seeds, tools and cattle has further worsened the situation. If people are able to reach their plots to harvest crops, the current food gap could narrow by November or December. In any event most of these limited staple-crop yields will be consumed by next January or February in Western Darfur and by March or April in Northern and Southern Darfur. The overall food shortage is likely to last until the following harvest in 2005. In an effort to prevent further displacement to the camps, the ICRC will maintain its current assistance to the residents of rural areas. By distributing seed and tools for the next farming season (May-July 2005) the ICRC intends to help communities recover from the destruction suffered over the last year. However, this support can succeed only if the security situation improves. The ICRC is engaging in dialogue with all parties to the conflict to remind them of their obligation to ensure, as far as possible, freedom of movement for people and goods, and thus allow basic economic activity to continue. Under international humanitarian law, the civilian population must be protected against dangers arising from military operations. The ICRC has been present in Sudan since 1978. Currently the organization has over 200 expatriates and 2,000 Sudanese staff working in its humanitarian operations throughout the country.

NYT 20 Oct 2004 OP-ED COLUMNIST He Ain't Heavy. . . By NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF SARAHA, Sudan — Allow me to introduce Abdelrahim Khamis Ghani and his little brother, Muhammad. The challenge we Americans face in Sudan is this: Are we willing to save Abdelrahim and Muhammad, and two million more like them? I photographed Abdelrahim and Muhammad in their mostly abandoned Darfur village, where the murderous Janjaweed militia, backed by the Sudanese government, has already killed seven members of their family. The boys have been hiding for months here in a war zone, hungry and frightened and hunted like wild beasts. "We're afraid here," said the boys' older sister, 17-year-old Asha. "We would go if we could. But we have no transport, no camel." This land stinks of fear and death, but perhaps just as striking as the murder and rape are the moral choices that families here are forced to make each day. For Abdelrahim's family members, the choice is whether to let adults and older siblings try to hike to safety in Chad - it's a six-day walk. They could leave one adult behind to try to keep Abdelrahim and Muhammad alive. Or should the whole family stay, putting more people at risk but increasing the chance that the boys can be saved? The family has elected for now to stay here together, surviving by gathering wild seeds to eat. Apart from starvation, the danger is that the Janjaweed or Sudanese troops will return to kill the men and rape and disfigure - and sometimes kill - the women and girls. I sneaked into Darfur in a pickup truck from Chad, roaming a countryside speckled with burned and abandoned villages. I don't know how many survivors in Darfur are still hungry and hunted like these boys, but the number is in the hundreds of thousands. Here, genocide unfurls in slow motion. (For the sights and sounds of my trip to Darfur, click here.) One morning I came across a 10-year-old girl herding goats. She was frightened when she saw my truck, fearing that I might be in the Janjaweed, which had already burned down her home and killed 30 members of her extended family. After it was clear that I was not a threat, the girl's father, Hassan Nahar, emerged from behind a tree. He explained that he had hidden the rest of his family in the hills, but he uses his youngest daughter to keep the goats alive. "I think it is a bit less likely that the Janjaweed would kill a young girl like her," he said. "They would kill the older children." He hid when he saw my truck because there was no way he could protect his child from men with guns, and there was not much point in being killed in front of her. Aid workers, who are doing heroic work in Darfur, face another painful moral calculus. So far, war zones like this part of Darfur have not gotten any help because it is too dangerous. Relief groups must protect their own employees, even if that means allowing Sudanese to die. I did see three Save the Children vehicles on an exploratory mission to see whether the area was safe. Then, a couple of hours after I saw them, a Save the Children car in the same area - I can't be sure if it was one of the same vehicles - hit a mine, and two aid workers were killed. Now aid groups will be even less willing to venture here. I understand the painful ethical choices of Abdelrahim's family, of Mr. Hassan and of the international aid agencies. But what I can't fathom is our own moral choice, our decision to acquiesce in genocide. We in America could save kids like Abdelrahim and Muhammad. This wouldn't require troops, just a bit of gumption to declare a no-fly zone, to press our Western allies and nearby Arab and African states, to impose an arms embargo and other targeted sanctions, to push a meaningful U.N. resolution even at the risk of a Chinese veto, and to insist upon the deployment of a larger African force. Instead, President Bush's policy is to chide Sudan and send aid. That's much better than nothing and has led Sudan to kill fewer children and to kill more humanely: Sudan now mostly allows kids in Darfur like Abdelrahim to die of starvation, instead of heaving them onto bonfires. But fundamentally, U.S. policy seems to be to "manage" the genocide rather than to act decisively to stop it. The lackadaisical international response has already permitted the deaths of about 100,000 people in Darfur, and up to 10,000 more are dying each month. We should look Abdelrahim and Muhammad in the eye and feel deeply ashamed.

NYT 21 Oct 2004 Rare Glimpse Inside Militia's Stronghold in Sudan By SOMINI SENGUPTA MISTARIHA, Sudan - This is the headquarters of the gunmen who have come to personify horror in Sudan: the pro-government militias deemed to be responsible for some of the most grotesque crimes of the war in Darfur. For members of a militia the government has promised to dismantle, they are living luxuriously. On the dry grass rests a satellite dish. Nearby is a sparkling mosque. Inside a freshly painted green building is a parlor outfitted with rare amenities - overstuffed vinyl sofas and ceiling fans that gently purr, with the aid of a generator. Men in fresh fatigues loll nearby. The uniforms are like those worn by the Sudanese military, with one important exception: they bear no insignias, no name tags. It is one measure of the lingering murkiness of these forces, their mission and their ties to Sudan's government. The chain of command under which they operate, their numbers, even the weapons they have at hand - all these things remain impossible to pin down. Foreign visitors are rare. A group of foreign journalists was allowed to visit recently only because they came with cease-fire monitors from the African Union, and only after an African Union commander pressed a Sudanese Army representative. If the gunmen have nothing to hide, he suggested, they ought to let in journalists. The local commander, Abdulwaheed Saeed, 40, agreed on condition that the journalists take no photographs and ask no questions at the base camp itself. As for the dangers of future prosecution in connection with war crimes, Mr. Saeed, a 21-year-veteran of the Sudanese Army, was uncowed. "I am a military man," he bellowed. "If I am taken to court, so will all the government. We are in this together." Therein lies a problem for the government, which has alternately denied its links to these fighters - calling them janjaweed, or bandits who take advantage of the war - and defended the existence of legitimate paramilitary forces to help guard Sudan against a rebellion. Contrary to promises made to the United Nations, the government has not begun to identify the militiamen under its influence, let alone disarm them. "To our knowledge," said Radhia Achouri, the spokeswoman for the United Nations mission in Khartoum, the government "has not instructed them to cease acts of violence and to lay down their weapons." If anything, government officials have lately turned the tables and asked the international community for help in identifying the "real" janjaweed. Yet in nearby Kabkabiya, a man who described himself as the militia's legal adviser, Omar el-Amin, said the fighters, whom he estimated at 2,000, collect a government salary equivalent to about $11 a month. "They work under official military command," he said. The fighters say they have been paid, clothed, trained and guided directly by the government since the eruption of a guerrilla war here in the west more than 18 months ago. They say they exist because the government called on them, nomadic Arab tribes, to defend their land against rebels from enemy African tribes. Those Arabs who were the first to take up the call to arms, it seems, had pending grievances with the Fur and the Zaghawa, the two principal African tribes behind the insurgency, grievances that had less to do with race than with disputes over land and water rights. Arabs are mainly nomadic herders; Africans are largely farmers. The men here eschew the term janjaweed, an insult in Arabic that translates roughly as evildoers on horseback. Instead, they variously call themselves the Border Intelligence Guard, the Second Reconnaissance Brigade, "the Quick and the Horrible," or simply mujahadeen. They owe their allegiance to one man: Musa Hillal, a notorious Arab tribal leader whom human rights groups and foreign officials, including from the United States, regard as a ringleader responsible for the atrocities committed by his forces. In published interviews, Mr. Hillal has said he was enlisted to recruit pro-government militiamen when the Darfur rebellion first emerged in early 2003. Documents disclosed through Human Rights Watch, the New York-based advocacy group, show how local government officials allowed Mr. Hillal's men to operate with impunity. For Khartoum to abandon him now would very likely be perilous. "He doesn't need the government, the government needs him," said Ghazi Suleiman, a human rights advocate who calls himself Mr. Hillal's friend. "In the law, we call him an accomplice." Mr. Hillal is sequestered in the capital and, friends say, kept under close watch by state security forces. He no longer entertains foreign journalists. Najib el-Kheir Abdelwahab, a Sudan state minister for foreign affairs, went as far as to suggest that to take aim at Mr. Hillal would be to invite a tribal war. Observers from the African Union say there is no question that the paramilitary outfit here, whatever its name, is in the vanguard of the government's counterinsurgency effort in the western Sudan. In turn, they say, these fighters are responsible for some of the most egregious human rights violations over the last year and a half: burning villages, gang-raping women, slaughtering civilians who belong to enemy African tribes. The African Union monitors say it is semantics to quibble over whether these fighters are regular military or irregular militia. "As far as I'm concerned, there's no difference," said Cmdr. Seth Appiah-Mensah of the Ghanaian Navy, who serves as the African Union commander for this fractious sector of North Darfur. "I would say the janjaweed is, for now, the government-backed militia who go about persecuting, harassing innocent civilians with impunity." These days, by all independent accounts, their large campaigns of devastation have stopped, though harassment continues, particularly of women. The gunmen seem under no pressure to hide. They cruise from town to town on market days, buying grain and cigarettes, ancient machine guns on their shoulders. For now, this modest batch of unarmed African Union monitors serve as the sole eyes and ears of the outside world. Their resources are as limited as their authority. Two teams of eight monitors, including a representative from the government and one each from the two rebel factions, are responsible for scouring these hills and plains. Their mandate, under a hard-fought agreement with the government, is to monitor cease-fire violations, not to enforce the law. Barely 300 monitors are here now, plus a small band of armed soldiers mandated to guard them. More monitors are on the way. After months of balking, the government has agreed to allow up to 4,000 African Union troops to enter Darfur. But, African Union officials say, they will be useless unless the facilities - tents, water tanks, trucks, fuel - can be set up beforehand. Even now, 300 African Union troops are biding their time in the provincial capital, El Fasher, because the resources have not yet arrived to deploy them. For those who are here, like Maj. Panduleni Martin from Zambia and his team, delicate diplomacy is required. On this morning, he and his team ventured into Mistariha. As they did, they passed one torched, abandoned village after another. The Sudanese military representative, Lt. Col. Abu Asala Majzoub, sat quietly in the passenger seat, occasionally leafing through a prayer book. He said he had no idea who had burned the villages. Every now and then, a shepherd from an Arab tribe could be seen guiding a flock of sheep, or a camel, through the blackened remains. On the bank of a dry river bed waited Mr. Saeed, the militia commander, and a company of half-dozen of his men perched in a pickup truck. One gingerly approached the African Union monitors. He extended his hand to one of the rebel members of the team. They exchanged pleasantries about the quality of camel's milk in the area. Mr. Saeed complained that rebels had burst into a nearby village two days ago and stolen some cattle. Major Martin urged him to file a formal report. The major then met another uniformed man who gave his name as Muhammad Hamdan. He identified himself a member of the "civil defense," then as a mujahadeen. Then he offered a trickle of contradictions about his history in the force, finally telling Major Martin that he joined in response to a government call last year to protect the land. Once this war is over, what will happen to these men? They will have to be further trained, Mr. Saeed said. Then, he maintained, they would be incorporated into the regular army.

NYT 25 Oct 2004 New Guerrilla Factions Arise in Sudan Ahead of Peace Talks By SOMINI SENGUPTA For the Record ABUJA, Nigeria Oct. 24 - As many as two new guerrilla factions have emerged in western Sudan, potentially complicating peace talks that are scheduled to start here on Monday between the Sudanese government and its two established rebel foes, the United Nations top envoy to Sudan said in an interview on Sunday. Little is known about the power and political objectives of the new insurgents. But with their recent attacks, they have posed a new source of insecurity in an already traumatized region and have imperiled the safety of African Union monitors and aid workers. The new guerrillas are not among the signers of the cease-fire agreements between the government of Sudan and the two established Darfur rebel groups, the Justice and Equality Movement and the Sudan Liberation Army. "At the beginning, I thought they were an artificial creation, but now I think it's more serious," said Jan Pronk, the United Nations special representative on Sudan. "It's a force with which you have to reckon." Mr. Pronk, who is from the Netherlands, said that one group was based near the northwestern border with Chad and that the other was in southern Darfur. According to Maj. Gen. Festus Okonkwo, a Nigerian who commands the African Union Cease-Fire Commission, the new northern group, the National Movement for Reform and Development, attacked a government convoy on Oct. 6. General Okonkwo said it was unclear whether the same faction was responsible for planting mines that killed two aid workers recently. General Okonkwo described the group as a breakaway faction of the Justice and Equality Movement. That faction's chief negotiator, Ahmed Tugod Lissan, said the new group had been created by an ousted field commander of the Justice and Equality Movement who now is collaborating with Khartoum and its allies in Chad. "They have been created by the government," Mr. Lissan declared. The government said it knew nothing about the group. News of the latest factions came on the eve of peace talks. The talks are to be mediated by the African Union and are aimed at ending a nearly 20-month conflict that has left more than 1.5 million people homeless and, according to the World Food Program, claimed 70,000 lives from hunger and disease. United Nations officials have said that the insecurity in the region has threatened the delivery of emergency food aid. As rebel and government delegates arrived here in recent days - rebels in suits and coats, the government officials in white robes and turbans - they took turns accusing one another of bad faith. The Sudanese agriculture minister and chief negotiator here, Magzoub el-Khalifa Ahmed, blamed rebels for fomenting trouble across Darfur to sustain international attention. "They need to stimulate all these governments and all these organizations on their side by making the situation worse on the ground," he said. Rebels said the government could not be trusted. "My honest feeling is they're interested in delaying," said the Sudan Liberation Army's chief negotiator, Sharif Harir. No one expects that the talks, which are scheduled to last up to three weeks, will yield a comprehensive peace deal. The previous session broke off in September after disagreements over whether the government would disarm the allied Arab militias that have killed and brutalized villagers in Darfur. The United Nations Security Council, threatening sanctions, has pressed Sudan to disarm the gunmen and has urged both sides to allow access for aid. Kofi Annan, the United Nations secretary general, has commissioned independent observers to assess whether the violence in Darfur constitutes genocide. The Security Council is scheduled to hold a special session on Sudan next month in Nairobi, the Kenyan capital. The Security Council has only met outside its headquarters in New York twice; once in 1952 in Paris, and again 20 years later in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. On Sunday afternoon, after speaking to delegates in a closed-door session, Mr. Pronk said he had urged both sides to take on the political grievances that led to conflict. "We are trying to make clear to them, and I am, 'You are here to fight for your people; you have to do that today,' " Mr. Pronk added. "I'm telling them, 'Don't lay mines.' " The rebels' political goals have never been clear, beyond vague demands for the sharing of wealth and power in Sudan. That could also be a potential stumbling block in the talks. Meanwhile, preparations were under way for the deployment of additional African Union troops in Darfur. By the end of the year, General Okonkwo said, troop strength would grow to 3,320, from the current 463. A delicately worded mandate authorizes the African Union to monitor cease-fire violations and protect civilians who are "under imminent threat." That language is purposefully open to interpretation. The commander said his soldiers could not enforce the law, but added, "We cannot sit down and watch civilians being killed while we are around." For the Record: Oct. 28, 2004, Thursday An article on Monday about new guerrilla factions in the Sudan region of Darfur misattributed the estimate that 70,000 people had died from hunger and disease in Darfur refugee camps. (Because of an editing error, the error was repeated yesterday in an article about the Security Council's plan to convene a two-day meeting in Kenya to focus attention on the crisis.) The figure was from the World Health Organization, not the World Food Program.

FindLaw 29 Oct 2004 Rape in Darfur By JOANNE MARINER, The Find Law Writ Oct 27, 2004 -- Aisha, as I'll call her, is seventeen years old but looks much younger. Small and slim, she has delicate features and a quiet voice. When I met her last month in a displaced persons camp in North Darfur, Aisha was sitting on the ground in a makeshift shelter with four other teenage girls. Her voice rose with emotion as she described how, just two evenings before, the group was attacked by Arab men in military uniforms. "The little girls got away but we two were caught," she related, referring to herself and a sixteen-year-old friend. "They called us 'abid' [slaves], and said they were going to make us their wives." Both Aisha and her friend were violently raped by their attackers. Held for hours, they finally escaped without their clothing, fleeing naked back to the camp and arriving after midnight. That same night, four other women from the camp - ranging from teenagers to married women in their thirties -- were also raped. Rape in Darfur is a weapon of war, one that is illegal, illegitimate and yet dismayingly widespread. Over the past year and a half, since the Sudanese government and allied Arab militia began their scorched earth campaign against the region's African communities, the women of Darfur have faced the unrelenting threat of sexual violence. Rather than prosecute the soldiers and militiamen implicated in the attacks, the Sudanese government denies that the problem exists. Indeed, in a recent inquiry, the government acknowledged only two cases of rape from the entire Darfur conflict. And Sudan's chief negotiator at ongoing peace talks has dismissed reports of widespread sexual violence, calling them "a lot of fabrication." Rape as a War Crime Rape in war, if committed by combatants, is both a grave human rights violation and a war crime. Yet it has long been mischaracterized as a private crime, the ignoble act of wayward soldiers. Worse still, it has been accepted precisely because it is so common. According to the U.N. special rapporteur on violence against women, rape has been "the least condemned war crime." This is true despite the fact that, throughout history, "the rape of hundreds of thousands of women and children in all regions of the world has been a bitter reality." The problem is not one of gaps in the law. Both at the national and international levels, the law has long recognized crimes of sexual violence. Rape can, depending on the circumstances, violate the 1949 Geneva Conventions, the 1948 Genocide Convention, and the 1984 Torture Convention; it can also be a crime against humanity under the Nuremberg Charter and the 1998 treaty creating the International Criminal Court. But while the necessary legal norms exist, the will to enforce them often does not. Because of deeply-rooted discriminatory attitudes toward women, crimes of sexual violence are frequently considered incidental violations, less serious than those that primarily affect men. In recent years, some degree of progress has been made. The international criminal courts for both the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda have, for example, prosecuted crimes of sexual violence. In 1998, in a particularly historic ruling, the Rwanda tribunal found former mayor Jean-Paul Akayesu guilty of nine counts of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes -- the first time that rape was found to be an act of genocide. Still, progress toward accountability for crimes of sexual violence is far from complete. Notably, although tens of thousand of women were raped during the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, only a handful of rape cases have been prosecuted in Rwanda's domestic courts. Rape in Darfur In Darfur, the rapes continue. According to Pamela Shifman, a U.N. expert on violence and sexual exploitation who recently visited the region, rape is being used "to terrorize individual women and girls … to terrorize their families and to terrorize entire communities. No woman or girl is safe." Shifman told the media that every woman and girl she had spoken to had either been sexually assaulted herself, or knew of someone who had been assaulted. But accountability for these rapes -- let alone future protection -- seems unlikely. The women whom I spoke to at the refugee camp in North Darfur tried to report their rape to the local police outpost, but the police response was telling. "They didn't write anything down," said one of the women. "They didn't ask us any questions. They didn't even ask our names." "They did nothing." - Joanne Mariner is a New York-based human rights attorney. She just returned from her second visit to Darfur, where she documented rape and other abuses for Human Rights Watch.

Xinhua 28 Oct 2004 US to spend 40 million dollars on Darfur ABUJA, Oct 28, 2004 (Xinhua via COMTEX) - United States Ambassador to Nigeria John Campbell said Thursday his country has decided to spend 40 million US dollars to ensure the return of peace to the war-torn Darfur region of Sudan. Campbell made the disclosure here this morning when he watched the take-off of the first batch of 47 Nigerian troops that left for Darfur to beef up the strength of Nigerian troops already in the area. The Nigerian troops, which comprised of four officers and 43 soldiers, departed the Abuja International Airport on board a US Air Force plane at 10:15 a.m. (0915 GMT). Campbell said the US government had spent nearly 20 million dollars "in this enabling mission operation, while a further expense of almost 20 million dollars had been identified as part of an international effort." He said the United States considered the peace operation under the leadership of the African Union (AU) and Nigeria "very seriously." According to the ambassador, the US government will continue to provide support to ensure the return of peace to the region. The Darfur conflict erupted when two rebel forces alleging economic and political marginalization of the African black people by the Arab-led government in Khartoum took up arms to protest for the right. The conflict has escalated into what the United Nations called the world's current worst humanitarian crisis and caused thousands of deaths and forced about one million to flee to neighboring Chad or to be internally displaced.

AFP 28 Oct 2004 Sudan's Beshir says aid agencies are 'real enemy' in Darfur KHARTOUM, Oct 28 (AFP) - Sudanese President Omar el-Beshir has launched an attack on international humanitarian agencies in the troubled Darfur region, calling them enemies in comments published Thursday. "Organizations operating in Darfur are the real enemies," the official Al-Anbaa daily quoted Beshir as saying, without elaborating. "The conspiracy against Darfur is not new," he added, in remarks to representatives of native administrations in Darfur. The president also accused the West of fuelling the 20-month conflict in the region that has left tens of thousands of people dead, displaced more than 1.4 million others from their homes and forced a further 200,000 into Chad. "Western countries are funding the unrest in Darfur," Beshir charged, adding that there were also other elements that wanted to "explode the situation" in the region, again without elaborating. He argued that those "claiming to be concerned" about the crisis were "liars and hypocrites. They are all enemies." Beshir and other officials in Khartoum have repeatedly accused NGOs of proselytising in Sudan and charged that the West was fueling the conflict in a bid to plunder the country's resources. The United Nations says the conflict between the government, backed by proxy Arab militia, and ethnic minority rebels has created the world's worst humanitarian crisis. Beshir's government has come under mounting pressure over its involvement in what Washington has termed genocide and has been accused of hampering the relief effort. The UN Security Council has also passed resolutions demanding that Khartoum disarm and disband marauding militias or face sanctions on its vital oil industry. Beshir insisted that the crisis was a "Sudanese issue" and "not the responsibility of the Security Council" or any other party.

SUNA 29 Oct 2004 Sudan FM begins tour to nine West African countries KHARTOUM, Oct 28, 2004 (SUNA) -- Foreign Minister, Mustafa Osman Ismail, Thursday left to the Nigerian capital, Abuja, in the context of a week-long tour to nine west African countries. Ismail will hand over messages from the President of the Republic, Field Marshal Omer Al-Bashir, to the presidents of the nine counties. In a press statement to SUNA, Ismail said that he will acquaint presidents and senior officials in the nine countries with the developments in Darfur issue and the government efforts to normalize the situation there, outcome of the recent mini-African summit in Libya on Darfur crisis, besides progress of Sudan's relations with each of the nine countries. He said that he will put in mind during his tour the confusion created by the Western media regarding Darfur issue, stressing Sudan keenness to avoid any confusion in the West African countries about Darfur issue. The Foreign Minister said that the tour will provide an opportunity to discuss ways of consolidating the relations between Sudan and the West African countries and to exchange views on different issues of mutual concern.

Reuters 29 Oct 2004 Sudan and Darfur rebels meet face to face for talks By Silvia Aloisi ABUJA, Oct 29 (Reuters) - Sudanese government delegates and Darfur rebels agreed on Friday to meet face to face for the first time at talks in Nigeria to discuss a draft security framework aimed at breaking a deadlock in negotiations. Both sides have expressed doubts over the framework, which African Union mediators hope will stop violence in Darfur that has driven more than 1.5 million people from their homes. "There is going to be a plenary session tonight," a mediator told Reuters in the Nigerian capital Abuja, where the talks are being held. The draft security proposal requires the government to make good on pledges to disarm their Arab and Janjaweed allies and identify any other militias they have been supporting. The document will call on both sides to cooperate with the AU ceasefire commission and say where their forces are located. Rebels have voiced scepticism over the document, saying it does not mention a demand for a no-fly zone over Darfur or tell the government to pull back its forces to barracks. "We don't think that this will guarantee security on the ground," said Abdullahi Osman, adviser to the rebel Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), on Friday. Sudanese government representatives at the talks say the document is weak because there is no demand for rebels to garrison their forces. The United Nations says Darfur is one of the world's worst humanitarian crises, which has killed around 70,000 people through disease and malnutrition since March. There are no reliable figures for how many people have died in the fighting. The top U.N. envoy in Sudan, Jan Pronk, has said a U.N. Security Council resolution demanding that the violence stop in Darfur and a humanitarian protocol drawn up in April mean the two sides need not discuss aid access or security, which stalled a previous round of talks in Abuja. Rebels have refused to sign a humanitarian deal, though they have agreed to it in principle, until a deal on security had been reached. A hundred Rwandan troops prepare to fly to Darfur on Saturday to join Nigerian soldiers that have just arrived in the vast arid region. The AU force's main job is to monitor a ceasefire agreed in April that each side accuses the other of breaking, but their mandate also includes protecting civilians threatened with immediate harm. The Darfur rebellion began in February 2003 after years of low-level fighting between mainly African farmers and Arab nomads over scarce resources. The rebels accuse Khartoum of using the mounted Janjaweed to loot and burn non-Arab villages. Khartoum denies the charges, arguing over the exact definition of the militia it says is one of many armed groups separate from paramilitary groups recognised by the government.

Reuters 30 Oct 2004 Rwanda Troops Arrive in Sudan's Darfur Region Sat Oct 30, 2004 01:04 PM ET By Finbarr O'Reilly EL-FASHER, Sudan (Reuters) - Rwandan troops arrived in Sudan's remote Darfur region Saturday to join Nigerian soldiers monitoring a shaky cease-fire in the country's troubled and vast west, officials said. The troops are among around 3,300 due to arrive from several countries in an expanded African Union mission there. After years of skirmishes between Arab nomads and mostly non-Arab farmers over scarce resources in arid Darfur, rebels took up arms early last year accusing Khartoum of neglect and of using mounted Arab militias to loot and burn non-Arab villages, a charge the government denies. The AU troops hope to help rejuvenate an April cease-fire between the rebels and government forces in the region where fighting has driven more than 1.6 million people from their homes and tens of thousands have died. The 65 Rwandans, with their military equipment and food, were flown by U.S. military aircraft, which transported 50 Nigerians to Darfur Thursday. A total of 237 soldiers are expected to leave Kigali for Darfur in the next five days. "These forces will be protecting cease-fire observers on the ground," said General Marcel Gatsinzi, Rwanda's minister of defense. They will join some 155 Rwandan soldiers who arrived in Darfur on Aug. 15. The United Nations says the cease-fire is not holding, an issue which has held up peace talks in the Nigerian capital Abuja, with both sides accusing each other of violations. The expanded AU force will support some 150 cease-fire monitors and 300 troops already in the region the size of France, and will have a new mandate including some powers to protect civilians. Previously, the force could only monitor the cease-fire. The United Nations calls the situation one of the world's worst humanitarian crises. It estimates at least 70,000 people have died from malnutrition and disease in the past seven months alone, a figure the Sudanese government disputes. The Nigerians expect to deploy another 350 soldiers over the next few weeks, bringing its total deployment to a battalion of 550. Other troops are expected to be sent from other, as-yet unspecified countries. (Additional reporting by Arthur Asiimwe in Kigali)

ArabicNews.com 30 Oct 2004 Egypt hosts an African ministerial meeting on Darfur Egypt-Sudan, Politics, 10/30/2004 Egypt announced it will host a meeting on Darfur within the few coming days including the foreign ministers of countries that took part in Tripoli summit which was held two weeks ago which are Egypt, Chad, Libya and Sudan. News reports in Cairo quoted the Egyptian foreign minister Ahmad Abu al-Gheit has asserted Egypt's rejection to imposing sanctions on Sudan and its support for the government of Khartoum. Abu al-Gheit warned that continued pressure on Sudan will lead to dismantling this country and converting it into several states. Mediators from the African union has proposed a security agreement project for both the two delegations of the government and the rebels who are holding a round of talks in Abuja, capital of Nigeria. One official in the African Union said that the two delegations will study the documents and will be meeting "after several days" to ratify it. The African union also announced that an open session will be held with all participants in Abuja negotiations to start the political dialogue after it was postponed in order to enable the mediators to formulate the draft agreement on security issued which are the pivot of differences between the two sides since the resumption of the negotiations. Worthy mentioning that the Sudanese foreign minister Mustafa Othman Ismael started a tour in the countries of the African Union to brief them on latest developments and explaining the official position of the government regarding the crisis. Meantime, the UN notified Khartoum that the mission which it will dispatch to investigate in Darfur area will arrive in Sudan on November 6th. The Sudanese minister of justice and attorney general Ali Muhammad Othman Yassin said that the UN committee will start its mission by convening a meeting with the Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, the minister of foreign affairs Mustafa Othman Ismael and the minister of the Interior Abdul Rahim Muhammad Hussein. The Sudanese government announced it is ready to receive the committee and to give it all necessary facilitation and aid to carry out its mission in Darfur.


Hirondelle News Agency (Lausanne) 5 Oct 2004 'RPF Shot Down Habyarima's Plane', Reafirmes Guichaoua Arusha French sociologist and last prosecution witness in a six-man genocide trial, Professor Andre Guichaoua Tuesday reiterated his earlier allegations before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) that the Rwandese Patriotic Front (RPF now in power) shot down the plane carrying the former Rwandan President the late Juvenal Habyarimana on April 6,1994. On board were also the former Burundian President Cyprien Ntaryamira and several senior government officials from the two countries. The plane was shot down and crashed into pieces as it was approaching to land at Kanombe airport in Kigali. All people on board died. The presidential entourage was coming home from a meeting in Dar es Salaam Tanzania where they held talks on Rwandan peace process. Professor Guichaoua was responding to a question by Canadian Nicole Bergevin, lead counsel for Pauline Nyiramasuhuko, former minister of Family and Women Affairs on trial for genocide and crimes against humanity with five others. " RPF took a serious initiative to issue an order that the presidential plane be brought down," said Guichaoua adding " I wish to reaffirm it today ." The witness made such allegations the first time in an interview published by the French daily newspaper " Le Monde" on May 6, 2004. He said the parties in conflicts, including the RPF and the ruling party the MRND had both had desire to take up power and rescued the deteriorating security situations in the country. He said within the MRND government itself there were two camps; the moderates who thought they would take up power by the next general elections and on the other hand there was an extremist presidential camp which believed to win power by means of genocide. The government side prepared military training for Interahamwe militia, prepared arms and serious propaganda and on the other hand RPF did the same thing. "The two camps knew each other very well," said Professor Guichaoua adding "the parties worked to the best of their abilities to achieve what they wanted." The witness admitted that when the plane crashed and the president killed no one could easily control the explosion of the massacres. It is believed that the death of the president fueled the massacres throughout Rwanda where as an estimated over a million people were killed, most of whom were Tutsis and moderate Hutus. The witness continues to testify on Wednesday. Other accused are, Pauline Nyiramasuhuko's son and militia leader Arsene Shalom Ntahobali, two former prefects of Butare, Colonel Alphonse Nteziryayo and Syalvain Nsabimana and two former mayors, Elie Ndayambaje of Muganza commune and that of Ngoma, Joseph Kanyabashi. All have pleaded not guilty. The trial opened on June 12, 2001. The case is before Trial Chamber Two presided over by Judge William Hussein Sekule (Tanzania). He is assisted by Judge Arlette Ramaroson (Madagascar) and Judge Solomy Balungi Bossa of Uganda.


AlertNet 26 Oct 2004 Uganda: Forgotten crisis or global cover-up? By Genevieve Butler BRUSSELS (AlertNet) - Political interests at home and abroad are helping to keep northern Uganda's 18-year conflict out of the global spotlight despite the fact that more people have been displaced there than in Sudan's Darfur region, NGOs say. Some aid agencies argue that Uganda's special relationship with donors -- which provide 50 percent of the country's annual budget -- and the country's reputation as a development success story sometimes distract from what the United Nations has described as the world's worst humanitarian crisis. Almost two million people have been displaced in northern Uganda, compared with just over a million in Darfur, yet the crisis rarely makes international headlines or sparks outcry from world leaders. For Ugandan President Yoweri Musuveni, that may be just as well, NGOs say. "The permanence of a crisis helps the government to get more money from the outside," a programme officer for an NGO working in the region said. "The government has not had a great interest to find a solution to the conflict." The officer, like several others contacted by AlertNet, declined to be identified for fear his organisation's operations would be compromised if he criticised the government. The Lord's Resistance Army (LRA), a rebel group and religious sect, has been terrorising northern Uganda for years, uprooting almost the entire population of Acholiland, kidnapping children to camps in southern Sudan and forcing them to become fighters and sex slaves. The Ugandan government denies it is encouraging the insurgency, and Museveni claims he could act more effectively against the LRA if donors lifted spending curbs on defence. But some NGOs say the insurgency has allowed Museveni to consolidate his grip on power. "President Museveni pursues a military solution in part to justify the unreformed army that is a key pillar of his regime," the International Crisis Group (ICG) said in a report issued in April. "Indeed, the war helps him justify and maintain the status quo in Ugandan politics, denying his opposition a power base and offering numerous opportunities for curtailing freedom of expression and association in the name of 'the war against terrorism." ICG's Africa director, Suliman Baldo, said many factors were prolonging the crisis, including traditional historical neglect of the impoverished north, the ineffectiveness of the Ugandan army and a complex relationship with neighbouring Sudan, which has backed the LRA because it accuses Uganda of supporting insurgents in southern Sudan. "Put these factors together and you begin to get the picture," Baldo said. The government has not invested in the north, he said, echoing the ICG report, which found that as long as the situation in the north was dominated by security matters, the monopolisation of power and wealth by southerners would not be questioned. Baldo also said the nature of the war exacerbated the difficulties in resolving it. The LRA insurgency, led by self-proclaimed prophet Joseph Kony, lacks any clear and negotiable political objectives. "One of the difficulties in Uganda is understanding what the rebel cause is all about," said James Allen, programme officer for the International Rescue Committee UK. "Who is the LRA? What are they fighting for? When it's an enemy you don't know, how do you defeat it?" Initially Kony said he was fighting to free his northern Acholi tribe from what he said was oppression by the southern-based government. Later, feeling that his own people had failed to support him, he unleashed a campaign of massacres, mutilations and abductions designed to "cleanse" the Acholi of "sinners". DONOR INTERESTS For their part, donors would rather focus on Uganda's successes, rather than its failures, NGOs say. "Uganda is presented as a champion of development and as a champion in the fight against terrorism," said a representative of an international NGO. "Saying the contrary would be a problem for donors who have invested big money." But money doesn't always end up where it's supposed to go, NGOs say. Another programme officer said funding earmarked for health and education was flowing back into the central government's coffers because the villages in the targeted region were deserted. The best way to monitor the use of aid funding is to work directly in the camps with the cooperation of the local government, he added. "We have a lot of people on the spot to check how the money is being spent, even if there is a problem of security." Another aid official said national authorities needed to show a greater commitment to ensuring the security and protection of their own population and relief workers, given the dangers of working in LRA territory. "We see the army is requesting people to be in camps and is failing to protect them," he said, adding that displaced people were often sitting ducks for LRA raids. "One day the World Food Programme distributes food and the next day the LRA comes and takes the food, kidnaps people to carry the food, and kidnaps children to be child soldiers." ANOTHER DARFUR? U.N. Emergency Relief Coordinator Jan Egeland compared the situation to the well-publicised problems in Sudan's Darfur region. "If they go out (of camps), they are killed as much, or raped as much or worse as in Darfur, by the Lord's Resistance Army and others," Egeland said in a recent statement. Museveni has rejected the comparison, but that hasn't stopped aid workers continuing to make it. "One hundred percent of the population is affected by this kind of crisis -- it's huge," Gael Griette, an expert covering Uganda for the European Commission's Humanitarian Aid Office (ECHO), told AlertNet. Griette said that the entire rural population of Acholiland was in displacement camps. "People have been cut off from their livelihoods, cut off from everything. They are in camps with nothing, and insecurity is very high," he said. "In terms of magnitude and acuteness we can compare what is going on in Northern Uganda to Darfur. "What is very different between the two crises is the way it is addressed in terms of funding, humanitarian agencies being present in the field, and on top of all it is very different in the way it is being covered in the media." Griette said one of the reasons northern Uganda did not get much media coverage was because the LRA had been terrorising the local population for so long that the crisis was seen as old news. "But this is short-sighted because the crisis has tripled in terms of the number of people affected and multiplied by five or six in terms of acuteness in the past two years -- more or less the same time as the Darfur crisis," he said. NO PROTECTION The jury is still out on whether the government is committed to or capable of ending the crisis. Here's how Emmanuel Lutukumoi, a programme director for United Youth Action, a community group based in Northern Uganda, put it in a recent article for New Vision, a Ugandan newspaper: "To date, it is still hard for the Acholi to distinguish who is their worst enemy. They see no difference between Kony and the state that has failed to give them protection and failed to address the root causes of the conflict." But according to Ugandan officials, Kony is now on the run. The Ugandan army said in September it had forced him to flee bases in southern Sudan and return to Uganda for the first time in years, and it has recently claimed significant victories against the LRA. In the past decade, Kony is believed to have orchestrated his violent campaign from hideouts in neighbouring Sudan. Since 1994, Sudan has backed the LRA with weapons and training. Following international pressure, Sudan allowed Ugandan forces to raid LRA bases in its territory under a 2002 accord. But the situation remains precarious, according to the ICG's Baldo. "Reports from the south show that the current phase of collaboration between Uganda and Sudan appears to be affecting the fighting capacity of the LRA," he said. "There are indications that somehow the Sudanese government continues to support the LRA. Therefore they have been playing a dual game here," he said.

AFP 28 Oct 2004 Twelve rebels killed in northern Ugandan raid: army GULU, Uganda, Oct 28 (AFP) - Uganda's military said on Thursday that it had killed 12 Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebels in northern Uganda's Pader district during a raid on a group hiding near a river. "We killed twelve of the rebels on Wednesday evening, recovered three riffles and a landmine during ground and aerial attack on them at the confluence of River Pager and River Ajari," army spokesman Lieutenant Paddy Ankunda told AFP by telephone in Gulu. Ankunda said five wives of the rebel group's commanders have since the attack reported at the nearby military unit of Lagutti, which lies about 35 kilometres (21 miles) northwest of Pajure, that was being visited by local and foreign journalists, and where the UN World Food Programme (WFP), was preparing to distribute food to 33,000 people displaced by the 18-year-old conflict. Reports at the camp indicated that rebel fighters were still in the area and that two days earlier, three women had been abducted at a village only two kilometres away. The LRA has fought President Yoweri Museveni's government since 1988 to replace it with one based on the biblical Ten Commandments. But the group is best known for its brutality against the civilian population of the region, displacing 1.6 million of them and forcing them to live in squalid conditions in camps. In another development, relief agencies said that a cholera outbreak at the huge Pabbo Camp in Gulu district has intensified, with records showing three to four new cases of the disease reported every day. UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) spokesman Chulho Hyun said the outbreak was triggered by contamination of water sources and poor sanitary conditions at the camp, which houses about 67,000 people. "Aid workers are isolating patients and are urging residents to dig more pit latrines and use chlorinated water to contain the outbreak," Hyun said. At least 20 000 people were left homeless on Sunday after a rainstorm destroyed the roofs of about 4,000 huts at the camp, located about 400 kilometres (250 miles) north of the Ugandan capital, Kampala.

IRIN 29 Oct 2004 Sudan-Uganda: Some 2,000 Sudanese enter Uganda after fleeing hunger [This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations] GULU, 29 October (IRIN) - An estimated 2,000 people, mainly women and children, have entered Uganda during the past three months after fleeing hunger in southern Sudan, local officials in northern Uganda said on Friday. "We estimate that up to 2,000 of them have crossed over to Moyo district," Akumu Mavenjina, the Resident District Commissioner in charge of Moyo told IRIN by telephone from Moyo town. "Some started moving over following reports a few months ago suggesting that the [rebel] Lord's Resistance Army [LRA] was targeting them in villages and killing dozens of them, but of late there has been increased [people] and many are complaining of hunger." She said that many of the refugees who arrived recently reported leaving their homes because of drought-related food shortages. "There has been an increased number of arrivals in the past days and our staff are up there are registering them to see how they could be taken to refugee settlements in the region," said Dennis Duncan, spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Kampala. An estimated 185,000 refugees who fled civil war in southern Sudan live in refugee settlements in northern, northwestern and western Uganda.


Amnesty International 15 Oct 2004 AFR 46/029/2004 (Public) News Service No: 250 15 October 2004 Embargo Date: 15 October 2004 12:00 GMT Zimbabwe: Violations of the right to food Policies and practices of the Government of Zimbabwe are undermining peoples’ access to food, and violate Zimbabwe’s obligations under international human rights law a new report released by Amnesty International on the eve of World Food Day concluded. The report, "Zimbabwe: Power and Hunger, Violations of the Right to Food", examines a number of government policies and how their implementation has resulted in the violation of basic rights. These include the controversial "fast track land reform programme", and the operations of the government-controlled Grain Marketing Board (GMB). "Implementation of the 'fast track land reform programme' has been marred by violence, corruption and a blatant disregard for the rule of law. Hundreds have lost their lives; tens of thousands have lost their livelihoods and, with it, their ability to have access to adequate food," Amnesty International said. As a result of the way in which the land reform programme has been implemented agriculture has been disrupted, fertile land has gone unplanted and thousands of agricultural jobs have been lost. All this at a time when poverty and food insecurity meant millions of people in Zimbabwe were dependent on food aid. "Land reform can be vital to realizing human rights, including the right to food," Amnesty International’s report says. "However, any program of land reform should not result in violations of human rights." The report also criticizes the government’s response to the food crisis in Zimbabwe. The near-monopoly of the state-controlled Grain Marketing Board (GMB) on trade in and distribution of maize - the staple food for millions of people in Zimbabwe has been used by the government to control food supplies and to manipulate food for political purposes. "The GMB distribution system has been used to discriminate against supporters of the political opposition. In numerous cases only those who can prove membership of ZANU-PF have been allowed to access maize distributed by the GMB. During election campaigns voters’ access to food has been threatened unless they vote for ZANU-PF," says the report. "Farm workers have also been discriminated against by the GMB distribution system, reportedly in an attempt to force them to work for the newly resettled farms at low rates of pay." Discrimination has also been a problem in the international food aid programme. While donors have sought to prevent manipulation of international food aid by the government and its supporters, they have themselves been unwilling to provide food aid to newly resettled farms in need, reportedly because they believe this would legitimise the land reform process. "By allowing political motives to interfere with the provision of assistance to those in need, donors may also have undermined the efforts of those humanitarian actors who distribute assistance without discrimination, thus further denying the population of Zimbabwe badly needed help," Amnesty International said. There is mounting evidence that people in Zimbabwe continue to suffer from hunger. Although the government has claimed that the 2004 harvest was a "bumper crop", many independent monitors, including the UN and local and international non-governmental organizations involved in food security, dispute the government’s figures. However, the government has insisted it does not need international food aid and, since mid 2004, most food aid distribution in Zimbabwe has ceased. Amnesty International is concerned that the cessation of most international food aid distribution is leaving millions of people dependent on grain distributed via the GMB. It is unclear whether the GMB has sufficient resources to meet needs. The organization is further concerned about potential further violations of the rights to adequate food and freedom from hunger in the context of the 2005 elections, given the GMB’s history of discriminatory distribution of grain it controls and the pattern of abuse of access to food at times of elections over the past two years. "The government must allow independent monitoring of the food security situation in Zimbabwe and ensure transparency and accountability in the operations of the GMB," says the report. Amnesty International is calling on the Zimbabwe government, as a party to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICSECR), the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) and other international treaties under which it is obliged to uphold the right to food, to take immediate steps to fulfil its obligations without discrimination of any kind. The organization also calls on international donors to ensure that both development and humanitarian aid policies are based on human rights principles, including ensuring non-discrimination.

ICRC 18 Oct 2004 ICRC News 04/124 Zimbabwe: Decision-makers introduced to humanitarian law Diplomats, officers from the Zimbabwean army, air force, police and prison service, and other senior civil servants attended an ICRC presentation on international humanitarian law on 7 October. The presentation was part of a yearly five-day seminar organized by the University of Zimbabwe on various topics of interest to the country's decision-makers. This year's subject, “Management of peace missions”, was intended to prepare the several dozen participants for possible United Nations or African Union peace missions. The event afforded the ICRC an opportunity to present its work to protect people affected by armed conflict and to inform the authorities about implementation of international humanitarian law. The ICRC has a regional delegation in Harare that covers Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Zambia as well as Zimbabwe itself. Part of its mission is active promotion of this body of law in civil society, the military and the security forces.



AP 10 Oc 2004 Indian Specialist Shot Dead in Brazil By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Filed at 6:18 p.m. ET RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil (AP) -- A member of a government task force working to stop illegal diamond mining on Indian reservations in the Amazon was shot dead at an ATM, authorities said. An unknown teenager fired two shots at Apoena Meireles as he was leaving the cash machine in Cacoal, a town in the western Amazon close to the Roosevelt Indian reservation, on Saturday night, Federal Indian Bureau spokesman Carlos Tavares said. Meireles, a specialist on the Cinta Larga tribe and former head of the federal bureau, died on the way to the hospital. The gunman escaped. Meireles, 55, was in Cacoal as part of a task force created by President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva last month to quell the illegal extraction of diamonds from the violence-ridden reservation. Police are investigating whether the killing was a robbery or was connected to Meireles' work. In April, Indians from the Cinta Larga tribe killed 29 illegal diamond diggers inside their reservation. The massacre increased tensions between Indians and miners, and federal police since have stationed about 50 officers near the reservation. The April killings came after a four-year diamond rush by miners across Brazil on the reservation 2,100 miles northwest of Rio de Janeiro. Many believe the reservation holds South America's largest diamond lodes. The Cinta Larga Indians at first helped the miners, charging them fees, but then wanted to mine for themselves. Meireles was believed to be a vital link between the Cinta Larga and the government. He was the first non-Indian to make contact with the Cinta Larga in 1967, and he made the tribe known to the outside world. After the April massacre, the Cinta Larga allowed federal authorities to recover the bodies of 26 of the 29 slain miners only after lengthy negotiations by Meireles. As part of the government task force, Meireles recently said he wanted to persuade the Cinta Larga to stop mining themselves until the government had reworked legislation regulating mineral extraction on Indian lands.


NYT 4 Oct 2004 OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR Looking at Darfur, Seeing Rwanda By ROMÉO DALLAIRE Montreal — Each day the world is confronted by new reports of atrocities in the Darfur region of Sudan. President Bush, in his address to the United Nations General Assembly last month, referred to the situation as "genocide," and he and Secretary General Kofi Annan pledged support for sanctions against the Sudanese government and a Security Council resolution to expand the African Union force on the ground there. But I am afraid that moral condemnation, trade penalties and military efforts by African countries are simply not going to be enough to stop the killing - not nearly enough. I know, because I've seen it all happen before. A decade ago, I was the Canadian general in command of the United Nations forces in Rwanda when that civil war began and quickly turned into genocide. The conflict was often portrayed as nothing more than an age-old feud between African tribes, a situation that the Western world could do little to stop. All that was left to do was wait to pick up the pieces when the killing stopped and to provide support to rebuild the country. Although the early stages of the Darfur situation received more news coverage than the Rwanda genocide did, at some level the Western governments are still approaching it with the same lack of priority. In the end, it receives the same intuitive reaction: "What's in it for us? Is it in our 'national' interest?" Sudan, an underdeveloped, orphan nation, with no links to colonial masters of its past, is essentially being left to its own devices. The Islamic Janjaweed militias of Darfur, with the complicit approval of the government, are bent on ridding the region of its residents, primarily black Africans - killing, raping and driving refugees into camps along the border with Chad. The United Nations, emasculated by the self-interested maneuverings of the five permanent members of the Security Council, fails to intervene. Its only concrete step, the Security Council resolution passed in July, all but plagiarized the resolutions on Rwanda 10 years earlier. When I read phrases like "reaffirming its commitment to the sovereignty, unity, territorial integrity and independence of Sudan" and "expressing its determination to do everything possible to halt a humanitarian catastrophe, including by taking further action if required," I can't help but think of the stifling directives that were imposed on the United Nations' department of peacekeeping operations in 1994 and then passed down to me in the field. I recall all too well the West's indifference to the horrors that unfolded in Rwanda beginning in April 1994. Early warnings had gone unheeded, intervention was ruled out and even as the bodies piled up on the streets of Kigali and across the countryside, world leaders quibbled over the definition of what was really happening. The only international forces they sent during those first days and weeks of the massacres were paratroopers to evacuate the foreigners. Before long, we were burning the bodies with diesel fuel to ward off disease, and the smell that would cling to your skin like an oil. Several African countries promised me battalions of troops and hundreds of observers to help come to grips with the relentless carnage. But they had neither the equipment nor the logistical support to sustain themselves, and no way to fly in the vehicles and ammunition needed to conduct sustained operations. Today, to be sure, the international community is caught in the vicissitudes of complex political problems - particularly the fragile cease-fire between the Islamic government and the largely Christian population in southern Sudan. Powerful nations like the United States and Britain have lost much of their credibility because of the quagmire of Iraq. And infighting at the United Nations has bogged down an American proposed second resolution that probably wouldn't do much more than the one passed in July. So in the end we get nothing more than pledges to support the international monitoring team of a few hundred observers from the African Union (on Friday, Sudan agreed that this force could expand to 3,500 soldiers). Nigeria and other countries are willing to send a larger intervention force, but they can't do so effectively without the kind of logistical and transportation support Western countries could provide. Sudan is a huge country with a harsh terrain and a population unlikely to welcome outside intervention. Still, I believe that a mixture of mobile African Union troops supported by NATO soldiers equipped with helicopters, remotely piloted vehicles, night-vision devices and long-range special forces could protect Darfur's displaced people in their camps and remaining villages, and eliminate or incarcerate the Janjaweed. If NATO is unable to act adequately, manpower could perhaps come individually from the so-called middle nations - countries like Germany and Canada that have more political leeway and often more credibility in the developing world than the Security Council members. In April, on the 10th anniversary of the start of his country's genocide, President Paul Kagame told his people and the world that if any country ever suffered genocide, Rwanda would willingly come to its aid. He chastised the international community for its callous response to the killing spree of 1994, during which 800,000 people were slaughtered and three million lost their homes and villages. And sure enough, Rwanda sent a small contingent to Darfur. President Kagame kept his word. Having called what is happening in Darfur genocide and having vowed to stop it, it is time for the West to keep its word as well. Roméo Dallaire, a fellow at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at Harvard, is the author of "Shake Hands With the Devil: The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda.

Barrie Advance, Canada 31 Oct 2004 www.simcoe.com Children victims of New World Disorder: Dallaire Bruce Hain 10/31/04 00:00:00 Canada, and individual Canadians, must be committed to taking a global leadership role in advancing the cause of human rights in the years to come. That was the central message delivered to a packed Gryphon Theatre audience Friday morning by Lt.-Gen. (Ret.) Romeo Dallaire. Invested in the Order of Canada, Dallaire delivered a moving talk on his experiences as the Force Commander of the United Nations (UN) mission to Rwanda in the 1990s - a peacekeeping mission which ended in death for hundreds of thousands of Rwandans. Dallaire himself suffered psychologically following his departure from the African country. Despite his frantic urgings for more military support to minimize the inter-tribal genocide taking place, his requests were basically ignored by his superiors. As a result, he and his troops watched helplessly as thousands were slaughtered. The tragedy of Rwanda has been repeated in many other places, such as Yugoslavia, Somalia, Darfur, and Iraq, as civilian populations suffer the increasing consequences of military, tribal and political strife, Dallaire says, since the end of the Cold War. "We kept dictators well-oiled, and greased until 1989," he claims. The 'Old World Order' has dissolved violently into the 'New World Disorder,' one where ethnic cleansing, intra-state conflict, global terrorism and legal mercenaries are the results. A series of "imploding states (nations)" has led to "barbarism and genocide," Dallaire says. "The greatest victims of this new era have been children. We have children as young as nine becoming soldiers, refugees, and being sexually exploited." The aftermath of the destruction of the World Trade Center in 2001 has "created a panic" in western countries, resulting in policies where civil liberties are often being sacrificed on the altar of security, Dallaire says. He does see an important mediation role for Canada in the future. "Middle powers, like us, are not pulling our weight to prevent the intervention of major powers (in international matters)," he said. "We should have led a coalition of nations in Iraq. Never trust an intervention that is not sanctioned by the UN, because it is one of self-interest, not out of humanitarianism. "We need a renaissance of leadership - not just military and political," Dallaire recommends. "We need people with soft skills and who are able to negotiate. You have to get your boots dirty to advance human rights." Canadians shouldn't believe they are immune to terrorist attack. "We will face that front. You can bet on it. Canada must be aware we could self-destruct in the sense of status quo."


cbc.ca 16 Oct 2004 Pinochet has 'moderate dementia' Last Updated Sat, 16 Oct 2004 11:09:45 EDT SANTIAGO - A court-ordered medical examination has concluded that former Chilean President Augusto Pinochet is suffering from moderate dementia. He also has difficulty understanding the importance of the proceedings against him, according to the tests. Two weeks ago, a judge in Chile ordered Pinochet to undergo a barrage of medical and psychological tests to determine whether he is mentally fit to stand trial. Judge Juan Guzman is probing the former military leader's role in 19 deaths while Pinochet was in power. The results of those tests, conducted by three specialists, came back Friday, and lawyers are now arguing over what the results mean. The key diagnosis is that of the court-appointed neurologist Jorge Tapia. Tapia's evaluation mentions increased atrophy in Pinochet's brain, short-term memory loss, and moderate dementia, including trouble recognizing his close family members. That's the same diagnosis that helped Pinochet escape prosecution on human rights charges in 2001. Pinochet's lawyer Pablo Rodriguez said the results reaffirm that his client is unfit to stand trial, and that the legal proceedings against him aim to "denigrate and humiliate Gen. Pinochet in the eyes of the public." Prosecutor Eduardo Contreras said the exams show the opposite. He said they clearly reveal Pinochet is fit to stand trial, because the exams prove he isn't mentally incompetent. The medical report did not comment on whether he was mentally fit to defend himself. Judge Guzman has given the lawyers five days to analyse the results. But the judge will have the final call on whether to try the former dictator.


www.stuff.co.nz 1 Oct 2004 Venezuela, Colombia get failing grade in Nazi hunt BOGOTA: With time running out, Nazi hunters are making a new push to track down aging war criminals still living in South America, a region notorious for opening its doors to those responsible for the Holocaust. Almost 60 years after Germany's surrender in World War II, the Jerusalem-based Simon Wiesenthal Centre is pressing Colombia and Venezuela to help investigate 29 suspects who entered after the war. The centre is focusing on those Andean neighbours because it says both countries have ignored its requests for information. For more than three years the centre's chief Nazi hunter Efraim Zuroff said he has asked them to help determine which suspects are still alive. While the centre believes there may be dozens more suspects across Latin America, other countries such as Argentina have been more cooperative than Venezuela and Colombia. "This kind of investigation can only be done with the cooperation of government because it depends on immigration files and other official records," he said in a telephone interview. Colombia and Venezuela got a failing grade in the center's latest annual report issued this month for "refusing in principle to investigate, let alone prosecute, suspected Nazi war criminals despite clear-cut evidence that such individuals were living within their borders." LIVING LARGE IN CARACAS One suspect is millionaire Harry Mannil, an 84-year-old Caracas-based auto sales magnate, member of Venezuelan high society and major collector of pre-Columbian art. Zuroff accuses him of crimes while serving in the Estonian Political Police during the Nazi occupation of Estonia. The force was "involved in the arrest and murder of at least many dozens of civilians, Jews and communists," Zuroff said. Since the accusations became public several years ago Mannil has written at least one newspaper editorial, in Venezuela's El Nacional in May 2001, denying them. In May 2004 he told Exceso magazine he was only a junior office employee for the secret police and never a Nazi collaborator. He has been cleared of the accusations by the Estonian government but remains on a US watch list that bars him from entering the United States. His secretary said he was on holiday and unavailable for comment. Venezuela officials did not respond to requests for information from Reuters. Meanwhile, Colombia may still be home to 11 suspects, Lithuanians believed to have entered the country as refugees between 1947 and 1952. Two of them, Stepas Kuprys and Zenonas Garsva, served in the 12th Lithuanian Auxiliary Police Battalion, involved in the mass murder of Jews in Lithuania and Belarus, Zuroff said. Lithuania has initiated legal proceedings against both, who would be in their 90s. The Wiesenthal centre is trying to determine if they are still alive and in Colombia. Colombia is investigating, said a spokesman for the country's detective force, known by it Spanish initials DAS. But the inquiry is secret. "We are not permitted to discuss this information with outside organizations," the spokesman said. Colombia is in a 40-year guerrilla war that has left huge areas of the country in the hands of Marxist rebels or hard-right paramilitaries, both of which fund their operations with money from the country's cocaine trade. "Everyone understands that Colombia has problems that are more pressing. We are not asking the government to devote an extraordinary amount of resources," Zuroff said. "We simply want them to tell us how many of these people are still living in Colombia so we can try and make some progress while the suspects are still alive and justice can still be achieved," he added. "Even governments that are busy need to take a stand." HARBORING FUGITIVES Odessa, the organization that helped Nazis to escape Europe, channeled many wanted Nazis to Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Paraguay. Argentina harbored fugitives like Adolf Eichmann, the bureaucrat in charge of implementing the final solution to Europe's "Jewish problem". Israel kidnapped Eichman from Argentina in 1960, tried him and hanged him in 1962. Zuroff said Eichmann was identified after one of his sons, living under his real name, went on a date with an Argentine girl who told her father, who was Jewish, about her new beau. The father notified a judge in Germany who relayed the information to Israel. Argentina objected to the capture of Eichmann, but has since been more cooperative. It extradited former concentration camp commander Dinko Sakic to Croatia in 1998 and sent former SS captain Erich Priebke to Italy in 1995 for the massacre of 335 men and boys in the Ardeatine Caves near Rome. "None of these countries ever made any serious effort to find these people on their own," Zuroff said. "I estimate there are still at least several dozen or more in Argentina and other countries."

BBC 4 Oct 2004 Ten killed in Colombia massacre At least 10 people - including a toddler and a pregnant woman - have been killed by gunmen at a farm in south-western Colombia. Officials said four others were hurt in Sunday's attack in the town of Candelaria, some 190 miles (300km) south-west of the capital, Bogota. Police said the killings were probably linked to drugs traffickers. The town's mayor said the victims were apparently related and that the farm had been recently bought. "It is a dreadful crime," mayor Oscar Lopez told reporters, adding that the attack left the local community shaken. The mayor said an investigation had been launched. The gunmen reportedly used rifles and a grenade launcher in the attack. Colombia is the world's biggest cocaine producer and a major supplier of heroin to the US.

AP 4 Oct 2004 Fourteen killed in Colombia massacre BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) – Heavily armed attackers opened fire on a group of people in a farmhouse in southwest Colombia, killing 14 of them – including a toddler and a pregnant woman – and wounding five others, authorities said Monday. No motive was immediately apparent for the massacre near the village of Candelaria, 300 kilometers (190 miles) southwest of Bogota, the capital. The assailants reportedly used rifles and even a grenade launcher in the attack, which occurred late Sunday. A police patrol that was nearby engaged in a firefight with the attackers and killed one of them. That person was not immediately identified. Oscar Lopez, mayor of Candelaria, said the massacre victims apparently were related and that the family had recently bought the hacienda where the massacre occurred. A 3-year-old boy was among those killed. The unborn baby was not counted among the 14 dead. The slain mother was four months pregnant. "This is a horrifying crime which has us deeply disturbed,'' Lopez told local radio. Colombia is embroiled in a long-term war, fueled by drug trafficking, that pits two Marxist rebel groups against outlawed paramilitary groups and government forces. The rival outlawed groups have committed massacres in the 40-year-old conflict, although the number of such killings has dropped in recent years.

NYT 9 Oct 2004 Rightist Militias in Colombia Offer to Disarm 3,000 of Their Fighters By JUAN FORERO BOGOTÁ, Colombia, Oct. 8 - A proposal by a coalition of rightist paramilitary groups to disarm 3,000 fighters was presented Friday to President Álvaro Uribe, a gesture that may reinvigorate deteriorating peace talks and lead to the largest one-time demobilization of insurgents in Colombia's 40-year conflict. The 15,000-member United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia, a coalition of outlaw antirebel forces responsible for drug trafficking and mass killings, described its offer as a "great act of faith." The announcement, made Thursday, came days after the magazine Semana released transcripts of disarmament talks that showed them near collapse. Diplomats and experts on Colombia's conflict reacted cautiously to the development. They say there is no legal framework for the demobilization of top commanders or a plan to reincorporate 3,000 former fighters into Colombian society by the end of the year, as proposed. "The government cannot just tell them to demobilize without telling them what they're demobilizing into," said Sergio Jaramillo, director of Ideas for Peace, a policy analysis group in Bogotá. "It is imperative that a law be passed, quickly, so people know what the terms of reference are." The talks, which officially began July 1, have in recent weeks exposed the extent to which several paramilitary units control northern Colombia, including lucrative cocaine-trafficking routes and businesses where drug profits are laundered. Through its infiltration of Colombian institutions, including the security forces, regional governments and even Congress, the group has a level of power that even Colombia's most notorious drug trafficker, the late Pablo Escobar, never had. "They're the most effective cartel in Colombian history," said one high-ranking Western diplomat. For Mr. Uribe, a disarmament deal with the paramilitary forces is central to maintaining his high popularity and winning support for legislation that would let him run for reelection in 2006. The paramilitary forces, though, have shown little willingness to give in to demands that they pay in jail time and reparations for war crimes while handing over huge tracts of land obtained through drug money or illegal seizures. Instead, the groups have extended their presence in more than a third of Colombia's 1,100 municipalities, with nearly 30 mayors and 400 town council members openly expressing sympathy. Though paramilitary commanders claim to have called a unilateral cease-fire, the government's human rights ombudsman has identified 342 violations in 23 months, including assassinations of union leaders and mass killings of Indians. "There have been so many blows to the talks lately," said Adam Isacson, a senior analyst at the Washington-based Center for International Policy who closely tracks Colombia's war. "They had to do something to show that these talks are viable, but this disarmament is just a pledge and a promise." The Semana tapes showed paramilitary leaders in a state of near panic over the possibility of being extradited to the United States on drug charges. But in the tapes, Luis Carlos Restrepo, the government's peace negotiator, is heard assuring commanders that the government would try shielding them from extradition, and from facing war crimes trials in the International Criminal Court. Mr. Restrepo also plays down reports of killings inside a 142-square-mile safe haven in northern Colombia that the government ceded to the paramilitary groups - sharply contrasting with how Colombia's government reacts to reports of killings in rebel-held territories.


RightsAction.org 18 Oct 2004 MEDIA RELEASE: GUATEMALA: JUSTICE ??? FOR VICTIMS OF THE RÍO NEGRO MASSACRES Since 1995, ADIVIMA has been a major community development and human rights partner group of Rights Action. We are proud to send out this information about their on-going work to build the rule of law in a country long dominated by power abuse and impunity, even as repression is a constant possibility and reality. PRONOUNCEMENT of ADIVIMA (adivima@yahoo.com) - Association for the Integral Development of Victims of Violence in the Verapaces, Maya Achí: [Translated in solidarity with Rights Action by Rosalind M. Gill, School of Translation, York University] During the conflict, the village of Río Negro, in the Municipality of Rabinal, department of Baja Verapaz, suffered 5 massacres, which were carried out by the Army and Civil Defense Patrols from Xococ, under the governments of Lucas García and Efraín Ríos Montt. The largest massacres were carried out on February 13, 1982, in which 73 (mainly) men lost their lives, and on March 13, 1982, in which 107 children and 70 women died and the village was destroyed, the remaining children orphaned and the surviving women widowed. Subsequently, surviving children were forced into slavery; others took refuge in the mountains to save their lives, living in misery, persecution, inhuman conditions, exposed to the rain and the sun, suffering from hunger and thirst, and faced with the injustice of being expelled from their own land for the sole reason that they are poor and indigenous. These people were brutally massacred so that the Chixoy Hydroelectric Dam project (funded by the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank) could begin operations. These events deserve justice and an explanation from the material and intellectual authors of these massacres, as well as from the state of Guatemala; and this can only happen if the silence is broken, impunity is no longer tolerated and demands are made that the laws of the country and the international treaties and conventions ratified by Guatemala be respected. In this way, we will achieve justice, forgiveness, Reconciliation and peace. After a ten-year struggle for justice, the Sentencing Tribunal of Baja Verapaz has declared 9AM, October 19, 2004, as the official time for the Public Trial on the issue of the third massacre in Río Negro, or the events which occurred on March 13, 1982. We therefore call upon Human Rights Organizations, the National and International Press, brothers and sisters and victims of the internal conflict to accompany us, to ensure that there is transparency in the proceedings of the Public Trial, to obtain justice and sentencing of those who carried out the Río Negro massacre and to speak out against impunity. Yours Sincerely, ADIVIMa

BBC 20 Oct 2004 Guatemalan massacre trial starts Six former paramilitaries have gone on trial in Guatemala over the massacre of 143 people in one of the worst incidents in the country's civil war. Three other fighters have already been convicted over the 1982 attack on Mayan Indians - mostly women and children - in the village of Rio Negro. It is thought the murders may have been punishment for the villagers' refusal to allow a dam to be built nearby. A defence lawyer said his clients were innocent. More than 200,000 people disappeared or were killed during the 36-year civil war, which ended in 1996. Human rights activists say the former paramilitaries were behind some of the country's worst war crimes, including massacres, rapes and tortures. Smashed against rocks Guatemala's Truth Commission has described the killings in Rio Negro as genocide. According to its report, the perpetrators raped women and smashed childrens' heads on rocks. Afterwards, local people are said to have fled to the hills, where many more died of hunger or illness. As the trial started, prosecutors said they could prove the fighters were the people who actually carried out the killings. The defence said the fighters were not in Rio Negro at the time. "The brothers and sisters who died were not animals. What we want is justice to be brought to those responsible," a witness told Reuters news agency.


washingtonpost.com 12 Oct 2004 Violence in Haiti Claims at Least 46 Lives By AMY BRACKEN The Associated Press Tuesday, October 12, 2004; 11:36 PM PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti - Violence in Haiti's capital has claimed at least 46 lives, with hospital records showing Tuesday that 17 victims were killed this week. The United States accused supporters of an ousted president of trying to destabilize the interim government. Port-au-Prince has been beset by gunbattles and beheadings since a Sept. 30 demonstration marking the 1991 coup that first overthrew President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. In February, the former priest fled the country again after a three-week revolt led by a street gang and former soldiers. Tensions still are simmering with Aristide supporters demanding his return and an end to the "invasion" by foreign troops. U.S. Marines arrived in Haiti the day Aristide left and were replaced by U.N. peacekeepers sent in June to stabilize the country. Rebels who want the interim government to formally reinstate the army that Aristide disbanded have accused the peacekeepers of doing little to halt the violence and say that they are ready to end it. On Monday, as mourners gathered for the funeral of five assassinated police officers, gunfire crackled around the capital and businesses shut their doors again. Records at Port-au-Prince hospital seen by The Associated Press showed 17 people with gunshot wounds died Sunday and Monday, eight of them in the Cite Soleil seaside slum that is filled with Aristide supporters and street gangs, and three in Martissant, a western neighborhood that has been a flashpoint in the recent unrest. That raised the toll to at least 46 killed since Sept. 30. One man was reportedly shot and killed near the presidential palace. "There was shooting everywhere," said Lovely Pierre-Louis, 19. "I saw a man walking across that street with a boy, then the shooting came again, and he was on the ground with his head bleeding, and the boy was running." Messile Sylviani, a 30-year-old beautician, said her salon closed an hour after opening Monday, and she returned home, a block from where the man had been shot. "Now I'm so scared," she said. "We're all stressed out because we know shooting could start again any time." On Sept. 30, police reportedly shot and killed two people at a demonstration. The headless bodies of three police officers turned up the same day, and government officials blamed Aristide militants and a new campaign called "Operation Baghdad." The United States on Tuesday accused Aristide supporters of "a systematic campaign to destabilize the interim government and disrupt the efforts of the international community." "Over the past two weeks, pro-Aristide thugs have murdered policemen, looted businesses and public installations, and terrorized civilians," said State Department spokesman Richard Boucher. His statement urged leaders of Aristide's Lavalas Family to "break with the party's legacy of violence and criminality." It said the interim government represented the best hope for Haiti and expressed confidence that U.N. peacekeepers' capacity to protect Haitians would increase within days and weeks. Aristide supporters say the police started the violence, which has plagued businesses and complicated efforts to help flood survivors in the northwestern city of Gonaives. Tropical Storm Jeanne left 200,000 homeless people there who are living on rooftops and in the street. CARE, an international humanitarian organization, suspended emergency food distributions for two days in Gonaives, which is supplied by ship and by road from Port-au-Prince. "We have enough food in Gonaives to meet needs for only four or five days," said Abby Maxman, Haiti's CARE director. "We're already cutting back deliveries to conserve the supply, and we might have to consider suspending them if the security situation doesn't improve." Unrest in the capital also blocked access to the seaport for several days last week, cutting off the major route for U.N. World Food Program shipments. U.N. forces are providing 24-hour security at CARE's warehouse in Gonaives, where street gangs and ordinary civilians have looted aid shipments, as well as escorting large convoys of WFP and CARE trucks, Maxman said. But he said the United Nations has reduced troop levels there to address rising violence in the capital. Aristide, now living in South Africa, claims the United States kidnapped him and that he still is Haiti's elected leader. The United States denies his charges. At an empty street market in Port-au-Prince, Marie Joseph blamed the United States for the violence. "They drove out the (Aristide) Lavalas government, and nothing has changed," said Joseph, 36, who hoped to sell a bowl of cherries. "President Bush said he'd provide security, but he's getting soldiers killed in Iraq and now he's letting people get decapitated in our country," she said.

Reuters 29 Oct 2004 170 killed in recent Haiti violence, group says By Joseph Guyler Delva PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Oct 29 (Reuters) - At least 170 people have been killed by gunfire in recent violence in Haiti, most of them from slum strongholds of supporters of ousted president Jean-Bertrand Aristide, a human rights group said on Friday. Another 241 people have been wounded by gunshots in violence from Sept. 1 to Oct. 26, the local branch of the New York-based National Coalition for Haitian Rights said, citing records from the Port-au-Prince general hospital. Several others have been killed over the past 48 hours, including four people allegedly executed on Thursday near the slum of Bel-Air. Haitian authorities have launched an offensive aimed at ending a wave of pro- and anti-Aristide violence in recent weeks. Aristide was pushed into exile in February by a bloody rebellion and U.S. pressure. A spokesman for the NCHR, Viles Alizar, said many of the victims died in police raids on pro-Aristide slums such as Bel-Air and Cite Soleil to hunt criminal gang members. "The police have to act with professionalism when intervening to avoid deaths of innocent people as it has been the case so far," Alizar said. The group called on the government to create an independent commission to investigate the killings of 13 people in the Fort National slum on Tuesday. Witnesses accused police of carrying out the killings. Police officials denied the accusations. Aristide, Haiti's first democratically elected president, was overthrown in a military coup during his first term in 1991 and disbanded the military when he was restored to office three years later. He began a second term in 2001 and was forced into exile in February. Haiti's police force includes many former soldiers who took part in the rebellion, and Aristide supporters have accused them of killing and illegally arresting Aristide partisans.


AP 3 Oct 2004 Mexico Massacre Anniversary Observed - Thousands of Students, Union Leaders, Activists Commemorate Mexico Tlatelolco Plaza Massacre The Associated Press MEXICO CITY Oct. 3, 2004 — Thousands of students, union leaders and radical activists flooded the streets of Mexico's capital Saturday to commemorate the anniversary of the Oct. 2, 1968, massacres of protesters in Tlatelolco plaza. Unlike in years past, the demonstrations were largely peaceful. Protesters gathered in Tlatelolco, then marched 1.5 miles to the main square of Mexico City's historic downtown district. About 60 anarchists clashed with police before the main march began, but no arrests or serious injuries were reported. Protesters carried banners and waved signs demanding President Vicente Fox bring to justice those responsible for the massacre, in which snipers and army troops fired on a pro-democracy student demonstration that came 10 days before Mexico City began hosting the Olympics. Most businesses along the route closed and lowered protective metal shutters before the march began, and those that remained open used bulky metal slabs to reinforce storefront windows. More than 3,500 police officers took to the streets along the march route to keep order. At least six people were arrested, many for carrying open containers of alcohol, authorities said. While the government has never released firm figures on those killed at Tlatelolco, estimates range from 38 to several hundred people.

United States

NYT 1 Oct 2004 [Excerpts] Transcript of the Candidates' First Debate in the Presidential Campaign Following is a transcript of the presidential debate last night in Coral Gables, Fla., between President Bush and Senator John Kerry, as recorded by The New York Times. The moderator was Jim Lehrer of the Public Broadcasting Service. . . . Mr. Kerry Thirty-five to 40 countries in the world had a greater capability of making weapons at the moment the president invaded than Saddam Hussein. And while he's been diverted with 9 out of 10 active duty divisions of our army, either going to Iraq, coming back from Iraq or getting ready to go, North Korea has gotten nuclear weapons and the world is more dangerous. Iran is moving towards nuclear weapons. And the world is more dangerous. Darfur has a genocide. The world is more dangerous. I'd have made a better choice. . . Mr. Lehrer New question, two minutes. Senator Kerry, you mention Darfur, the Darfur region of Sudan, 50,000 people have already died in that area, more than a million are homeless. It has been labeled an act of ongoing genocide, yet neither one of you or anyone else connected with your campaigns or your administration that I can find has discussed the possibility of sending in troops. Why not? Mr. Kerry Well, I'll tell you exactly why not, but I first want to say something about those sanctions on Iran. Only the United States put the sanctions on alone. And that's exactly what I'm talking about. In order for the sanctions to be effective, we should have been working with the British, French and Germans and other countries. And that's the difference between the president and me. And there, again, he sort of slid by the question. Now, with respect with Darfur, yes, it is a genocide. And months ago, many of us were pressing for action. I think the reason that we're not saying send American troops in at this point is several fold. No. 1, we can do this through the African Union, providing we give them the logistical support. Right now all the president is providing is humanitarian support. We need to do more than that. They've got to have the logistical capacity to go in and stop the killing. And that's going to require more than is on the table today. I also believe that it is - one of the reasons we can't do it is we're overextended. Ask the people in the armed forces today. We've got guards in reserves who are doing double duties. We've got a backdoor draft taking place in America today. People with stop-loss programs where they're told you can't get out of the military. Nine out of our 10 active duty divisions committed to Iraq one way or the other, either going, coming or preparing. So this is the way the president has overextended the United States. That's why, in my plan, I add two active-duty divisions to the United States Army, not for Iraq but for our general demands across the globe. I also intend to double the number of special forces so that we can do the job we need to do with respect to fighting the terrorists around the world. And if we do that, then we have the ability to be able to respond more rapidly. But I'll tell you this, as president, if it took American forces to some degree to coalesce the African Union, I'd be prepared to do it because we could never allow another Rwanda. It's a moral responsibility for us in the world. Mr. Lehrer Ninety seconds. Mr. Bush Back to Iran just for a second. It was not my administration that put the sanctions on Iran. That happened long before I arrived in Washington, D.C. In terms of Darfur, I agree it's genocide. And Colin Powell so stated. We've committed $200 million worth of aid. We're the leading donor in the world to help the suffering people there. We will commit more over time to help. We were very much involved at the U.N. on the sanction policy of the Bashir government in the Sudan. Prior to Darfur Ambassador Jack Danforth had been negotiating a north south agreement that we would hope would have brought peace to the Sudan. I agree with my opponent that we shouldn't be committing troops. That we ought to be working with the African Union to do so. Precisely what we did in Liberia. We helped stabilize the situation with some troops. And when the African Union came we moved them out. My hope is that the African Union moves rapidly to help save lives. Fortunately, the rainy season will be ending shortly which will make it easier to get aid there and help the long-suffering people there.

Boston Globe 5 Oct 2004 INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT Kerry opposes role in tribunal US concerns not yet met, he says By Joe Lauria, Globe Correspondent | October 5, 2004 UNITED NATIONS--Senator John F. Kerry has said he opposes US involvement in an international court for war crimes until certain conditions are met, apparently contradicting President Bush's assertion during last week's presidential debate that Kerry favors joining the court. "My number one priority is to protect the servicemen and women who protect America from harm," Kerry told the Boston Globe in reply to a request to state his position. "Therefore, I don't believe the United States should join the International Criminal Court until our concerns are addressed and the Court develops a solid track record of fair prosecutions of the world's worst criminals." However, Kerry added in the written statement that "I will not continue the obsessive and self-defeating campaign President Bush has waged against the ICC and the close American allies that support it. . . . All he's done is to alienate our closest allies and diminish his own authority in the world." Bush raised the issue of the court during the candidates' first debate on Thursday, saying he would never take part, while "my opponent is for joining the International Criminal Court." Kerry did not respond, and the issue was not raised again during the debate. The international court was created in The Hague, Netherlands, in July 2002 to hear charges of war crimes, genocide, and crimes against humanity. Bush cited Kerry's alleged support for the ICC again yesterday in Clive, Iowa, saying: "I think it would be bad for our troops to have to be, you know, facing an unaccountable prosecutor in a foreign land for decisions that the commander in chief made. Listen, if somebody does something wrong in our country, we've got plenty of justice, and we don't need to be signing up for a federal--international court. My opponent would join the International Criminal Court." Kerry's statement on the court, e-mailed to a Globe reporter Saturday night, came after repeated inquiries over the past six weeks and two days after another request the morning of the debate. Mark Kitchens, a foreign affairs spokesman for the Kerry campaign, said in an e-mail to the Globe about Kerry's ICC position: "George W. Bush once again chose to mislead the American people about John Kerry's position." The Bush campaign yesterday referred reporters to Kerry's past statements on the ICC, some of which could be read as supporting participation, but which increasingly emphasized the need for safeguards for US citizens. Kerry replied in early 2004 to a group called Peace Action: "I support US participation in the International Criminal Court, but also believe that US officials, including soldiers, should be provided some protection from political motivated prosecutions." In a September statement to the American Bar Association, however, Kerry did not say whether he supported or opposed participation. He said Bush had alienated allies with his handling of the ICC, and that "[m]y administration will carefully consider the full range of US interests at stake with respect to the court as we review our policy and fashion a more constructive approach." The issue is a delicate one for the Democratic nominee, who has faced criticism from Bush supporters for his multilateralist positions. ICC supporters said Kerry apparently wants to avoid alienating undecided voters who may be suspicious of international organizations having jurisdiction over US citizens. "It's disappointing that he is unwilling to endorse it, but given that the popular concern about the court is based less on reality and more on the right-wing misinterpretation, maybe it's politically the safest position to take," said Stephen Zunes, a professor at the University of San Francisco. William Pace, of the Coalition for the International Criminal Court, said Kerry's position departs from the Bush administration. "Just taking what is a war against the ICC and reducing it to a wait-and-see is already an enormous step . . . forward," he said. President Bill Clinton signed the treaty, but Bush revoked that approval in May 2002. Bush made it clear during the debate that his administration would never back the court. "I wouldn't join the International Criminal Court. It's a body based in The Hague where unaccountable judges and prosecutors can pull our troops or diplomats up for trial," he said. In his statement to the Globe, Kerry criticized Bush's attempts to pressure countries, many of which have ratified the treaty, into bilateral arrangements that would prevent them from turning over US citizens to the court. The administration has so far signed such pacts with 94 nations. Kerry also said he would ensure that "status of forces agreements" granting immunity from prosecution for US troops deployed abroad would be upheld. Rick Klein and Patrick Healy of the Globe staff contributed to this report.

www.tompaine.com 8 Oct 004 A Commitment To 'Never Again' William Ferroggiaro October 08, 2004 Last Thursday was a red-letter day not just because of John Kerry's stellar performance in the debate, but because he used that forum to commit publicly to send U.S. forces to Sudan, if necessary. There are other steps the United States can take to institutionalize genocide prevention, and humanitarian expert William Ferroggiaro outlines five of them. But in the end, he says, preventing genocide all comes down to political action, and having a leader willing to take it. William Ferroggiaro has lectured on humanitarian intervention at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the U.S. Department of State’s Foreign Service Institute. He was a consultant to the Frontline documentary “Ghosts of Rwanda” and has produced three reports on the United States and the 1994 Rwandan genocide for the National Security Archive. History was made at the first presidential debate of 2004: For the first time ever, a presidential candidate publicly committed to using U.S. troops to prevent genocide. Calling it our “moral responsibility,” Democratic candidate John Kerry said “if it took American forces” to assist the African Union in Sudan, “I'd be prepared to do it because we could never allow another Rwanda.” By contrast, while finally concluding the killing in Darfur is “genocide,” President Bush and his administration have now handed the problem off to the United Nations—as the Clinton administration did on Rwanda 10 years ago. Unfortunately, except for a few minor bureaucratic initiatives over the years, our government may be in no better position to act on Sudan than it was on Rwanda. How do go from rhetoric to action? Here are five ways to institutionalize genocide prevention at the highest levels of government. Reform Strategies and Institutions First, we need to institutionalize our commitment by incorporating it into the foremost policy statements that direct and guide government, ensuring that policymakers are oriented towards the threat that genocide represents and instill a culture of prevention rather than hand-wringing. Specifically, we need to make explicit in the National Security Strategy of the United States, the Congressionally-mandated statement of the Administration’s world-view, that genocide is a threat to the values and interests of the United States and that preventing genocide—wherever it occurs—is a priority goal and interest of the United States. This would be more than just a declaration—planning, budgets, implementation and management follow directly from such guidance. Bureaucracies need direction from senior leadership as to what is a priority—otherwise they founder along, as we did in taking months to deliver armored personnel carriers for UN forces in Rwanda. Second, we need to revise the National Military Strategy of the United States to reflect this new political commitment. Through the National Military Strategy, an administration articulates its rationale for the structure and use of U.S. forces in defending and asserting U.S. interests. By explicitly addressing genocide prevention in this strategy, defense agencies and the military can develop planning and contingency documents and assess force requirements; Congress will then have a sound basis for funding such extraordinary operations. This will ensure that we are never caught overextended on our commitments and unable or unwilling to contribute to genocide prevention. Third, the president should issue a presidential directive on genocide prevention that designates the national security advisor as the responsible official for genocide prevention. Locating responsibility within the White House will ensure the president’s commitment. The president should also order all executive departments and agencies to establish or designate offices—within the office of the secretary or head of the agency—to coordinate a response to genocide both within the agency and with the National Security Council on the government-wide response. Fourth, the president should issue a directive to the secretary of defense to identify and establish the necessary military elements—e.g., airlift, communications, intelligence, logistics, planning, and conventional and unconventional forces—within the military commands to comprise a ‘quick response force’ to prevent genocide. This force or elements of it should be oriented for multilateral action, but if urgency requires, it should be able to stand alone. What is most important is that it is ready, that it is properly equipped and trained, and that its concept and mission is clear. In doing so, we ensure that the military is a full participant in the policy of genocide prevention, not an afterthought as it was on Rwanda. Finally, the president should order the director of central intelligence—or that office’s successor, as is currently being debated in Congress—to publicize a ‘Genocide Watch List’ similar to the secret ‘conflict watch list’ produced by the National Intelligence Council. Among other benefits, this list would alert the American public to potential crises where genocide might occur, ensuring public awareness and a meaningful debate—between public, elected representatives, and the administration—as to a proper response. Only then will we ensure that public support is deep enough to allow policymakers to consider all available options, troops included. The Role of Leadership and Politics Whether or not it involves U.S. forces, any decision to respond to genocide will be a political one—as is a decision to stand by. Such decisions represent a fundamental test of leadership. Having observed the Clinton administration’s early failures on the Balkans and Rwanda, the Bush administration had a unique opportunity to address genocide, but declined to do so. Despite advocacy by Secretary of State Colin Powell and other senior officials, this administration will not act decisively on Sudan because it is not oriented towards genocide prevention. Kerry’s commitment at the presidential debate last week follows his declaration in July—months before the Administration—that “genocide” was underway in Sudan. Two weeks after that July statement, Congress followed Kerry’s lead with a resolution condemning “genocide” in Sudan. Bush’s abdication and Kerry’s commitment highlight the central role of leadership in the prevention of genocide; all planning and resources aside, the difference between action and inaction is political leadership. We need to change our strategies and institutions so that we are prepared to act on the words ‘Never again’. But we need to elect leaders with the courage of their convictions to lead us there.

washingtonpost.com 9 Oct 2004 Finding Purpose and Delivering Relief Ex-NBA Star Enlists AU In Africa Medical Project By Amy Argetsinger Washington Post Staff Writer Saturday, October 9, 2004; Page B01 Kermit Washington had gone back to American University on many occasions over the years -- the night they retired his basketball jersey, the times he needed a gym to run his clinics for aspiring players. During the highs and lows of an NBA career overshadowed by bitter controversy, his alma mater was one of the few places, he said, where he was always welcomed, always made to feel at home. He wasn't just any AU alumnus, of course. As a longtime forward for the Los Angeles Lakers, Portland Trail Blazers and other teams, Washington was the most celebrated athlete to emerge from a private college better known for producing diplomats and policy wonks. But when he returned to the Northwest Washington campus last year, it was on a mission far more personal and one that had nothing to do with sports. In the office of the dean of the School of International Service, Washington described the free clinic he had started in a bleak Nairobi slum -- the focus of much of his energies since leaving pro basketball 15 years earlier. Now he wanted American to send students to Kenya to help. The dean said yes, and in January, AU will launch a study-abroad program that will enable students to intern with Washington's Project Contact Africa while taking classes for credit at Nairobi universities. At least half a dozen have signed on for spring semester, and Washington hopes to draw more in coming years from American and other colleges. "We're going to help 100,000 people this year," said the 1973 AU graduate, now 53. "They are going to see that people being oppressed by disease and hunger can be helped." If it weren't for his 6-foot-8-inch height, a passerby might not peg Kermit Washington as a former pro athlete. The new Arlington resident -- he relocated from Vancouver to be closer to the District, his home town -- arrived at American's campus on a recent morning in a plain blue button-down shirt and gray dress pants, a vaguely self-effacing hunch in his walk. He politely steered the conversation away from himself, returning again and again to his African mission. "If a pharmacy gave us 100,000 pills for intestinal worms, we could give those out in a month. If we had enough ringworm medicine and scabies medicine, we could help a million kids," he said, describing in detail the fast-acting properties of anti-parasitical drugs. "Two days later, every single bug is gone!" It's hard to believe this was once the most vilified man in sports. On Dec. 9, 1977, when the Coolidge High School graduate was playing for the Lakers, Washington became embroiled in a mid-game scuffle with a member of the Houston Rockets. When another Rockets player, Rudy Tomjanovich, ran toward him to break up the fight, Washington reacted instinctively to the blur he saw as a threat and let loose a punch -- freakish in the intensity of its impact -- that nearly proved fatal, doctors said. Tomjanovich, now coach of the Lakers, underwent emergency surgery to repair broken bones in his face and skull. He and Washington have long since reconciled. But the punch cast a shadow over the rest of Washington's career and branded him a brute. It ended the dreams he once had of becoming a senator or congressman. And it closed doors to him in the coaching profession as well. His venture into the restaurant business in Vancouver, Wash., with another former Trail Blazer ended a few years ago, a costly failure. Today, he earns a living by running pre-draft camps to train National Basketball Association hopefuls. But much of his time and attention goes to Project Contact, the medical relief organization he formed in 1995 after an eye-opening trip to Africa. Washington had spent years doing charitable work in his adopted home of Portland. With the support of Nike, he delivered athletic shoes to youngsters who made the honor roll. Over time, though, he grew disenchanted: Students would complain about the color of the free basketball shoes or pester him for a different style. He winced when remembering one delivery he made to a poor neighborhood; some of the recipients, after snagging one pair of sneakers, immediately got back in line to collect more. "The greed and deceitfulness," he said, sighing. "I was so hurt. . . . I thought, let me help people who will appreciate it." In 1994, after reading accounts of the genocide in Rwanda, he called a Portland-based medical humanitarian team that was traveling to the refugee camps. He offered to donate money. Instead, they invited him along. Washington was staggered by the conditions of the camp he visited in Goma, Zaire. "Three thousand people -- no food, no water, no bathroom, no nothing," he said. He befriended a little boy named Moses who had been saved from a mass grave. He sat by the bedside of a girl with pneumonia who asked for his lip balm. When he returned the next day, she had died. Their faces, and many others, lingered with him when he returned to the United States. "They look at you with eyes of hopelessness, and I can't blame them," he said. "If I lived there, I'd be thinking, 'How can I get out?' " Washington decided to recast the 6th Man Foundation he had created to address local issues in Oregon to give it a more global focus. In 1995, Project Contact began taking doctors and nurses to Nairobi's Kibera neighborhood -- one of the largest slums in the world and a destination for refugees from across eastern Africa -- to operate regular clinics. He initially funded the effort out of his own pocket, including selling off his Porsche. Then he drew donations from the NBA Players Association and corporations such as Nike. Mostly, though, his organization is powered by the labor of volunteers who pay for their own travel, he said. Which is part of the reason Washington approached American University to enlist students for help. This summer, Project Contact completed construction of a building that now houses a permanent clinic in Kibera. He envisions the study-abroad students teaching classes and mentoring young Kenyans in the clinic's extra rooms. "The community is going to love them to death there," he said, face glowing with optimism as he imagined a ripple effect of volunteerism overseas. "A dollar a day can save a life," he said. "I say, don't give money; come with us and buy some medicine when we get there. . . . What if a thousand people say, 'I want to do what Kermit is doing'?" The American University program is capitalizing on a resurgence of interest in Africa on college campuses across the country, school officials said, as well as the growing number of students interested in international development and humanitarian work. "Young people today are concerned with the state of the world," said Louis Goodman, dean of American's School of International Service. "They want to find peaceable solutions to global problems." Only in recent years have a number of schools begun to offer study-abroad programs that engage students in development work. AU officials said the school's ties to Washington enabled them to start within months a program that might ordinary have taken years to arrange. It's tempting to wonder if Washington threw himself into a life of good works to redeem his image after the night of the catastrophic punch. Not at all, he said. He had spent his life before that working hard to do the right thing -- making good grades, trying to please everyone -- only to find it meant nothing after one shattering event. "You get to the point where you can't worry about what people think," he said flatly. "You don't go to Africa because you want to impress people -- it's dangerous." If he had his choice, he said, he'd keep his image out of the Project Contact endeavor, disappear from the public spotlight and work in Kibera year-round. But the organization needs funding and volunteers -- things that come through public exposure, which is something his celebrity can command. "When you're in Africa, you realize death is all around us," Washington said. "I hope when I'm on my deathbed, I can say it wasn't a wasted life."

CBS News "60 Minutes" 10 Oct 2004 www.cbsnews.com/sections/60minutes Witnessing Genocide In Sudan Oct. 10, 2004 Refugees in the camps live day to day, some on the brink of death, with the threat of disease always near. (Photo: CBS/60 Minutes) "Fifty thousand people have died so far. ...When we know there are between a million and two million who can yet be saved, what is our excuse for watching this happen in slow motion?" Samantha Power Ninety percent of refugees from the violence are women and children. (Photo: CBS/60 Minutes) FOR MORE INFORMATION: International Rescue Committee Find out how to support humanitarian assistance for those driven from their homes by the violence in Darfur. (CBS) We’ve all been hearing about something horrible in the African country of Sudan. So, 60 Minutes decided to go there to find out what’s going on. What it found was evidence of a government-backed campaign to wipe out an entire race of people. There are at least 50,000 dead, and a million on the run — facts that led the U.S. government last month to call what was happening genocide. Correspondent Scott Pelley reports. -It started a year and a half ago in part of Sudan called Darfur. Rebels looking for a measure of freedom revolted against Sudan’s authoritarian Islamic government. The government apparently decided to end the revolt by attempting to wipe out all the native Africans in Darfur, essentially to clear the territory for the Arabs. Some of what 60 Minutes camera crews found is hard to watch. But the U.N. says this is the greatest crisis in the world today. What does genocide look like? 60 Minutes traveled to the middle of Africa, where innocent victims were pouring across the border of Sudan into Chad. There are 10 refugee camps up and down the Chad/Sudan border. Some are larger; others smaller. One camp has about 19,000 refugees, but in the entire region, there are 189,000 refugees, and the U.N. is planning for another 100,000 on top of that. One camp is the farthest north, which means it’s in the driest part of the Sahara. Walking around it, you are struck by one thing. If this is better than where they came from, imagine what they are fleeing. Pelley visits one of the villages burning in Sudan. The Sudanese government has unleashed African Arabs, called the Janjaweed, to wipe out tribal blacks. The name Sudan ironically is Arabic, meaning "land of the blacks." But the Janjaweed is rewriting that history in blood. Janjaweed, by the way, has a translation, too. It means "evil on horseback." What's been happening to these people over the last 17 months or so? "They’ve been subjected to one of the most brutal campaigns of ethnic cleansing that Africa has ever seen," says John Prendergast, director of African Affairs at the National Security Council for the Clinton White House. He's now with the International Crisis Group, a human rights organization documenting the disaster in Sudan and neighboring Chad. "A government-made hurricane hit Darfur over the last 17 months, using these Janjaweed militias. And the human debris has washed up on the shores of Chad," says Prendergast. The refugees are from Sudan’s western province, Darfur, a region the size of Texas. Prendergast calls the survivors "lucky." Many of these survivors were chased across the desert border into Chad by the Janjaweed. "The Janjaweed are like a grotesque mixture of the mafia and the Ku Klux Klan. These guys have a racist ideology that sees the Arab population as the supreme population that would like to see the subjugation of non-Arab peoples," says Prendergast. "They’re criminal racketeers that have been supported very directly by the government to wage the war against the people of Darfur." Survivors say the attacks usually start at dawn, with bombs falling from planes of the Sudanese Air Force. "And then here come the Janjaweed on camel or on horseback. They come rolling into the town, shooting and torching the village -- often bringing women to the side and raping women indiscriminately," says Prendergast. "And in order to ensure that the destruction is complete, the government either sends ground forces to oversee the operation, or the attack helicopters, which often are the most deadly things." "They arrived on horseback, killed my husband and took my son," says Toona, who still doesn't know what happened to her son eight months later. She left Sudan with five surviving children after the Janjaweed burned her village. "They never gave me a chance to talk to my child. Some of them dragged my son away, others slaughtered my husband, and some others took me to the side, and tortured me and left me there," says Toona. "My newborn was snatched off my back, and was left lying on the ground. I found him in that situation when they let me go." Zara lost eight members of her family. "They attacked us very early in the morning, some militiamen on horseback and camels and some soldiers in military vehicles. There was an airplane above," she says. "They burned the village, they killed some people, they slashed their throats and captured others." Zara's husband was killed, along with two children, two sisters and three brothers. To reach Chad, Zara walked 10 days carrying a one-year-old boy -- now her only child. They found refuge in the sprawling camps that are an emergency response by the International Rescue Committee and the United Nations. They are holding the desert back with nothing more than tarps and trucks. Tents that go up white are soon painted by the Sahara. Food comes from hundreds of miles away. Water flows in, one tanker at a time. 60 Minutes found a four-month-old refugee and orphan in a shelter for severely malnourished children. His mother died in childbirth. His father was murdered in Sudan. All he has is a grandmother and five brothers. His grandmother pours formula past his lips all day to wash away the hunger that nearly killed him. Many of the children bare the look of the hunted and the haunted. They are people holding on in the midst of a genocide that aims to exterminate them. One of the things you notice is just how many kids there are, because most of the men are missing or dead. Ninety percent of the refugees are women and children. "These guys have been through hell and back. And it’s just amazing. Look at the smiles and the resilience that the Zagawa people, these are the people that have, are legendary within Sudan for their survival skill," says Prendergast. One woman told Pelley she carried her one-year-old child for 12 days just to get to a camp. "These are the survivors. For many of those people, that was a death march," says Prendergast. "I mean, there were people they had to bury along the way." "These are the lucky ones," adds Prendergast. "That tells you something about what’s going on in Sudan today if these are the lucky ones." The refugees are telling their stories to another American, Samantha Power. She’s investigated ethnic cleansing in Sudan, Rwanda and Kosovo. Last year, she won a Pulitzer Prize for her book “A Problem From Hell, America and the Age of Genocide.” What is the evidence that this is ethnic cleansing, or genocide? "When the Janjaweed come in, and there is interaction between the Janjaweed and the local people, the Janjaweed are shouting ethnic slogans. They are saying, 'You blacks, you Zurga,' sort of like an equivalent of 'nigger.' Get out. You’re slaves. You’re a hyena. Never come back,'" says Power. "When rape is committed, often the same epithets are issued. 'You’re gonna give birth to a light-skinned child now.' They see their task, those who are racially motivated, as one of purification." The death march of that "purification" runs through among the hottest, driest territory on earth. This summer, Power and Prendergast crossed the desert with 60 Minutes into Darfur. We saw just how difficult a journey that can be. When it's dry, the sand gives way like water. When the rains come, riverbeds called Wadis fill with immoveable mud. A lot of people are coming down through this way, and a lot of people don’t make it this far. "There are untold numbers of Darfurians who are stuck," says Power. "We encountered some of them as we drove eastward, and they said, 'If we had the means, we would get to Chad. We’re too sick. We’re too old. Please tell people to send help.'" Five hundred of those people used to live in the village of Hengala. But in January, everything that could burn there did. Men, women, and children were driven out, dead or alive, by the Janjaweed. Sudan’s military government is telling the world that it has reined in the Janjaweed. But outside a town called Fariwiya, 60 Minutes found bodies of evidence that suggest otherwise. In July, anti-government rebels showed what they say is proof of continuing mass murder. "The first thing that greeted us was decomposing flesh. And then, as we walked further up the hill, we saw, almost blending into the sand, the bodies of men who appeared to have been executed," says Power. "Most of the bullet holes seemed to have entered from the back of the head or the back itself. But the thing that I found the most haunting was the one of them had clearly made a run for it. And he almost looked like he was pleading for mercy." And the living are still pleading. In a landscape dominated by desolation, 60 Minutes found refugees still on the journey to the camps. A tree is home for 14-year-old Nasir and 16-year-old Mohammad. They crossed into Chad the night before. They told 60 Minutes their father, uncles, and brothers were killed, and their mother is missing. They’ve been in hiding and walking for eight months living on rainwater and whatever else they could find in the foothills. The shade of the noor tree was their last stop before the refugee camp. With survivors swelling the camps, the threat of cholera or hepatitis rises with each new refugee. Infants are at most risk if disease begins to finish off what the government of Sudan and Janjaweed have started. Power says a million people could die by natural causes, when the cause isn’t natural at all. "This won’t look like Rwanda. If a million people die in Darfur, we’ll all sigh and say, 'Isn’t it a shame we couldn’t get medicine to those poor, sick, Darfurians,'" says Power. "As if they were poor and sick to begin with. Fifty thousand people have died so far. That’s 50,000 too many. But when we know there are between a million and two million who can yet be saved, what is our excuse for watching this happen in slow motion?" Power and Prendergast are calling for a large international force to impose peace in Darfur. Last week, several African countries offered a few thousand troops. There is no timetable for their arrival. In the meantime, the World Health Organization estimates another 6,000 people die every month in the Darfur genocide.

washingtonpost.com 11 Oct 2004 Different Beat For Today's Columbus Day By Courtland Milloy Monday, October 11, 2004; Page B01 "They are all naked and have no knowledge of arms and are very cowardly, for a thousand of them would not face three Christians: and so they are suitable to be governed and made to work and sow and do everything else that shall be necessary, and to build villages and be taught to wear clothing and observe our customs." -- From the log of Christopher Columbus, Dec. 16, 1492, after meeting a group of Indians on the island of Hispaniola. Christopher Columbus won't be celebrated today at the newly opened National Museum of the American Indian on the Mall. But there won't be a Columbus Day protest, either. Instead, the man credited with "discovering" America in 1492 will simply be ignored while native people gather to reflect on more than 20,000 years of survival in this hemisphere. "I don't think a lot of native people would actually celebrate Columbus Day in the way other Americans would," said Jim Pepper Henry, assistant director of community services at the museum and a member of the Kaw Nation of Oklahoma. "I would say that, in this case, despite some of the things that were put into motion with Columbus reaching the Americas, native people still persevered. That's how a lot of them feel about it." Beginning at 10 a.m. in the museum's Potomac Rotunda, a group of native people from Hawaii will demonstrate traditional canoe-building techniques. A drumming group from the Washington area will perform rhythms that have lasted through the millennia. At noon, a variety of tribal members will dance to the beat, showing off styles of social dancing. The public is invited to join in. In other cities, however, the occasion has not been as sociable. On Saturday in Denver, about 600 protesters blocked a Columbus Day parade for an hour before police moved in and made about 230 arrests. Most of the protesters were Native Americans who carried such signs as "Not Genocide, Celebrate Pride" and one that showed a picture of Columbus with the word "savage" written over it. Glenn Morris, a leader with the American Indian Movement of Colorado and co-chairman of the political science department at the University of Colorado, told the Denver Post that historical documents show that Columbus oversaw the slaughter of native people and traded African slaves. "People should be asking why they haven't been told that part of the story," Morris said. Complaints about ethnic stereotyping and misrepresentation are certainly nothing new in the United States. When New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg invited two members of the "Sopranos" cast to walk with him in the 2002 Columbus Day parade, for instance, Italian Americans protested that they were being portrayed as a bunch of murderous Mafioso. In Washington, the official Columbus Day observance will be at 10:45 a.m. at Union Station's Columbus Memorial Statue and Fountain, at Delaware and Massachusetts Avenues NE. There will be a wreath-laying ceremony by the Armed Forces Joint Honor Guard, Knights of Columbus Color Corps and Marine Band. Monika Grzesik, national youth essay contest winner, will read from her entry, "A Day in the Life of Christopher Columbus," which is not likely to include the parts cited by Morris. The first recorded celebration of Columbus, who is believed to be of Italian descent, occurred Oct. 12, 1792. Organized by the Society of Tammany, also known as the Columbian Order, it commemorated the 300th anniversary of Columbus's landing. In 1937, President Franklin D. Roosevelt proclaimed Oct. 12 as Columbus Day, a national holiday; in 1971, President Richard M. Nixon set the second Monday in October as a federal public holiday. Tempers have been flaring since. The group United Native America continues to circulate petitions by the tens of thousands asking that Columbus Day be replaced by a national holiday for Native Americans. This infuriates George Vendegnia, a founder of the Sons of Italy-New Generation in Denver and an organizer of last weekend's parade. "No one can tell us, as Americans, what we can celebrate and what we can't," he told the Denver Post. "This is the holiday we've chosen. This guy discovered this country." Meanwhile, at the Museum of the American Indian, a steady, 20,000-year-old beat goes on.

www.denverpost.com 12 Oct 2004 ed quillen Birth of Columbus Day By Ed Quillen It's turning into a tradition. On the Saturday before the official federal Monday holiday, there's a Columbus Day parade in Denver. And there's a protest against the parade. This year, the protesters blocked the route for about an hour, and more than 200 people were arrested. It's easy to understand the reason for the parade - it's a sort of "Italian-American celebration of ethnic pride." It's also easy to understand the protests - the intercourse that began on Oct. 12, 1492, was devastating to American Indians. But it's not quite so easy to understand why this happens in land-locked Colorado, rather than some maritime venue with a better connection to Columbus. According to the protesters at the Transform Columbus Day Alliance, "There is no better place ... to begin than in Colorado, the birthplace of the Columbus Day holiday." That's true. In 1907, Colorado was the first state to make Columbus Day a state holiday, followed by New York in 1909. How did it come about that Colorado was ahead of New York with something? The answer lies with Casimiro Barela. Although he is one of only 16 people honored with a stained-glass portrait in the rotunda of our state Capitol, he is not nearly as well-known as most of the others, like John Dyer, Kit Carson and Chief Ouray. Barela was born in New Mexico in 1847, and moved to Las Animas County, Colorado, in 1867. He was involved in many enterprises, from freighting to newspaper publishing, but his major business was a profitable ranch that sat 20 miles east of Trinidad. His political career started in 1869 when he was elected justice of the peace. He climbed the ladder quickly: county assessor and territorial representative in 1870, county sheriff in 1871, delegate to the Colorado constitutional convention in 1875, state senator for many years thereafter - a seat he kept even after switching from Democrat to Republican in 1904. In the Territorial Assembly, Barela fought the "English only" lobby of the era, and got the laws published in Spanish as well. As a delegate to the constitutional convention, he argued that "If Colorado is made a state, its progress will be undeniable. This is good, so be it, but it needs the residents of southern Colorado to succeed. These inhabitants need the publication of the laws in Spanish ... ." Colorado thus began statehood with three official languages: English, German and Spanish. A biographer observed that Barela "secured the vote for his people, a right of which they would undoubtedly have been disenfranchised, only God knows how early." Barela also fought the prejudice of that era by ceaselessly advocating statehood for New Mexico, which remained a territory until 1912. It would be difficult to argue that Barela was a bigot, and yet he was the main mover behind Colorado's Columbus Day holiday. He introduced the bill in 1905, his first session as a Republican, but it was tabled. Even so, a statue of Columbus was erected in Pueblo, and the governor proclaimed Oct. 12, 1905, a holiday to be celebrated with a parade. Barela spoke there at some length, honoring Columbus as a man of humble origins who had "presented so many services of such note to civilization and human progress," with the "discovery of a new world where today so many free and independent nations enjoy peace and joy." He noted that the Italians, Portuguese, and Spanish all claimed Columbus, but he "is not the property of a single nation. He is the property of all the Latin race." Barela was likely working some practical politics, since that was a decade of heavy immigration from Italy. In 1900, his Las Animas County had 13 residents of Italian birth; by 1910, it had 3,362. Pueblo County went from 98 to 1,957; Huerfano from 33 to 710; the entire state from 517 to 14,375. Barela had new constituents to serve, and promoting Columbus Day was a way to unify them, no matter where they came from. In 1907, his Columbus Day bill became law in Colorado; the federal government didn't adopt it until 1971. So that's one of the ironies of history here in the state where Columbus Day was born. Columbus Day is now denounced as a celebration of racism and genocide, and yet it was the product of a Colorado pioneer who devoted his political career to fighting discrimination and bigotry. Ed Quillen of Salida (ed@cozine.com) ) is a former newspaper editor whose column appears Tuesday and Sunday.

Tufts Daily 12 oct 2004 Speaker describes children's fate during the Armenian genocide By Patrick Gordon Daily Editorial Board Dr. Glendale-Hilmar Kaiser explored a new facet of the disputed Armenian genocide in a lecture last Thursday that discussed how young Armenian children were able to escape death, though usually at the expense of parting with their parents. "Armenian children had a strong chance of survival" during the period of the starvation, abuse and loss of more than a million Armenians that took place in the early 20th century, said Kaiser, a German scholar of the genocide. Kaiser described the genocide's devastating nature on Turkey's wider Armenian population using authentic and often graphic photos of the genocide. Armenian girls and boys younger than age 13 were often spared, however, because the Turkish government felt it was "possible for Armenian children to be assimilated into Turkish culture," Kaiser said. Marriage into a Turkish family would save girls, especially younger girls, from a more disastrous fate in the genocide's death marches across the Anatolia region. "A saving grace for Armenian girls is the Turkish social structure," Kaiser said. "An Armenian woman who married a Turkish man automatically became Turkish by association." The Turkish government also provided funds specifically to "feed the Armenian children," because they were also useful laborers, Kaiser said. For this reason, there also "was a clear pattern for survival of boys" because they were needed to "work as shepherds, camel herders and farmhands," Kaiser said. Armenian children were spared because of their importance in Turkey's textile industry as well. Their small hands could reach into the spokes of the spinning machines to retrieve bits of unprocessed cotton, making them "essential to the industry. Without them, the textile industry surely would have collapsed," Kaiser said. But hundreds of thousands of older Armenians were removed from their villages and provinces within Turkish territories, supposedly to be "relocated" to distant and isolated pockets of the empire such as Azur. Instead, the Armenians were subject to a "systematic exposure to starvation, dehydration and contagious diseases," Kaiser said. The Turkish government still denies to this day that there was a genocide, claiming that Armenian populations were simply removed from a "war zones." But some Armenian children, though they were able to avoid the death marches and forced relocations, were exposed to another extreme hardship: prostitution. Kaiser said that "there was rampant child prostitution and rape along Turkey's railroads during this period. Children eight years old and even younger were prostituted in these regions." The origins of the genocide lie partly in the surging fear within Ottoman Turkey that its Armenian population had sided with the Russian forces during World War I. The immediate genocidal period lasted from about April 1915 until Sept. 1916, according to Kaiser. It began with the executions of hundreds of Armenian leaders who had been fooled into gathering in Istanbul. Although Kaiser said that conflicting data and statistics make it difficult to determine precisely how many Armenians were murdered during the genocide, "the Armenian population could have suffered about 1.5 million losses." Kaiser defined a "loss" not simply as a death, but rather as a functioning member of the Armenian community who, for whatever reason, could no longer rejoin it after the genocide. "How many people were ravaged by disease and made infertile? How many were reduced to insanity by the death marches? How many Armenian women were married into Turkish families?" Kaiser said. And though Kaiser stressed that the genocide was rapidly planned and carried out by the Turkish government, he said that "there was no long-term conspiracy to kill Armenians." Rather, "it occurred when the Turks had every reason to believe that their last hour had come [as a result of World War I]." "[It was more] the Turks saying 'we'll take care of the Armenians before we go down ourselves,'" Kaiser said. Kaiser was invited to speak by the Tufts Armenian Club. About 30 people attended the discussion, which took place Thursday night in Eaton Hall.

NJ Star Ledger 15 Oct 2004 Survivors share Holocaust's lessons Friday, October 15, 2004 BY CATHERINE JUN Star-Ledger Staff Ursula Pawel was barely a teenager in Dusseldorf, Germany, when she fell in love with a foreign mouse with big ears -- Mickey Mouse. She remembers the day she and her friends went to the theater to see the newest Disney flick. They were frozen at the entrance by a sign reading, "Jews Cannot Enter." That was the beginning of a living nightmare that besieged her teenage years, one in which she was branded with a yellow star, subjected to beatings and sent to concentration camps and eventually to Auschwitz, all before her 20th birthday. The 78-year-old Bedminster resident told her story yesterday at the second conference held by the Council of Holocaust Educators, a national organization that fosters education on the Holocaust and other genocides. Among the 80 people who attended the two-day event held at Raritan Valley Community College, most were high school teachers from the state, but some came from as far away as Minnesota. "I hope educators will walk away with a better understanding of the history," said Colleen Tambuscio, president of the council. She also hoped they would inspire students to apply the lessons of the Holocaust to today's terrorism and discrimination. Workshops were scheduled throughout the day on such topics as the history of prewar Germany and how to teach the Holocaust to elementary students. Molly Maffei, director of education at the Virginia Holocaust Museum in Richmond, Va. Maffei said that young children can understand some of the lessons of the Holocaust. "You can introduce the themes to them," said the former third- grade teacher. The morning opened with readings by Alexandra Zapruder, author of "Salvaged Pages," a collection of diary entries written by children in concentration camps and ghettos. "Time ... whatever you are bringing for me -- life or death -- bring it quickly," she said, reading the words of a young girl. The author encouraged teachers to share with their students both the heroic stories and the despairing ones. Only then will "we teach our children to see the Holocaust not through rose- colored, hopeful glasses, but see it truthfully for what it was." Tova Friedman of Highland Park was moved listening to the diary of a 14-year- old Lithuanian boy describing the ghetto. She had endured Nazi brutality and survived Auschwitz when she was a child. "I remember the ruins as the ghetto was being destroyed, and the children hiding in the crevices," she said about her own experience. Maud Dahme, 68, who survived by hiding with her sister in the home of a Christian family in Holland, told of the kindness shown by the family that risked their lives to save her. "My hope with speaking with your students is really to instill in them the love and caring my sister and I received," said Dahme, member of the state board of education. For Margit Feldman, 75, of Bridgewater, her childhood in concentration camps is something she does not want to forget. "It's part of my life," said Feldman, who helped push for legislation mandating Holocaust education in New Jersey schools. The conference will resume today at 9 a.m. with discussion including other genocides in recent history. Speakers will include Jerry Fowler of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington, D.C., who will discuss the current situation in Darfur, Sudan; Yvette Rugasagunhunga, a survivor of the Rwandan genocide; and Peter Balakian of Colgate University, who will discuss the Armenian genocide. Catherine Jun works in the Hunterdon County bureau. She can be reached at cjun@starleger.com or (908) 782-8326.

www.newsday.com 17 Oct 2004 U.S. AT ODDS OVER WORLD TRIBUNAL Bush administration suspends aid to nations that refuse to shield Americans from war-crimes court BY LETTA TAYLER LATIN AMERICA CORRESPONDENT October 17, 2004 ROSEAU, Dominica - Translucent and beguiling, the Caribbean waters that surround this speck of a tropical island define tranquillity. And therein lies the problem. Gone are the Dominican Coast Guard vessels that used to prowl the coast, stalking drug traffickers who whiz toward the United States in boats filled with cocaine. They've been grounded, victims of a spat over an international war-crimes court that has prompted Washington to withhold millions of dollars in aid over the past year from allies around the globe. "The drug dealers feel they have free passage because we're not out patrolling," said Sgt. Eric Elizee, the Coast Guard commander, as he stared at his idled boats. With no money to fuel and repair the fleet, he said, "we just sit here and pray." Dominica is not alone. A Bush administration policy of suspending military aid to nations that won't promise to shield Americans from the war-crimes tribunal, called the International Criminal Court, is reducing or canceling dozens of programs that further U.S. interests abroad, Newsday has found. Among numerous examples, Croatia lost $5.8 million that was earmarked primarily for training troops - a process that would aid its entry into the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Tanzania lost $450,000 to bolster security, even though it was the site of a deadly U.S. Embassy bombing in 1998. Elsewhere in Africa, Washington withheld more than $7 million from South Africa, $500,000 from Benin and $250,000 from Mali - funds earmarked for "strengthening regional stability" and decreasing reliance on U.S. peacekeepers. Ecuador, a key ally in the U.S. war on drugs, lost $15.7 million, much of it for military equipment that could help detect narco-traffickers on its border with Colombia, the primary source of cocaine entering the United States. The war-crimes court, which opened two years ago in The Hague, Netherlands, with strong support from the United Nations, is the first permanent international body to try individuals for war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity. It aims to prosecute cases when nations can't or won't do so themselves. U.S. officials say Americans must be shielded from the court because rogue nations could use it to launch politically motivated lawsuits against the United States. "Unaccountable judges, prosecutors, could pull our troops, our diplomats up for trial," President George W. Bush said of the court during his first debate with Democratic contender John Kerry, who supports the tribunal. Returning unprompted to the topic in his second debate with Kerry, Bush acknowledged Washington was at odds with some nations over the court, but insisted: "Sometimes in this world you make unpopular decisions because you think they're right." Kerry did not respond on either occasion. Safeguards in place Critics acknowledge the United States may be unfairly targeted because of its superpower status, but insist the court has built in safeguards to prevent prosecution. Rather than helping U.S. citizens, they say, the funding freezes are further tarnishing Washington's image among allies already opposed to U.S. policies, including the invasion of Iraq. "The United States is resorting to strong-arm tactics that have created a great deal of ill will while harming its own wars on drugs and terrorism," said Richard Dicker, director for international justice at New York-based Human Rights Watch. Washington's campaign is forcing nations that have joined the court to apply a double standard of international justice, critics contend: immunity for U.S. citizens but prosecution for everyone else. "The principal superpower, which should guide other nations toward the rule of law, is turning into a bully of the world," said Arthur Robinson, former president of Trinidad and Tobago and architect of the International Criminal Court. Trinidad and Tobago lost $450,000 in funding for its Coast Guard, most of it in training, for not signing a pact called an Article 98 that pledges to not surrender U.S. nationals to the court if they are suspected of committing crimes on foreign soil. It is among nearly two dozen nations whose military aid remains halted for not signing an Article 98 with the United States, the only government to seek such non-surrender pacts. U.S. State Department officials insist the funding suspensions aren't harming national interests because the aid has been transferred to equally valuable programs elsewhere. For governments that have "stepped up to the plate" by signing non-surrender pacts, "it's been a positive for the relationship," said Patricia McNerney, senior adviser to John Bolton, the U.S. undersecretary of state for international security. In many instances, she added, "more assistance has come their way." That hasn't been the case in Dominica, which in May reluctantly signed a non-surrender accord after as many as 15 Dominica citizens drowned in a capsized boat that the Coast Guard couldn't rescue because it had no cash for fuel. It is one of several nations that created an uproar domestically by signing an Article 98 because it needed the money. As soon as Dominica signed, Bush authorized the release of the $400,000 in suspended aid - almost the entire Dominican Coast Guard budget and a fortune to this country of 70,000 people. But Dominica has yet to receive a penny. "Usually when you have a bear breathing down your neck, the best way to make the bear go away is to yield, but so far that hasn't worked," said Crispin Gregoire, Dominica's ambassador to the United Nations. "We are trying to help the United States fight the war on drugs, and this is what we get." Mary Ellen Gilroy, deputy chief of mission for the Barbados-based U.S. Embassy for the Eastern Caribbean, blamed the delay on bureaucracy. Dominica "will get its money," she promised, but acknowledged: "I don't know when." Washington's campaign against the court has shown mixed results. Though several governments have signed Article 98s, only about one-fourth of the accords have been deemed legally binding in the nations that penned them. None of the court's most prominent members, including all the European Union nations, has signed non-surrender pacts. Underscoring continued international opposition to the U.S. policy, the UN Security Council refused in June to exempt U.S. peacekeepers from prosecution by the tribunal as it had for two previous years. That refusal was motivated in part by the scandal over U.S. troops' abuse of Iraqis detained at Abu Ghraib prison. In retaliation, the Pentagon withdrew nine U.S. peacekeepers from nations that haven't signed Article 98s. The campaign against the court also is being fought in the U.S. Congress. In July, the House of Representatives approved a measure that would extend the ban on military aid to virtually all forms of foreign assistance when nations don't sign Article 98s. It appears unlikely, however, that the bill will become law this session. Exemptions and waivers Congress passed a law two years ago authorizing the aid suspensions, but exempted NATO members and a handful of other allies. The law allows Bush to issue additional waivers to nations deemed vital to national interests. But few have been forthcoming, and even some nations that received them were threatened with funding cuts. Jordan, one of the few U.S. allies in the Middle East, had a waiver, but Washington still threatened to withhold $100 million in aid for training Iraqi policemen - who are desperately needed to replace U.S. troops in Iraq - if it didn't sign an Article 98. Though U.S. officials capitulated after Jordan refused to sign, "It leaves a very sour taste, particularly because countries who support the International Criminal Court are traditional allies of the United States," one foreign diplomat close to the issue said. Those allies include Croatia, where U.S. officials are withholding military aid even as they have asked the Croatian government to send troops to Iraq and expand its military presence in Afghanistan. Croatia already is facing fire at home for acceding to a request from Washington and other governments to send Croatians to a separate international court judging war crimes in the former Yugoslavia. "It would be very difficult to explain to the Croatian public how we can have one way of treating our own citizens and another for citizens of another country," Croatian President Stjepan Mesic said last year. Another ally that lost out is St. Vincent and the Grenadines, a West Indies archipelago near Dominica, which diverted funds from social assistance programs to keep its Coast Guard afloat after losing $300,000 in U.S. aid. Consequently, the government couldn't afford to distribute enough galvanized steel and lumber to rebuild all 400 homes leveled last month by Hurricane Ivan, officials there said. "It's been quite a strain on us," said Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves. "But because we need to keep our tourists safe, I have to protect my borders." Colombia sides with U.S. Colombia's president Alvaro Uribe, arguably the staunchest U.S. ally in Latin America, signed an Article 98 last year to avoid losing $130 million for training, helicopters and other equipment. Though government officials deny kowtowing, opposition leaders insist Uribe buckled because of fear Washington would cut other vital aid such as trade deals that allow Colombia to sell half its exports to the United States. "We were made to understand indirectly that it wasn't only the military aid at risk, but also our close bilateral relations with the United States, which are critical to us," said Colombian opposition Sen. Jimmy Chamorra, who unsuccessfully sought to have the Article 98 rescinded on grounds it wasn't ratified by the country's legislature. In some nations, relations are so frayed over the non-surrender agreements that foreign officials accuse Washington of canceling programs beyond those required by law, as added punishment. In Ecuador, Jorge Gross, a chief defense ministry aide, suspects his nation's refusal to sign an Article 98 - a decision that cost them counter-narcotics equipment including night-vision goggles, radars and bulletproof vests - prompted the Pentagon to cancel a program in which U.S. military would have built nine schools and surgically repaired birth defects on impoverished children. A U.S. Defense Department spokesman said the program was scrapped because Ecuador refused to let U.S. service members enter the country with their weapons. In Dominica, some people view the funding freeze as part of a broader pattern. Many mention a case Washington won before the World Trade Organization seven years ago that blocked the former British colony from selling bananas at preferential prices to the European Union. That ruling helped U.S. banana companies but practically killed the banana industry in Dominica, making the country more desperate for cash. "Maybe if the United States had let us sell our bananas, we wouldn't need their money to run the Coast Guard," suggested octogenarian Martin John, as he sat on a stoop in this tiny capital city, sporting a New York Yankees cap. "We've always been friends to the United States. Maybe we shouldn't be so friendly." Strong-arm tactics As of July, more than 90 countries were members of the two-year-old International Criminal Court in The Hague, the first permanent world body designed to prosecute war crimes and genocide. Of those, 30 member nations have concluded bilateral non-surrender agreements with the United States, exempting American soldiers from prosecution. Some of those that have refused to sign, however, have seen their foreign aid dry up. ICC member nations that have concluded bilateral nonsurrender agreements with the United States (30) Afghanistan o Albania o Antigua & Barbuda o Belize o Botswana o Burkina Faso o Central African Republic o Colombia o Dijbouti o Democratic Republic of the Congo o Dominica o East Timor o Fiji o Gabon o Gambia o Georgia o Ghana o Guinea o Honduras o Macedonia o Malawi o Mauritius o Mongolia o Nigeria o Panama o Senegal o Sierra Leone o Tajikistan o Uganda o Zambia ICC member nations that have not concluded bilateral non-surrender agreements with the United States (57) o Andorra o Argentina* o Australia* o Austria o Belgium o Benin o Brazil o Britain* o Bulgaria o Canada* o Costa Rica o Croatia o Cyprus o Denmark* o Eastern Caribbean (Barbados and St. Vincent and the Grenadines) o Ecuador o Estonia* o Finland o France* o Germany* o Greece* o Hungary* o Iceland* o Ireland o Italy o Jordan* o Latvia* o Lesotho o Liechtenstein o Lithuania* o Luxembourg* o Mali o Malta o Namibia o the Netherlands* o New Zealand* o Niger o Norway* o Paraguay o Peru o Poland* o Portugal* o Republic of the Congo o Samoa o San Marino o Serbia & Montenegro o Slovakia* o Slovenia o South Africa o South Korea o Spain o Sweden o Switzerland o Tanzania o Trinidad & Tobago o Uruguay o Venezuela *Exempt from having to sign bilateral agreement Status as of July What it's costing them Members of the International Criminal Court that have forfeited the most foreign aid as a result of an unwillingness to sign a bilateral non-surrender agreement with the United States. NATION AMOUNT FORFEITED Ecuador $15.7 million South Africa $7.6 million Croatia $5.8 million Peru $2.7 million Uruguay $1.5 million Malta $1.3 million Eastern Caribbean $1 million# Venezuela $700,000 Benin $500,000 Brazil $500,000 Serbia & Montenegro $500,000 Trinidad & Tobago $450,000 Costa Rica $400,000 Paraguay $300,000 Mali $250,000 (Figures are rounded) # Estimated total SOURCE: GLOBAL SOLUTIONS

washingtonpost.com 20 Oct 2004 Bosnia, 1994-1995 Page A08 Only a few years later, Kerry backed U.S. intervention in two bloody struggles in the Balkans: first in Bosnia, then in Kosovo. "History has taught us that we can't sit idly by while people commit these incredible evil acts against humanity," the Boston Globe quoted Kerry as saying in response to Serb attacks on Bosnian civilians in Sarajevo in 1994. "There are basic interests at stake," he added. Aides who worked for Kerry during the Balkan crises said he saw them as significantly different from the war against Iraq: They threatened to destabilize Europe but could be contained with less risk to U.S. forces, they said. But Kerry appeared to be moved mainly by the specter of genocide against the Muslim population. The memories of Rwandans slaughtering one another while major powers averted their eyes were still vivid for many lawmakers, including Kerry, and they didn't want to see it happen again, the aides said. In addition, there was a Democrat in the White House -- unlike in 1991 -- and some Republicans were trying to score political points off President Bill Clinton's handling of the Balkan crises, they said. Kerry rode to the aid of the Clinton administration in the major congressional showdown over Bosnia, helping lead the fight in the Senate against lifting an arms embargo on Bosnia, a move that major U.S. allies also vigorously opposed. He argued that lifting the arms embargo would help the Serbs and compel the British- and French-led peacekeeping force to withdraw. "This is a policy that's an epitaph for Bosnia, and it basically says, 'We ignored you for a few years, then we lifted the embargo after we did you damage, and we wished you good luck. Have a nice war,' " he said. Congress passed the anti-embargo bill, but Clinton vetoed it.

www.whitehouse.gov For Immediate Release Office of the Press Secretary October 21, 2004 Humanitarian Assistance for Darfur Humanitarian Assistance for the People of Darfur The United States is working to reduce suffering from the Darfur crisis. With manpower and money, we continue to support the humanitarian efforts underway in order to avert an even greater loss of life in the region. The United States leads the world in responding to the crisis in Darfur. We have provided over $300 million in aid to date for food, shelter, access to clean water, and basic health services for the 1.5 million displaced people of Darfur. Recognizing the severity of crisis, the United States has already exceeded its humanitarian aid pledge for 2005 and will provide additional assistance. The United States has disaster specialists on the ground, is assisting UN organizations and their efforts, is funding dozens of NGOs that directly assist people in need, is funding human rights monitoring, and is engaging the Sudanese government to further improve humanitarian access to the region. This support, combined with that of other countries, has made it possible for at least some assistance to reach 90 percent of Darfur's displaced people. Though there has been some progress in reducing the suffering and loss of life, the crisis in Darfur continues. The world community must work together to bring an end to the crisis while simultaneously supporting persons already displaced. We commend the African Union's efforts to stem the violence and call on the world to support their efforts. We also urge the international community to respond generously to fund the vital programs that support the victims in both Chad and Sudan. Only when the people of Darfur can safely return home will the job be done. # # #

washingtonpost.com 22 Oct 2004 Darfur: The View From Khartoum Friday, October 22, 2004; Page A24 The Oct. 3 editorial "As Darfur Waits" used the term "genocide," although people involved with the situation in Sudan, such as Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, the chairman of the African Union, refuse to use such characterizations. The editorial seemed to be based on the cynical exploitation of the Darfur crisis by discredited groups such as the Sudan Campaign -- groups that pay no heed to the root of the conflict or to the measures taken by my government to solve it. Nor did the editorial mention the atrocities committed by the two rebel groups in Darfur. This one-sided position discourages the rebels from making peace. Talks between the Sudanese government and rebel groups from Darfur, sponsored by the African Union, are taking place in Abuja, Nigeria, but Western media are not reporting that they have deadlocked on the issue of whether rebels should disarm at the same time as the Janjaweed militia. Instead of bellicose statements to impede peace in Sudan, the U.S. media could push the U.N. Security Council to assist all parties in Abuja in finding suitable solutions and to help the African Union in supervising and monitoring efforts of all parties in western Sudan to establish peace and security. Sudan seeks international help and investments to build a complete nation and remove the divisions and inequalities left by decades of civil strife. KHIDIR HAROUN AHMED Ambassador Embassy of Sudan Washington

NYT 24 Oct 2004 After Terror, a Secret Rewriting of Military Law By TIM GOLDEN WASHINGTON - In early November 2001, with Americans still staggered by the Sept. 11 attacks, a small group of White House officials worked in great secrecy to devise a new system of justice for the new war they had declared on terrorism. Determined to deal aggressively with the terrorists they expected to capture, the officials bypassed the federal courts and their constitutional guarantees, giving the military the authority to detain foreign suspects indefinitely and prosecute them in tribunals not used since World War II. The plan was considered so sensitive that senior White House officials kept its final details hidden from the president's national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice, and the secretary of state, Colin L. Powell, officials said. It was so urgent, some of those involved said, that they hardly thought of consulting Congress. White House officials said their use of extraordinary powers would allow the Pentagon to collect crucial intelligence and mete out swift, unmerciful justice. "We think it guarantees that we'll have the kind of treatment of these individuals that we believe they deserve," said Vice President Dick Cheney, who was a driving force behind the policy. But three years later, not a single terrorist has been prosecuted. Of the roughly 560 men being held at the United States naval base at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, only 4 have been formally charged. Preliminary hearings for those suspects brought such a barrage of procedural challenges and public criticism that verdicts could still be months away. And since a Supreme Court decision in June that gave the detainees the right to challenge their imprisonment in federal court, the Pentagon has stepped up efforts to send home hundreds of men whom it once branded as dangerous terrorists. "We've cleared whole forests of paper developing procedures for these tribunals, and no one has been tried yet," said Richard L. Shiffrin, who worked on the issue as the Pentagon's deputy general counsel for intelligence matters. "They just ended up in this Kafkaesque sort of purgatory." The story of how Guantánamo and the new military justice system became an intractable legacy of Sept. 11 has been largely hidden from public view. But extensive interviews with current and former officials and a review of confidential documents reveal that the legal strategy took shape as the ambition of a small core of conservative administration officials whose political influence and bureaucratic skill gave them remarkable power in the aftermath of the attacks. The strategy became a source of sharp conflict within the Bush administration, eventually pitting the highest-profile cabinet secretaries - including Ms. Rice and Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld - against one another over issues of due process, intelligence-gathering and international law. In fact, many officials contend, some of the most serious problems with the military justice system are rooted in the secretive and contentious process from which it emerged. Military lawyers were largely excluded from that process in the days after Sept. 11. They have since waged a long struggle to ensure that terrorist prosecutions meet what they say are basic standards of fairness. Uniformed lawyers now assigned to defend Guantánamo detainees have become among the most forceful critics of the Pentagon's own system. Foreign policy officials voiced concerns about the legal and diplomatic ramifications, but had little influence. Increasingly, the administration's plan has come under criticism even from close allies, complicating efforts to transfer scores of Guantánamo prisoners back to their home governments. To the policy's architects, the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon represented a stinging challenge to American power and an imperative to consider measures that might have been unimaginable in less threatening times. Yet some officials said the strategy was also shaped by longstanding political agendas that had relatively little to do with fighting terrorism. The administration's claim of authority to set up military commissions, as the tribunals are formally known, was guided by a desire to strengthen executive power, officials said. Its legal approach, including the decision not to apply the Geneva Conventions, reflected the determination of some influential officials to halt what they viewed as the United States' reflexive submission to international law. In devising the new system, many officials said they had Osama bin Laden and other leaders of Al Qaeda in mind. But in picking through the hundreds of detainees at Guantánamo Bay, military investigators have struggled to find more than a dozen they can tie directly to significant terrorist acts, officials said. While important Qaeda figures have been captured and held by the C.I.A., administration officials said they were reluctant to bring those prisoners before tribunals they still consider unreliable. Some administration officials involved in the policy declined to be interviewed, or would do so only on the condition they not be identified. Others defended it strongly, saying the administration had a responsibility to consider extraordinary measures to protect the country from a terrifying enemy. "Everybody who was involved in this process had, in my mind, a white hat on," Timothy E. Flanigan, the former deputy White House counsel, said in an interview. "They were not out to be cowboys or create a radical new legal regime. What they wanted to do was to use existing legal models to assist in the process of saving lives, to get information. And the war on terror is all about information." As the policy has faltered, other current and former officials have criticized it on pragmatic grounds, arguing that many of the problems could have been avoided. But some of the criticism also has a moral tone. "What several of us were concerned about was due process," said John A. Gordon, a retired Air Force general and former deputy C.I.A. director who served as both the senior counterterrorism official and homeland security adviser on President Bush's National Security Council staff. "There was great concern that we were setting up a process that was contrary to our own ideals." An Aggressive Approach The administration's legal approach to terrorism began to emerge in the first turbulent days after Sept. 11, as the officials in charge of key agencies exhorted their aides to confront Al Qaeda's threat with bold imagination. "Legally, the watchword became 'forward-leaning,' '' said a former associate White House counsel, Bradford Berenson, "by which everybody meant: 'We want to be aggressive. We want to take risks.' '' That challenge resounded among young lawyers who were settling into important posts at the White House, the Justice Department and other agencies. Many of them were members of the Federalist Society, a conservative legal fraternity. Some had clerked for Supreme Court justices, Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia in particular. A striking number had clerked for a prominent Reagan appointee, Lawrence H. Silberman of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. One young lawyer recalled looking around the room during a meeting with Attorney General John Ashcroft. "Of 10 people, 7 of us were former Silberman clerks," he said. Mr. Berenson, then 36, had been consumed with the nomination of federal judges until he was suddenly reassigned to terrorism issues and thrown into intense, 15-hour workdays, filled with competing urgencies and intermittent new alerts. "All of a sudden, the curtain was lifted on this incredibly frightening world," he said. "You were spending every day looking at the dossiers of the world's leading terrorists. There was a palpable sense of threat." As generals prepared for war in Afghanistan, lawyers scrambled to understand how the new campaign against terrorism could be waged within the confines of old laws. Mr. Flanigan was at the center of the administration's legal counteroffensive. A personable, soft-spoken father of 14 children, his easy manner sometimes belied the force of his beliefs. He had arrived at the White House after distinguishing himself as an agile legal thinker and a Republican stalwart: During the Clinton scandals, he defended the independent counsel, Kenneth W. Starr, saying he had conducted his investigation "in a moderate and appropriate fashion." In 2000, he played an important role on the Bush campaign's legal team in the Florida recount. In the days after the Sept. 11 attacks, Mr. Flanigan sought advice from the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel on "the legality of the use of military force to prevent or deter terrorist activity inside the United States,'' according to a previously undisclosed department memorandum that was reviewed by The New York Times. The 20-page response came from John C. Yoo, a 34-year-old Bush appointee with a glittering résumé and a reputation as perhaps the most intellectually aggressive among a small group of legal scholars who had challenged what they saw as the United States' excessive deference to international law. On Sept. 21, 2001, Mr. Yoo wrote that the question was how the Constitution's Fourth Amendment rights against unreasonable search and seizure might apply if the military used "deadly force in a manner that endangered the lives of United States citizens." Mr. Yoo listed an inventory of possible operations: shooting down a civilian airliner hijacked by terrorists; setting up military checkpoints inside an American city; employing surveillance methods more sophisticated than those available to law enforcement; or using military forces "to raid or attack dwellings where terrorists were thought to be, despite risks that third parties could be killed or injured by exchanges of fire." Mr. Yoo noted that those actions could raise constitutional issues, but said that in the face of devastating terrorist attacks, "the government may be justified in taking measures which in less troubled conditions could be seen as infringements of individual liberties." If the president decided the threat justified deploying the military inside the country, he wrote, then "we think that the Fourth Amendment should be no more relevant than it would be in cases of invasion or insurrection." The prospect of such military action at home was mostly hypothetical at that point, but with the government taking the fight against terrorism to Afghanistan and elsewhere around the world, lawyers in the administration took the same "forward-leaning" approach to making plans for the terrorists they thought would be captured. The idea of using military commissions to try suspected terrorists first came to Mr. Flanigan, he said, in a phone call a couple of days after the attacks from William P. Barr, the former attorney general under whom Mr. Flanigan had served as head of the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel during the first Bush administration. Mr. Barr had first suggested the use of military tribunals a decade before, to try suspects in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland. Although the idea made little headway at the time, Mr. Barr said he reminded Mr. Flanigan that the Legal Counsel's Office had done considerable research on the question. Mr. Flanigan had an aide call for the files. "I thought it was a great idea," he recalled. Military commissions, he thought, would give the government wide latitude to hold, interrogate and prosecute the sort of suspects who might be silenced by lawyers in criminal courts. They would also put the control over prosecutions squarely in the hands of the president. The same ideas were taking hold in the office of Vice President Cheney, championed by his 44-year-old counsel, David S. Addington. At the time, Mr. Addington, a longtime Cheney aide with an indistinct portfolio and no real staff, was not well-known even in the government. But he would become legendary as a voraciously hard-working official with strongly conservative views, an unusually sharp pen and wide influence over military, intelligence and other matters. In a matter of months, he would make a mark as one of the most important architects of the administration's legal strategy against foreign terrorism. Beyond the prosecutorial benefits of military commissions, the two lawyers saw a less tangible, but perhaps equally important advantage. "From a political standpoint," Mr. Flanigan said, "it communicated the message that we were at war, that this was not going to be business as usual." Changing the Rules In fact, very little about how the tribunal policy came about resembled business as usual. For half a century, since the end of World War II, most major national-security initiatives had been forged through interagency debate. But some senior Bush administration officials felt that process placed undue power in the hands of cautious, slow-moving foreign policy bureaucrats. The sense of urgency after Sept. 11 brought that attitude to the surface. Little more than a week after the attacks, officials said, the White House counsel, Alberto F. Gonzales, set up an interagency group to draw up options for prosecuting terrorists. They came together with high expectations. "We were going to go after the people responsible for the attacks, and the operating assumption was that we would capture a significant number of Al Qaeda operatives," said Pierre-Richard Prosper, the State Department official assigned to lead the group. "We were thinking hundreds." Mr. Prosper, then 37, had just been sworn in as the department's ambassador-at-large for war crimes issues. As a prosecutor, he had taken on street gangs and drug Mafias and had won the first genocide conviction before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Even so, some administration lawyers eyed him suspiciously - as more diplomat than crime-fighter. Mr. Gonzales had made it clear that he wanted Mr. Prosper's group to put forward military commissions as a viable option, officials said. The group laid out three others - criminal trials, military courts-martial and tribunals with both civilian and military members, like those used for Nazi war criminals at Nuremberg. Representatives of the Justice Department's criminal division, which had prosecuted a string of Qaeda defendants in federal district court over the previous decade, argued that the federal courts could do the job again. The option of toughening criminal laws or adapting the courts, as several European countries had done, was discussed, but only briefly, two officials said. "The towers were still smoking, literally," Mr. Prosper said. "I remember asking: Can the federal courts in New York handle this? It wasn't a legal question so much as it was logistical. You had 300 Al Qaeda members, potentially. And did we want to put the judges and juries in harm's way?" Lawyers at the White House saw criminal courts as a minefield, several officials said. Much of the evidence against terror suspects would be classified intelligence that would be difficult to air in court or too sketchy to meet federal standards, the lawyers warned. Another issue was security: Was it safe to try Osama bin Laden in Manhattan, where he was facing federal charges for the 1998 bombings of American Embassies in East Africa? Then there was a tactical question. To act pre-emptively against Al Qaeda, the authorities would need information that defense lawyers and due-process rules might discourage suspects from giving up. Mr. Flanigan framed the choice starkly: "Are we going to go with a system that is really guaranteed to prevent us from getting information in every case or are we going to go another route?" Military commissions had no statutory rules of their own. In past American wars, when such tribunals had been used to carry out battlefield justice against spies, saboteurs and others accused of violating the laws of war, they had generally hewed to prevailing standards of military justice. But the advocates for commissions in the Bush administration saw no reason they could not adapt the rules, officials said. Standards of proof could be lowered. Secrecy provisions could be expanded. The death penalty could be more liberally applied. But some members of the interagency group saw it as more complicated. Terrorism had not been clearly established as a war crime under international law. Writing new law for a military tribunal might end up being more difficult than prosecuting terrorism cases in existing courts. By late October 2001, the White House lawyers had grown impatient with what they saw as the dithering of Mr. Prosper's group and what one former official called the "cold feet" of some of its members. Mr. Flanigan said he thought the government needed to move urgently in case a major terrorist linked to the attacks was apprehended. He gathered up the research that the Prosper group had completed on military commissions and took charge of the matter himself. Suddenly, the other options were off the table and the Prosper group was out of business. "Prosper is a thoughtful, gentle, process-oriented guy," the former official said. "At that time, gentle was not an adjective that anybody wanted." A Secretive Circle With the White House in charge, officials said, the planning for tribunals moved forward more quickly, and more secretly. Whole agencies were left out of the discussion. So were most of the government's experts in military and international law. The legal basis for the administration's approach was laid out on Nov. 6 in a confidential 35-page memorandum sent to Mr. Gonzales from Patrick F. Philbin, a deputy in the Legal Counsel's office. (Attorney General Ashcroft has refused recent Congressional requests for the document, but a copy was reviewed by The Times.) The memorandum's plain legalese belied its bold assertions. It said that the president, as commander in chief, has "inherent authority'' to establish military commissions without Congressional authorization. It concluded that the Sept. 11 attacks were "plainly sufficient" to warrant applying the laws of war. Opening a debate that would later divide the administration, the memorandum also suggested that the White House could apply international law selectively. It stated specifically that trying terrorists under the laws of war "does not mean that terrorists will receive the protections of the Geneva Conventions or the rights that laws of war accord to lawful combatants." The central legal precedent cited in the memorandum was a 1942 case in which the Supreme Court upheld President Franklin D. Roosevelt's use of a military commission to try eight Nazi saboteurs who had sneaked into the United States aboard submarines. Since that ruling, revolutions had taken place in both international and military law, with the adoption of the Geneva Conventions in 1949 and the Uniform Code of Military Justice in 1951. Even so, the Justice memorandum said the 1942 ruling had "set a clear constitutional analysis" under which due process rights do not apply to military commissions. Roosevelt, too, created his military commission without new and explicit Congressional approval, and authorized the military to fashion its own procedural rules. He also established himself, rather than a military judge, as the "final reviewing authority'' for the case. Mr. Addington seized on the Roosevelt precedent as a model, two people involved in the process said, despite vast differences. Roosevelt acted against enemy agents in a traditional war among nations. Mr. Bush would be asserting the same power to take on a shadowy network of adversaries with no geographic boundaries, in a conflict with no foreseeable end. Mr. Addington, who drafted the order with Mr. Flanigan, was particularly influential, several officials said, because he represented Mr. Cheney and brought formidable experience in national-security law to a small circle of senior officials. Mr. Addington turned down several requests for interviews and a spokesman for the vice president's office declined to comment. "He was probably the only one there who would know what an order would look like, what it would say," a former Justice Department official said, noting Mr. Addington's work at the Defense Department, the C.I.A., and Congressional intelligence committees. "He didn't have authority over anyone. But he's a persuasive guy." To many officials outside the circle, the secrecy was remarkable. While Mr. Ashcroft and his deputy, Larry D. Thompson, were closely consulted, the head of the Justice Department's criminal division, Michael Chertoff, who had argued for trying terror suspects in federal court, saw the military order only when it was published, officials said. Mr. Rumsfeld was kept informed of the plan mainly through his general counsel, William J. Haynes II, several Pentagon officials said. Many of the Pentagon's experts on military justice, uniformed lawyers who had spent their careers working on such issues, were mostly kept in the dark. "I can't tell you how compartmented things were," said retired Rear Adm. Donald J. Guter, who was then the Navy's senior military lawyer, or judge advocate general. "This was a closed administration." A group of experienced Army lawyers had been meeting with Mr. Haynes repeatedly on the process, but began to suspect that what they said did not resonate outside the Pentagon, several of them said. On Friday, Nov. 9, Defense Department officials said, Mr. Haynes called the head of the team, Col. Lawrence J. Morris, into his office to review a draft of the presidential order. He was given 30 minutes to study it but was not allowed to keep a copy or even take notes. The following day, the Army's judge advocate general, Maj. Gen. Thomas J. Romig, hurriedly convened a meeting of senior military lawyers to discuss a response. The group worked through the Veterans Day weekend to prepare suggestions that would have moved the tribunals closer to existing military justice. But when the final document was issued that Tuesday, it reflected none of the officers' ideas, several military officials said. "They hadn't changed a thing," one official said. In fact, while the military lawyers were pulling together their response, they were unaware that senior administration officials were already at the White House putting finishing touches on the plan. At a meeting that Saturday in the Roosevelt Room, Mr. Cheney led a discussion among Attorney General Ashcroft, Mr. Haynes of the Defense Department, the White House lawyers and a few other aides. Senior officials of the State Department and the National Security Council staff were excluded from final discussions of the policy, even at a time when they were meeting daily about Afghanistan with the officials who were drafting the order. According to two people involved in the process, Mr. Cheney advocated withholding the draft from Ms. Rice and Secretary Powell. When the two cabinet members found out about the military order - upon its public release - Ms. Rice was particularly angry, several senior officials said. Spokesmen for both officials declined to comment. Mr. Bush played only a modest role in the debate, senior administration officials said. In an initial discussion, he agreed that military commissions should be an option, the officials said. Later, Mr. Cheney discussed a draft of the order with Mr. Bush over lunch, one former official said. The president signed the three-page order on Nov. 13. No ceremony accompanied the signing, and the order was released to the public that day without so much as a press briefing. But its historic significance was unmistakable. The military could detain and prosecute any foreigner whom the president or his representative determined to have "engaged in, aided or abetted, or conspired to commit" terrorism. Echoing the Roosevelt order, the Bush document promised "free and fair" tribunals but offered few guarantees: There was no promise of public trials, no right to remain silent, no presumption of innocence. As in 1942, guilt did not necessarily have to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt and a death sentence could be imposed even with a divided verdict. Despite those similarities, some military and international lawyers were struck by the differences. "The Roosevelt order referred specifically to eight people, the eight Nazi saboteurs," said Mr. Shiffrin, who was then the Defense Department's deputy general counsel for intelligence matters and had studied the Nazi saboteurs' case. "Here we were putting in place a parallel system of justice for a universe of people who we had no idea about - who they would be, how many of them there would be. It was a very dramatic measure." Mounting Criticism The White House did its best to play down the drama, but criticism of the order was immediate and widespread. Civil libertarians and some Congressional leaders saw an attempt to supplant the criminal justice system. Critics also worried about the concentration of power: The president or his proxies would define the crimes (often after an act had been committed); set the rules for trial; and choose the judges, juries and appellate panels. Senator Patrick J. Leahy, the Vermont Democrat who was then chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, was among a handful of legislators who argued that the administration's plan required explicit Congressional authorization. The Congress had just passed the Patriot Act by a huge margin, and Mr. Leahy proposed authorizing military commissions, but with some important changes, including a presumption of innocence for defendants and appellate review by the Supreme Court. Critics seized on complaints from abroad, including an announcement from the Spanish authorities that they would not extradite some terrorist suspects to the United States if they would face the tribunals. "We are the most powerful nation on earth," Mr. Leahy said. "But in the struggle against terrorism, we don't have the option of going it alone. Would these military tribunals be worth jeopardizing the cooperation we expect and need from our allies?" Senators called for Mr. Rumsfeld and Mr. Ashcroft to testify about the tribunals plan. Instead, the administration sent Mr. Prosper from the State Department and Mr. Chertoff of the Justice Department - both of whom had questioned the use of commissions and were later excluded from the administration's final deliberations. But the Congressional opposition melted in the face of opinion polls showing strong support for the president's measures against terrorism. There was another reason fears were allayed. With the order signed, the Pentagon was writing rules for exactly how the commissions would be conducted, and an early draft that was leaked to the news media suggested defendants' rights would be expanded. Mr. Rumsfeld, who assembled a group of outside legal experts - including some who had worked on World War II-era tribunals - to consult on the rules, said critics' concerns would be taken into account. But all of the critics were not outside the administration. Many of the Pentagon's uniformed lawyers were angered by the implication that the military would be used to deliver "rough justice" for the terrorists. The Uniform Code of Military Justice had moved steadily into line with the due-process standards of the federal courts, and senior military lawyers were proud and protective of their system. They generally supported using commissions for terrorists, but argued that the system would not be fair without greater rights for defendants. "The military lawyers would from time to time remind the civilians that there was a Constitution that we had to pay attention to," said Admiral Guter, who, after retiring as the Navy judge advocate general, signed a "friend of the court" brief on behalf of plaintiffs in the Guantánamo Supreme Court case. Even as uniformed lawyers were given a greater role in writing rules for the commissions, they still felt out of the loop. In early 2002, Admiral Guter said, during a weekly lunch with Mr. Haynes and the top lawyers for the military branches, he raised the issue with Mr. Haynes directly: "We need more information." Mr. Haynes looked at him coldly. "No, you don't," he quoted Mr. Haynes as saying. Mr. Haynes declined to comment on the exchange. Lt. Col. William K. Lietzau, a Yale-trained Marine lawyer on Mr. Haynes's staff, often found himself in the middle. "I could see how the JAGs were frustrated that the task of setting up the commissions hadn't been delegated to them,'' he said, referring to the senior military lawyers. "On the other hand, I could see how some of their recommendations frustrated the leadership because they didn't always appear to embrace the paradigm shift needed to deal with terrorism." Some Justice Department officials also urged changes in the commission rules, current and former officials said. While Attorney General Ashcroft staunchly defended the policy in public, in a private meeting with Pentagon officials, he said some of the proposed commission rules would be seen as "draconian," two officials said. On nearly every issue, interviews and documents show, the harder line was staked out by White House lawyers: Mr. Addington, Mr. Gonzales and Mr. Flanigan. They opposed allowing civilian lawyers to assist the tribunal defendants, as military courts-martial permit, or allowing civilians to serve on the appellate panel that would oversee the commissions. They also opposed granting defendants a presumption of innocence. In the end, Mr. Rumsfeld compromised. He granted defendants a presumption of innocence and set "beyond a reasonable doubt" as a standard for proving guilt. He also allowed the defendants to hire civilian lawyers, but restricted the lawyers' access to case information. And he gave the presiding officer at a tribunal license to admit any evidence he thought might be convincing to a "reasonable person.'' One right the administration sought to deny the prisoners was the ability to appeal the legality of their detentions in federal court. The administration had done its best to decide the question when searching for a place to detain hundreds of prisoners captured in Afghanistan. Every location it seriously considered - including an American military base in Germany and islands in the South Pacific - was outside the United States and, the administration believed, beyond the reach of the federal judiciary. On Dec. 28, 2001, after officials settled on Guantánamo Bay, Mr. Philbin and Mr. Yoo told the Pentagon in a memorandum that it could make a "very strong" claim that prisoners there would be outside the purview of American courts. But the memorandum cautioned that a reasonable argument could also be made that Guantánamo "while not part of the sovereign territory of the United States, is within the territorial jurisdiction of a federal court." That warning would come back to haunt the administration. A Shift in Power Some of the officials who helped design the new system of justice would later explain the influence they exercised in the chaotic days after Sept. 11 as a response to a crisis. But a more enduring shift of power within the administration was taking place - one that became apparent in a decision that would have significant consequences for how terror suspects were interrogated and detained. At issue was whether the administration would apply the Geneva Conventions to the conflicts with Al Qaeda and the Taliban and whether those enemies would be treated as prisoners of war. Based on the advice of White House and Justice Department lawyers, Mr. Bush initially decided on Jan. 18, 2002, that the conventions would not apply to either conflict. But at a meeting of senior national security officials several days later, Secretary of State Powell asked him to reconsider. Mr. Powell agreed that the conventions did not apply to the global fight against Al Qaeda. But he said troops could be put at risk if the United States disavowed the conventions in dealing with the Taliban - the de facto government of Afghanistan. Both Mr. Rumsfeld and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Richard B. Myers, supported his position, Pentagon officials said. In a debate that included the administration's most experienced national-security officials, a voice heard belonged to Mr. Yoo, only a deputy in the Office of Legal Counsel. He cast Afghanistan as a "failed state," and said its fighters should not be considered a real army but a "militant, terrorist-like group." In a Jan. 25 memorandum, the White House counsel, Mr. Gonzales, characterized that opinion as "definitive," although it was not the final basis for the president's decision. The Gonzales memorandum suggested that the "new kind of war" Mr. Bush wanted to fight could hardly be reconciled with the "quaint" privileges that the Geneva Conventions gave to prisoners of war, or the "strict limitations" they imposed on interrogations. Military lawyers disputed the idea that applying the conventions would necessarily limit interrogators to the name, rank and serial number of their captives. "There were very good reasons not to designate the detainees as prisoners of war, but the claim that they couldn't be interrogated was not one of them," Colonel Lietzau said. Again, though, such questions were scarcely heard, officials involved in the discussions said. Mr. Yoo's rise reflected a different approach by the Bush administration to sensitive legal questions concerning foreign affairs, defense and intelligence. In past administrations, officials said, the Office of Legal Counsel usually weighed in with opinions on questions that had already been deliberated by the legal staffs of the agencies involved. Under Mr. Bush, the office frequently had a first and final say. "O.L.C. was definitely running the show legally, and John Yoo in particular," a former Pentagon lawyer said. "He's kind of fun to be around, and he has an opinion on everything. Even though he was quite young, he exercised disproportionate authority because of his personality and his strong opinions." Mr. Yoo's influence was amplified by friendships he developed not just with Mr. Addington and Mr. Flanigan, but also Mr. Haynes, with whom he played squash as often as three or four times a week at the Pentagon Officers Athletic Club. If the Geneva Conventions debate raised Mr. Yoo's stature, it had the opposite effect on lawyers at the State Department, who were later excluded from sensitive discussions on matters like the interrogation of detainees, officials from several agencies said. "State was cut out of a lot of this activity from February of 2002 on," one senior administration official said. "These were treaties that we were dealing with; they are meant to know about that." The State Department legal adviser, William H. Taft IV, was shunned by the lawyers who dominated the detainee policy, officials said. Although Mr. Taft had served as the deputy secretary of defense during the Reagan administration, more conservative colleagues whispered that he lacked the constitution to fight terrorists. "He was seen as ideologically squishy and suspect," a former White House official said. "People did not take him very seriously." Through a State Department spokesman, Richard A. Boucher, Mr. Taft declined to comment. The rivalries could be almost adolescent. When field trips to Guantánamo Bay were arranged for administration lawyers, the invitations were sometimes relayed last to the State Department and National Security Council, officials said, in the hope that lawyers there would not be able to go on short notice. It was on the first field trip, 10 days after detainees began to arrive there on Jan. 11, 2002, that White House lawyers made clear their intention to move forward quickly with military commissions. On the flight home, several officials said, Mr. Addington urged Mr. Gonzales to seek a blanket designation of all the detainees being sent to Guantánamo as eligible for trial under the president's order. Mr. Gonzales agreed. The next day, the Pentagon instructed military intelligence officers at the base to start filling out one-page forms for each detainee, describing their alleged offenses. Weeks later, Mr. Haynes issued an urgent call to the military services, asking them to submit nominations for a chief prosecutor. The first trials, many military and administration officials believed, were just around the corner.Next: A Policy Unravels Jack Begg contributed research for this article.

washingtonpost.com OUT & ABOUT By Roxanne Roberts Monday, October 25, 2004; Page C03 Honoring Survivors And Their Great Gifts Stanley Tucci chats with survivor Helen Luksenburg. (Rebecca D'Angelo - For The Washington Post) Living history, in the truest sense of the term, was the focus of Thursday's dinner hosted by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. The event at the Mandarin Oriental hotel honored the 73 Holocaust survivors who have volunteered to share their life stories with museum visitors. Museum Director Sara Bloomfield said, "Can you imagine -- people treated with such hate who rebuilt their lives with such love?" The audience of 280 included actor Stanley Tucci (who starred in "Conspiracy," the HBO film on the 1942 Wannsee Conference, which was instrumental in implementing the Final Solution), NPR's Scott Simon and CNN's Wolf Blitzer. The museum's council reiterated its call for an end to genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan as Tucci reminded the audience, "If the conscience stops functioning -- even momentarily -- one is in mortal danger of losing oneself."

NYT 29 Oct 2004 With Nothing Left to Win, Fans of Red Sox Suddenly Feel a Loss By PAM BELLUCK BOSTON, Oct. 28 - It didn't take long to go from ecstatic to existential. Having waited 86 years for a World Series championship, Bostonians found themselves on Thursday swirling with elation, but also scratching their heads. What are Red Sox fans to do when the angst of being one of the world's greatest underdogs is gone? "I'm having trouble dealing with it," said Mike Andrews, who played second base for the Red Sox in 1967, when they lost to the Cardinals during one of their many close-but-no-cigar face-offs. "You're just kind of caught saying, 'What's next?' " said Mr. Andrews, who now leads the Jimmy Fund, a cancer organization in Boston that is the team's principal charity. "I don't want to say it's a letdown. But it's certainly something you let become part of your life and it's gone now, and we need to come up with something new." Bostonians have never been baskers, and the afterglow of the Red Sox' extraordinary World Series triumph over the St. Louis Cardinals has caught more than a few people without their psychological sunblock. "I wish I were able to be more relaxed," said Nathan Levin, 98, who remembers the last time the Red Sox won, in 1918, a time when he used to walk five miles to Fenway Park, wait outside the players' entrance, and once got ushered into the ballpark by Babe Ruth himself. "What it feels like for a 98-year-old man to sit here and watch the Red Sox win it all?" said Mr. Levin, who now yells at the television and second-guesses the manager from his home in West Palm Beach, Fla. "I lived for them all these years. After 1918 and waiting 86 years for this team to do it all again is beyond words for me." But, he said, "Now it's over, what are we going to do next?" Even Leslie Epstein, whose son, Theo, is Red Sox general manager, feels the tension inherent in having a championship team in Boston. "They're going to be heartbroken at not being heartbroken," said Mr. Epstein, a novelist who is chairman of the creative writing department at Boston University. "It's not just a joke. That's what's made us unique. We were the Boston Red Sox that never could win." Mr. Epstein, who has lived for 26 years in the Red Sox Nation, pointed out that A. Bartlett Giamatti, the former baseball commissioner and avid Red Sox fan, once said that Fenway Park was the place to understand Calvinism in America, to learn that people sometimes fail and that failure can build character. "There's a crack in Calvinism now," Mr. Epstein said. "Now, we're going to have to find something else. Maybe Bostonians will be secretly wishing for a Kerry loss so they can wail about that." For the next few days, of course, most fans will be reveling proudly, especially at a giant parade on Saturday that will wind from Fenway Park to City Hall and is expected to draw more than three million people, according to the mayor's office. And for some the victory can be seen as a harbinger of miracles to come, not just on the ball field. "Suddenly all things seem possible," said Samantha Power, a Pulitzer Prize-winning expert on genocide at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard. "For ordinary people who sort of thought, 'Maybe I'll never get that promotion,' maybe they think now anything can happen," Ms. Power said. But she also recognizes that she and many others will never feel quite the same about the Red Sox and about baseball. For example, this summer, when Ms. Power traveled to Sudan to learn about the killing in Darfur, she listened to most Red Sox games on the Major League Baseball Web site in the middle of the Sudanese night. Stopping for a night in Paris on her way back, she dashed to an Internet cafe in time to hear the eighth inning of the Red Sox playing the Yankees. "Would I next year go to an Internet cafe at 4 a.m. to listen to a Yankees-Red Sox game?" Ms. Power said. "I don't think so. The stakes of it just seemed higher because of the underdog role. It just felt bigger then." And as the writer and baseball aficionado David Halberstam said Thursday, "Some of the magic has probably been snatched away.'' Like the lunar eclipse that turned the moon red and then swallowed it up during the fateful game on Wednesday night, this Red Sox victory strikes some fans as a little supernatural. Everywhere, people are talking about feeling changed, about venturing into uncharted territory. Richard Berlin, who runs an insurance brokerage firm in Peabody, Mass., cast it in 12-step language. "It's just like the alcoholic who frees himself from the bonds of drink and says, 'Now I can figure out who I want to be,' " Mr. Berlin said. "We're the Red Sox Nation. Maybe we'll need to be the Prozac Nation, but I hope that's not the case." Many wonder whether fans will turn into unseemly braggarts, in particular taking the opportunity to lord it over Yankees fans as payback for years of pinstriped abuse. "A team that loses in some ways is going to be easier to identify with for most Americans than one that wins," Ms. Power said. "Are we going to become that which we can never imagine being? Are we winners now, and does that make us sort of less empathetic, less humble? That's what being on the other side of the jackboot for 86 years leaves people able to do. Yankee fans don't feel for what we've gone through. Are we going to become like them?" Mr. Epstein does not think the transformation will be too drastic. "With the first ball that goes under the third baseman's glove next year, all will be normal," he said. "It will still be the grumpiest city in America." Ms. Power sees a chance for a city to lighten up by removing its chip. "Maybe it will just become about a baseball rivalry instead of a humiliated city," she said. "It could make baseball less about the meaning of life and more about just baseball." And, she said, almost as if to reassure herself, "that wouldn't be such a bad thing." Katie Zezima contributed reporting for this article.

www.wilmingtonstar.com (North Carolina) 30 Oct 2004 Impacts of Greensboro massacre still debated after 25 years The buckshot pellets have remained inside Tom Clark's body for nearly 25 years. Clark and the other protesterss had gathered for a "Death to the Klan" rally organized by the Communist Workers Party. The Durham resident was strumming his guitar and singing "We Shall not be Moved" as he prepared for a protest march outside a public-housing community center in Greensboro on Nov. 3, 1979. Moments later, nine carrying Klansmen and neo-Nazis drove past in a line. There were shouts, scurrying, then sharp, sudden sounds and puffs of smoke. "I quickly assessed people were shooting guns, and I was carrying a guitar," Clark said. "And I better duck." He did, but not far enough to dodge a burst of buckshot. It wasn't serious. He didn't even realize he was shot until later. In a span of 88 seconds, four anti-Klan marchers were killed. Another would die of wounds in what some now call The Greensboro Massacre." "It was pretty traumatic," Clark said. Now, 25 years later, some feel the killings remain a festering sore in Greensboro. Others feel the city has put the event behind it. The shootings of that Saturday led to three court cases, at least three books, a "Frontline" television program, a play, the nonprofit Greensboro Justice Fund and, earlier this year, the formation of a "Truth and Reconciliation Commission" in Greensboro. "Was it worth it?" Clark said. "Im not sure." In November 1980, six Klansmen and Nazis were acquitted of five counts of murder. Four years later, five of those defendants and four other men were acquitted of federal civil-rights violations. But in 1985, in a civil suit brought by 16 shooting survivors, six Klansmen and Nazis and two Greensboro police officers were found liable for wrongful death. The city of Greensboro paid the plaintiffs $351,000, which went to establish the Greensboro Justice Fund. Survivors and their supporters maintain the Death to the Klan rally was meant to be a peaceful protest. To others, it was deliberate provocation. The Communist Workers Party had disrupted a Klan showing of the racist movie "Birth of a Nation" in July 1979 in China Grove. A statement announcing the Nov. 3 march included the wording, "We invite you - the Klan - and your two-bit punks to come out," and mentioned two organizers of the China Grove Klan rally by name. In the confrontation, the demonstrators attacked the cars in which Klansmen and Nazis arrived with sticks and fists. Both sides fired shots. "This is something that was brought to our community," said Greensboro City Councilman Tom Phillips. None of the Klansmen and Nazis were from Greensboro, and some of the march organizers were from Durham and other places. But one of the dead was Greensboro college student Sandi Smith. And some organizers were Greensboro activists - notably, Nelson Johnson, now an ordained Greensboro minister and the individual most responsible for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. "I'm the person on the ground here who played perhaps the leading role in conceptualizing and pushing for it," Johnson said. "To allow that history to inform us, to heal us." He is executive director of the Beloved Community Center in Greensboro which, with the Greensboro Justice Fund, is sponsoring a series of commemorative events for the massacres silver anniversary. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission is an outgrowth of the Truth and Reconciliation Project, which Johnson started to address what he saw as an "impediment." Former Durham City Councilwoman Cynthia Brown is among the seven appointed members of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. She was a student at Greensboro's Bennett College when the shootings occurred. The commission will examine circumstances that led to the shootings. "That event was a blight on the history of the city," Brown said. The commission can't heal the lingering wounds, she said, but can "lay the foundation" for improving communication and relations within Greensboro. Not everyone is so optimistic. "It's not necessary," said Phillips, the current Greensboro Councilman. "We need to move forward. All they want to do is rewrite history. The leader of the whole thing is the guy who started it off."See Greensboro Justice Fund www.gjf.org

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NYT 30 Oct 2004 Experts: Bin Laden Courting Young Arabs By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Filed at 6:21 p.m. ET CAIRO, Egypt (AP) -- Osama bin Laden's new videotape clearly targets American voters days before an extraordinarily tight presidential election, but also courts another constituency: young Arabs who are frustrated and disenchanted but not committed to radical Islam. Al-Qaida's leader already has extremists on his side, who made it clear in their remarks posted Saturday on Islamic Web sites that they were elated to see him looking healthy and in control of the cause. But analysts say he is trying to broaden his base and that his words were chosen for more secular young Muslims as well as Americans. In the tape, parts of which were aired Friday by the Arabic TV network Al-Jazeera, bin Laden dropped the usual religious rhetoric and historical references in favor of plain language. And he pointed to Israeli aggression as his inspiration for the Sept. 11 attacks on New York and Washington. U.S. policy in the Israeli-Palestinian issue drives frustration among many Arabs, from moderates to radicals. He struck a tone that was almost conciliatory -- though tinged with threat, telling the American people only four days before the election between President Bush and Sen. John Kerry that he wanted to explain why he ordered the Sept. 11 attacks so Americans can act to prevent a similar strike. Stop harming Muslims, he said, and an attack will be averted. ``Your security is not in the hands of Kerry, Bush or al-Qaida. Your security is in your own hands,'' bin Laden said. ``Americans' security is bound to the policy they adopt regardless of the winner.'' Bin Laden said his decision to sanction the Sept. 11 bombings was motivated by the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon, which he said sparked ``a strong feeling against injustice and a strong determination to punish the unjust.'' Bin Laden's language, tone and explanation are out of character with his past, more vehement remarks. Analysts warn he's not a changed man, just changing with circumstances. Lebanese writer and political analyst Saad Mehyo pointed to bin Laden's ``new look'' and said the tape reflected a ``high degree of sophistication, which clearly meant he was following the U.S. presidential elections campaign with special attention.'' ``All those accusations that al-Qaida is a petrified and closed terrorist group that belongs to the 11th century are not true,'' he said. Bin Laden and his followers ``are showing a degree of maturity and development in order to bring their cause into the mainstream of (Arab-Islamic) causes,'' Mehyo said. ``This is a very serious matter that should prompt us to stop and think.'' Biographers of the al-Qaida leader have noted he first showed anger at the Americans during the last phase of the Afghan war against Soviet troops, a war in which ``holy warriors'' like bin Laden and the United States were on the same side fighting communism. Bin Laden's first signs of anger followed a 1989 massacre of dozens of his supporters by the communist-led Afghani government, which he blamed on the Americans. But in the tape, bin Laden cites a cause more dear to all Arabs, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. ``He no longer needs to talk and address devout Muslims, they already support him,'' said Abdel Rahim Ali, an expert on radical Islamic groups and author of Alliance of Terror, Al Qaida Organization. ``What he wants is to enlarge the circle in order to mobilize more young Muslims among those who are not committed (to radical Islam). These young men feel deep frustration because of the daily Israeli practices and bin Laden is using their anger and frustration,'' Ali said. It was the first footage in more than a year of the fugitive al-Qaida leader, thought to be hiding in the mountains along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. Unlike in his previous tapes, a turbaned bin Laden, with a long, gray beard, was shown standing behind a lectern in white robe and golden cloak. His hands were steady, gesturing as he addressed the camera. Despite reaching out to more moderate Muslims, bin Laden isn't ignoring his core support among fundamentalists. On Islamic Web sites, where his followers post views and monitor al-Qaida's exploits, bin Laden's tape prompted excitement. ``God is Great, oh God bless our Sheik Osama and destroy the nation of infidels,'' wrote a person identifying himself as Abdel Fattah Ismail. Abdul Khaleq Abdulla, a political analyst in the United Arab Emirates and professor at Emirates University in al-Ain, said the changed style is no indication bin Laden has changed his fundamental views and that it won't bother his supporters to see their hero tone down his rhetoric. ``It was a surprise he was in good health; it was a surprise he was in control of his thoughts,'' Abdulla said. ``This will energize much of his followers."


AFP 29 Oct 2004 Attacks on foreigners in Afghanistan since the fall of the Taliban KABUL, Oct 29 (AFP) - The daylight abduction of three UN electoral workers in Kabul was the first kidnapping of foreigners in the Afghan capital since the Taliban's fall three years ago. They were snatched from their car in front of their office as the end of Afghanistan's presidential vote count was announced on Thursday. Five days earlier a purported Taliban suicide bomber killed an American woman and an Afghan girl and injured three Icelandic peacekeepers in Kabul. Here is a chronology of the major attacks against aid workers and foreigners in Afghanistan since the Taliban regime collapsed in December 2001. --2001-- Nov 19: An Australian cameraman, an Italian and a Spanish journalist, and an Afghan photographer are killed in an ambush near Jalalabad in eastern Afghanistan as they drive to Kabul. -- 2002 -- April 19: A French soldier is wounded in a gunfight with an unknown attacker at Kabul's international airport. Sept 1: A British International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) soldier is wounded in an explosion that kills an Afghan man near the former Soviet embassy. Dec 19: Three Afghans are killed in grenade attack on ISAF's Camp Warehouse base, including the attacker who was trying to enter the base. -- 2003 -- Mar 7: An Afghan ISAF translator is killed and a Dutch soldier wounded in a bomb attack as peacekeepers patrol southeast Kabul. Mar 27: Taliban militants shoot dead a Salvadoran-born Swiss delegate from the International Committee of the Red Cross in southcentral Afghanistan. Mar 29: Two US Special Operations Forces personnel are killed and another seriously injured in an ambush in southern Helmand province. April 8: An Italian tourist is shot dead by suspected Taliban in southern Zabul province. June 7: Four German ISAF soldiers are killed by suicide car bomber. Aug 14: Two Afghan workers with the Afghan Red Crescent Society are killed and three others injured in southeastern Ghazni province by suspected Taliban militants. Sept 10: Four Afghan employees of a Danish NGO assisting refugees are killed in an ambush in southeast Ghazni province, some 150 kilometres (93 miles) from Kabul. Oct 1: Two Canadian ISAF soldiers are killed when their car hits a landmine near their Camp Julien base in Kabul. Oct 30: A Turkish engineer is abducted while working on a road linking Kabul and Kandahar. He is released one month later. Nov 11: Three people injured by a car bomb outside UN offices in Kandahar. Nov 16: A Frenchwoman working for the UN refugee agency is shot dead in the centre of Ghazni city by two suspected Taliban. Dec 4: An Afghan census worker is killed and four others injured in an ambush by suspected Taliban in western Afghanistan. Dec 24: Two Indians are freed by Taliban militants after being kidnapped on December 6 in Zabul province while working on the Kabul-Kandahar road. -- 2004-- Jan 27: A Canadian ISAF peacekeeper is killed and three Canadian troops injured in a suicide bomb attack near their Camp Julien base in Kabul. Jan 28: A British peacekeeper is killed by a suicide bomber in Kabul. Feb 14: Four Afghans working for the local Organisation for Mine Clearance and Afghan Rehabilitation are shot dead in in western Farah province. Feb 22: Gunmen open fire on a civilian helicopter near southern Kandahar, killing its Australian pilot and wounding two other people. Feb 25: Five Afghans working for local NGO Sanayee Development Foundation are executed by gunmen in Surobi, a small town between Kabul and Jalalabad. March 5: A Turkish engineer is killed during an ambush on the Kabul-Kandahar road in southeastern Zabul province and another Turkish engineer is kidnapped. He is released three months later. March 6: Two gunmen shoot dead the head of the Afghan Red Crescent in southeastern Zabul province. April 26: Suspected Taliban shoot dead two Afghan employees of the Coordination of Humanitarian Assistance aid agency near Kandahar. May 5: Two Britons and an Afghan election worker are shot dead in eastern Nuristan province. May 9: A Swiss man and a Norwegian man, presumed tourists, are found apparently stabbed and stoned to death in a Kabul garden. May 23: A Norwegian peacekeeper is killed and another injured in a rocket-propelled grenade attack on their convoy. June 2: A Belgian woman, a Dutch man, a Norwegian man and two Afghans working for Medecins Sans Frontiers are shot dead in northwest Badghis province. June 10: Eleven Chinese nationals are killed in their sleep in an attack on their compound in northeastern Kunduz province. Oct 9: Three Afghan policemen and two Afghan soldiers are killed in separate polling day attacks in southeast Zabul province. Oct 14: Two US soldiers are killed and three wounded by a bomb in central Uruzgan province. Oct 18: An Afghan election worker and four other Afghans are killed when their election commission vehicle hits a roadside bomb in southeast Paktika province. Oct 21: Three US soldiers and their Afghan interpreter are injured in a roadside bomb attack in Paktika. Oct 23: An Afghan girl and an American woman are killed and three Icelandic peacekeepers injured by a suicide bomber on Kabul's famous "Chicken Street" shopping strip. Oct 28: A British-Irish woman, a Kosovor woman and a Filipino man are kidnapped in broad daylight from their UN-marked car by armed men wearing military-style camouflage jackets in front of a UN compound in Kabul.


BBC 16 Sept 2004 Teacher 'snips students' ears' A teacher in the northern Bangladeshi district of Bogra has been assaulted by angry relatives after he allegedly cut the ears of 17 students with scissors. Officials say the teacher defended his action as imposing class discipline. Abdul Mazid Sardar, worked at an Islamic school, and was angry because his pupils failed to learn religious verses, officials say. Parents and relatives say some of those cut by the scissors were aged between six and nine, and required stitches. "As the students were creating chaos I just wanted to scare them by showing the scissors," Mr Sardar told local journalists. "Probably at the time an evil force mounted on me." Sacked Officials say that Mr Sardar was only stopped from harming more pupils by other members of staff who heard the children's screams. They say that parents and relatives attacked the teacher, who has now been sacked. He is now being treated in a local hospital under police custody. The Islamic school was established just six months ago and had some 35 students, all aged between six and 10. It had only two teachers - Mr Sardar and the school's principal, Abdul Mannan.


AFP 19 Oct 2004 US official visits Bhutanese refugee camps in southeastern Nepal KATHMANDU, Oct 19 (AFP) - A senior US diplomat on Tuesday visited two major Bhutanese refugee camps in southeastern Nepal, the foreign ministry said. Arthur E. Dewey, Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees and Migration, visited the camps being run by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees at Beldangi in Jhapa district and Pathri in Morang district, a ministry spokesman said. Dewey also held talks with Nepalese Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Prakash Sharan Mahat on the refugee issue. "Mr. Dewey is trying to find some options for solutions to the refugee problem in Nepal," Mahat told reporters. Some 100,000 Bhutanese refugees, mostly Hindus of Nepalese origin, are staying in seven camps in southeast Nepal after leaving Bhutan in 1990 when the Buddhist kingdom launched cultural reforms encouraging the use of Bhutan's language and national dress. Talks between the Nepalese and Bhutanese governments on their repatriation have dragged on for years, with Bhutan insisting that a verification process be held to ensure that those being sent back are indeed refugees. Thimpu, which denies having an anti-Hindu agenda, had long contended that most of the refugees left voluntarily. But after criticism by the United States and some European countries, it agreed in October to take back 12,183 refugees. A registration process which began soon afterwards has been in limbo since December when Bhutanese officials were attacked at a camp. The crowd threw stones after the verification team told some 300 refugees they had to meet some conditions for repatriation, including proof they were not engaged in activities against Bhutan.


AP 5 Oct 2004 Khmer Rouge Trials May Start by 2005 By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Filed at 1:25 p.m. ET PHNOM PENH, Cambodia (AP) -- With the necessary laws approved, Cambodia could begin trying former leaders of the Khmer Rouge for genocide by the end of next year, a senior government official said Tuesday. Deputy Prime Minister Sok An also said about 10 former top members of the defunct communist group, which ruled Cambodia with an iron fist in the late 1970s, could face prosecution. He spoke after legislators approved laws Tuesday barring the Cambodian government from pardoning Khmer Rouge suspects. On Monday, they ratified a landmark U.N.-backed plan to set up a tribunal to prosecute the surviving leaders of the regime, believed responsible for the death of almost 2 million people. ``We have fulfilled this supreme task to seek justice for the victims and contribute to the cause of the entire humanity, which is to prevent the return of genocide,'' Sok An told reporters after the 96-2 vote. ``I cannot see anymore obstacles left,'' said Sok An, who served as Cambodia's chief negotiator with the United Nations. He added that he expected the tribunal to convene before the end of next year. Others wondered when or if justice would be done. ``I'm happy about the news, but I cannot yet put my heart to believe it will happen,'' said the 72-year-old Chum Mey, who survived being torture by the Khmer Rouge only to have his wife and child shot by them. Ratification of the tribunal pact came after more than six years of negotiations and delays. The agreement still needs the expected approval of Cambodia's Senate and head of state, and funding for the tribunal has yet to be secured. The Khmer Rouge are believed responsible for the deaths of at least 1.7 million of their countrymen from starvation, disease, overwork and execution. None of the regime's top leaders has been brought to justice. The movement's chief, Pol Pot, died in 1998. Several of his top lieutenants, aging and infirm, still live freely in Cambodia. Sok An told parliament that ``top leaders, in the range of about 10 people'' are targets for prosecution -- one of the few recent indications from the government on the proposed scope of the trial. He did not name them. Independent human rights experts have named about a dozen major figures they believe should be indicted by the tribunal, with some suggesting more should be prosecuted. Under the legislation passed Tuesday, the tribunal also would have the authority to retroactively decide on the scope of pardons granted before the tribunal law was adopted, in a measure apparently aimed at the 1996 pardon of Ieng Sary, the former Khmer Rouge foreign minister. Ieng Sary came into the government's good graces after leading a mass defection of rebel Khmer Rouge troops to the government side. It took five years of tough negotiations to reach agreement with the United Nations in June 2003. Then ratification was delayed, largely because the country had no functioning legislature during an 11-month political crisis that followed inconclusive elections in 2003. Some critics suggested the delays were meant to help Khmer Rouge leaders escape prosecution because many are past, present or potential political allies of current Prime Minister Hun Sen, who exercises virtually unchallenged control. ``This is long overdue but it remains to be seen if genuine trials will take place and if Cambodians will believe they are serious,'' said Brad Adams, director of the Asia division of New York-based Human Rights Watch. (AMs; incorporates BC-Cambodia-Tribunal Skeptics and corrects spelling of survivor, Chum sted Chem)

BBC 4 Oct 2004 Key figures in the Khmer Rouge Most of the remaining leaders are in their seventies After nearly six years of negotiations and delay, Cambodia's National Assembly has finally approved legislation to set up a genocide court to try former members of the Khmer Rouge. The agreement brings the surviving leaders of the brutal Maoist regime - many of whom are still living freely - a step closer to trial. The man most wanted for crimes against humanity in Cambodia will never be brought to justice. Pol Pot, the founder and unchallenged leader of the Khmer Rouge, died in a camp along the border with Thailand in 1998. But he left behind him several other senior figures who have been implicated in the genocide that took place during the Khmer Rouge's four-year regime. Two of these men are already in custody. Ta Mok, nicknamed "The Butcher", was the commander of the south-western region of Cambodia during the time of the Khmer Rouge. In 1997 he ousted Pol Pot and became the group's leader. Two years later he was captured next to the Thai border and charged with genocide. Now aged 78, he is jail in Phnom Penh. Kang Kek Ieu, more commonly known as Duch, is also in prison. Duch was the boss of Phnom Penh's notorious Tuol Sleng prison, where thousands of people were killed during the Khmer Rouge regime. Now aged 62, he is the youngest surviving member of the movement's leadership. Duch, who has since become a born-again Christian, is said to be eager for his chance to go to trial to tell his version of events. Escaping justice Other senior Khmer Rouge leaders are still at liberty. Two of the top names, Nuon Chea and Khieu Samphan, live in Pailin, once the movement's jungle headquarters. Pol Pot's regime is thought to have led to the deaths of 1.7m people Both men deny being involved in the atrocities that went on during the Khmer Rouge regime, but critics suggest that at the very least they were fully informed of what was happening. Nuon Chea was Pol Pot's second in command, and often referred to as "brother number two". He defected from the Khmer Rouge in 1998 and was granted a pardon by Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen. In December 2002 he was called to testify on behalf of the former Khmer Rouge general Sam Bith, who was sentenced to life in prison for ordering the kidnap and murder of three Western backpackers in 1994. Khieu Samphan, as the official head of state, was the public face of the Khmer Rouge. After defecting at the same time as Nuon Chea, the 73-year-old is now said to spend most of his time reading, listening to music or gardening in his Pailin home. Another former leader, Ieng Sary, may yet escape trial. Known as "Brother Number Three", Ieng Sary is Pol Pot's brother-in-law and served as minister of foreign affairs during the Khmer Rouge regime. He became the first senior leader to defect in 1996 - and as a result was granted a royal pardon. The United Nations says such a pardon cannot protect someone from prosecution, but Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen has previously warned that going after Ieng Sary could reignite civil unrest in Cambodia. Ieng Sary now lives in a luxury villa in Phnom Penh, as well as maintaining a home in Pailin. The 74-year-old is said to be ill with a heart condition, and travels to Bangkok regularly for treatment.

BBC 30 Oct 2004 Cambodian king addresses nation Cambodians know little about their new king Cambodia's new King Norodom Sihamoni has addressed his people for the first time and promised to be their "faithful and loyal servant". Tens of thousands of people descended on the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh to hear the new monarch speak. The former ballet dancer was enthroned on Friday, amid three days of glittering coronation celebrations. He has taken over from his father, King Norodom Sihanouk, who has bowed out after a reign of more than 60 years. "My father... told me the king is not the boss of the people. Instead, we must keep ourselves humble to the people to serve the interests of the nation," said King Sihamoni, speaking from a balcony, under a huge parasol. "I will always be with you, to share happiness and sadness together with you." Balloons and doves Correspondents described the atmosphere as festive, with balloons and white doves released into the air in celebration. Muted ceremony Pictures of coronation The crowd was made up mostly of military personnel, government employees and school children, said the BBC's Guy De Launey in Phnom Penh. Prime Minister Hun Sen paid tribute to King Sihamoni and his father. "The continuity of the constitutional monarchy is a key to the stability of the kingdom of Cambodia," he said. Little is known about the new king, aged 51, who has spent much of his life outside Cambodia - as a ballet dancer and teacher, as well as Cambodia's ambassador to the UN cultural agency, Unesco. So curious were some of the crowd to get a glimpse of him on Saturday, they broke through a blockade before being ushered back, the Associated Press reported. "I've seen the face of the old king many times already, but now I want to see the face of the new one," said Chea Uorn, 79, who had travelled 80km (50 miles) to attend the ceremony. Lone protester One of Sihamoni's potential strengths is that he is seen as apolitical. However, that did not stop one lone protester from slipping through a security cordon to parade a banner saying "Evil China" in front of the new king, whose father had close ties with Beijing. Profile of King Sihamoni The succession process began earlier this month, when former King Sihanouk abdicated due to ill health. There was no legal provision in the event of a monarch's abdication, and laws had to be rushed through parliament to enable a throne council to convene and choose a successor. While Cambodian kings used to have great authority, the position is now largely symbolic, but it remains an important post because of the reverence Cambodian people give to the royal family.


washingtonpost.com 3 Oct 2004 Violence Kills 46 In India's Northeast Attacks Highlight Separatist Threat By John Lancaster Washington Post Foreign Service Sunday, October 3, 2004; Page A28 NEW DELHI, Oct. 2 -- A wave of bombings and shootings killed 46 people Saturday in two states in India's remote and turbulent northeast, authorities said, underscoring the continued threat from separatist groups that have battled the government for decades. The highest death toll was recorded in the town of Dimapur in the state of Nagaland, where near-simultaneous bombings on a crowded railroad platform and in a marketplace killed 26 people and wounded scores of others. Meanwhile, in the state of Assam, separate bombings and shootings killed at least 20 people, including 11 who died when gunmen opened fire on a crowded marketplace in a small town near the border with Bangladesh. Police blamed the massacre on tribal guerrillas fighting for an independent homeland in Assam. There was no indication of a link between the attacks in the two states, and no one immediately asserted responsibility for the bloodshed. But it came as a sharp reminder of the challenge posed by armed separatist groups that accuse the government of plundering the region's natural resources while doing little to help its people. The attack in Nagaland, on the border with Burma, was the deadliest since the main rebel group in the state agreed to a cease-fire in 1997. The state's Naga tribe is predominantly Christian and many members feel little connection with mostly Hindu India. Naga rebels launched India's oldest insurgency almost half a century ago and have successfully prevented the government from opening the oil-rich region to energy development. Janardhan Singh, the police superintendent in Dimapur, said the Nagaland bombings appeared to be intended to undermine peace negotiations with the rebels, Reuters news agency reported. The bomb in the railway station, which was crowded at the time, was so powerful that it blew the roof off the station platform and hurled some victims to the tracks, according to witnesses. "There are pieces of flesh and torn human limbs lying on the platform," Yangar Thakkar, a journalist in Dimapur, told Reuters. Almost simultaneously, a powerful blast ripped through a crowded marketplace in the same town. In combination, the two blasts killed 26 people and injured 84, Nagaland's chief minister, Neiphiu Rio, told the Associated Press. Within hours, neighboring Assam was rocked by a series of attacks, including the marketplace massacre and five bombings in other parts of the state. The town of Boingagoan was hit by two simultaneous explosions, one of which killed two people. Several separatist groups are fighting for an independent homeland in Assam, a hilly, forested region known for its tea plantations and mineral deposits. In August, a powerful bomb killed at least 16 people, many of them schoolchildren, as they assembled for an Independence Day parade on the grounds of a college in Assam. India's home minister, Shivraj Patil, told India's private NDTV television that he would fly to Nagaland on Sunday to assess the situation. "The blast was very big," he said. "For seven years, Nagaland had experienced peace. This kind of thing had not happened. We shall have to see who is involved in it."

NYT 17 Oct 2004 Indian Muslims' Hope Is One Good Policewoman By AMY WALDMAN Correction Appended KALOL, India - So indecent was his younger brother's death that Idris Yusuf Ghodawala never imagined the indignity that was to follow. On March 1, 2002, as Hindu-Muslim riots convulsed the state of Gujarat, a Hindu mob armed with shiny new swords set upon Imran Ghodawala, an 18-year-old Muslim, dragged him into the Rabbani mosque and burned him to death. Idris, hiding on a balcony next door, saw the attack and then the smoke billowing from the mosque. When Idris Ghodawala went to the police to claim Imran's remains, he said the top local police officer, a Hindu named R. J. Patil, told him there were no remains to claim. Mr. Patil had burned them, knowing full well that Muslims, unlike Hindus, bury their dead. The sacrilege still makes Mr. Ghodawala, 31, weep. "We are Muslims, and they burned our body," he said. Mr. Patil's action appears to have been part of a broader effort to conceal evidence and thwart prosecutions after the riots in Gujarat state, which left at least 1,100 Muslims dead and up to 600 missing. Mr. Ghodawala could name four members of the mob that killed his brother, two of whom he had played cricket with as a child. But he said Mr. Patil refused to let him name names, or even file a complaint. So Mr. Ghodawala's case essentially disappeared, as did thousands of others stemming from the riots. In a state controlled by Hindu nationalists, the police either refused to register the names of the accused or simply summarily closed cases; prosecutors did not oppose bail for suspects, and judges delivered acquittals in cases where dozens of people died. Only a small number of Hindus have been convicted for any action in the riots, although the Supreme Court has now intervened to force more than 2,000 cases that had been closed to be re-examined and at least two retried. What happened in this area was typical except in one respect. Late last year, Neeraja Gotru Rao, a policewoman of uncommon courage, arrived here after being sent by the state police to reinvestigate the cases. Her work led to the arrests of about 30 suspects, including the personal assistant to a state government minister. It also led to the arrest of Mr. Patil on suspicion of destroying evidence by burning the remains of Imran Ghodawala and at least 12 other Muslims. The fate of these two police officers, whose interpretation of duty so diverged, will test more than whether justice will be done in the riots, which were set off by the immolation on Feb. 27, 2002, of 59 Hindus in a train carriage. It may also determine whether Muslims here can once again believe in the impartiality of the Indian state. On a recent afternoon, the corpulent Mr. Patil was found not in jail, but sipping tea in his pajamas in the local government hospital. The minister's personal assistant and another well-connected accused person - all three ostensibly under arrest - were with him. Pleading illness, they were seeking bail from the comfort of the hospital. Ms. Rao, meanwhile, was back in Ahmedabad, having been ordered by the Gujarat state police to wrap up her unfinished work. She is not granting interviews, but victims and their advocates say the order is another effort to thwart prosecutions. "She was removed because she was doing good work," Mr. Ghodawala said. "And because she said she would try to find out who were the superior officers who gave the orders. Now I don't think anybody will take up this case." The director general of the Gujarat police says Ms. Rao, who is Hindu, was taking too long with her work, and that her investigation was finished. The rioting lasted for weeks, but was most ferocious in the first few days. Sixty-eight Muslims died in this area, many of them from Delol, a village nearby. Muslims died in the village and the surrounding fields, where Yaqub Adam, a tailor, saw his father, mother, uncle, cousin, nephew and two other relatives killed. "Their only work in those days was to find the Muslims, kill them and burn them," Mr. Adam, 40, said. Eleven more Muslims died next to the Ambika Society housing colony, when the truck in which they were trying to flee ran straight into a Hindu mob. "Nobody came to save us," said Medina Yaqub Sheikh, who said she saw her husband hacked by a sword, then set on fire. One young woman said she was raped by five men. More Muslims died at Derol station, and 17 more fleeing rioters at the Goma River. Two small boys were reportedly thrown on a fire, then when they crawled off, thrown on again. In Kalol, where about one-fourth of the 20,000 residents are Muslim, 165 Muslim properties and vehicles were looted and burned. One Muslim man, injured in the police firing, was burned to death in the hospital compound. Imran Ghodawala was burned to death in the mosque. If each killing had its horrific particularity, the aftermath was strikingly similar. Victims and witnesses went to the local police station, controlled by Mr. Patil, to register complaints and claim their dead. Survivors said Mr. Patil refused to let them file complaints, saying he would write what needed to be written. In the end, he wrote a single complaint bunching all the killings together and not listing the suspects whom witnesses had named. Survivors of the Ambika Society massacre said he told them that he had burned the remains of their loved ones. When Mr. Ghodawala sought a certificate proving his brother's death so his family could get compensation from the state, he said the police told him that if he named names his family would get no money. He would see his brother's killers in town, but was powerless, he said, tears flowing again. "If we chase them we cannot live here, we cannot work here," he said. "We do not have anybody to help." That changed when Ms. Rao arrived at the end of last year. The state police had dispatched her to investigate the killings and rape at the Ambika Society after pressure from human rights and women's groups and the Supreme Court. She set up shop in a separate room at the Kalol police station, and victims began coming to see her. They found a woman, about 35, in a police uniform, with short hair, small glasses, a strong build and a soft voice. She listened with compassion, and spoke with affection. Medina Yaqub Sheikh is illiterate, but as she recounted how her husband died, she knew it mattered that Ms. Rao took notes. "Earlier when we used to talk to the police they never used to write," Ms. Sheikh said. As word spread about Ms. Rao, more victims began visiting her. Idris Ghodawala told her of his brother's killing. She visited the scene, photographing the spot, still preserved in the mosque, where his brother had burned. "She used to encourage us: 'Don't be afraid of anybody,' " Mr. Ghodawala said. Yaqub Adam told her of his family's deaths. "No one knew about this case because it was never reported," he said. "Because of R. J. Patil, nothing came on the surface." Ms. Rao worked as late as midnight and avoided talking to witnesses in front of the local police, bringing her own staff to write affidavits. "She wanted that whatever injustice happened to us, at the end of the day we should get justice," said the young woman who had been gang-raped. Local Hindus looked on her less favorably. "Neeraja Rao used to call people and they would be sitting all day in her office," huffed Tushat Patel, a town official. "She was very tough." By the time she was taken off the investigation, 22 Delol men had been arrested. So had at least three of the four men Idris Ghodawala had named in his brother's killing, although they are free on bail. One of them, Ajay Soni, a lecturer and member of the Association of National Volunteers, India's most powerful Hindu nationalist organization, called the charge fabricated. "This is all political," he said. "The minority cannot rule this country. This will not go any further." Mr. Patil denied any wrongdoing as well. "All the senior officers knew what was the situation at the time," he said from his hospital bed. For now, whether he was a renegade or following orders from superiors will remain unanswered since Ms. Rao is no longer here to pursue it. Not a single Muslim has returned to live in Delol. Instead, they live in a ready-made ghetto, a colony built for them on the edge of Kalol by an Islamic relief organization. The houses are filled with widows and absence. The young woman who said she was raped said she also lost her father, brother and husband - every male member of her household. She said she is still too fearful to go to town on her own, where her rapists wander free on bail. She and the other victims want Ms. Rao back. "We had complete confidence in her, and we were getting justice through her," said Ms. Sheikh. "Now we are not sure." In trusting Ms. Rao, the victims went out on a limb. Now, they say, it has been snapped beneath them. Idris Ghodawala said he again sees no hope for justice, and he feels more threatened than ever. When he crosses paths with those who were arrested in the killing of his brother, he said, "It is I who try to hide, not them." For the Record - Oct. 18, 2004 An article yesterday about an effort by Muslims in the Indian state of Gujarat to obtain justice after riots against them in March 2002 gave an incorrect name in some copies for a policewoman whose work led to arrests in the case. She is Neeraja Gotru Rao; her surname is Rao.

Reuters 27 Oct 2004 Survivor recognises accused in India massacre case BOMBAY, Oct 27 (Reuters) - A survivor of a massacre during Hindu-Muslim riots in India in 2002 told a court on Wednesday he recognised seven men from the night of the attack accused of killing 14 people by hacking or burning them to death. The violence in the western state of Gujarat was among India's worst religious bloodshed since independence in 1947. Rights groups say about 2,500 people, most of them Muslims, were killed in several days of bloodshed after a suspected Muslim mob set fire to a train, burning alive 59 Hindu pilgrims. Taufel Ahmed Sheikh, who survived an attack by a Hindu mob in the bakery where he worked, told a packed Bombay court during a retrial of the case that some his colleagues died, "assaulted with swords." The victims included three women and four children in what is known as the Best Bakery case after the Muslim-run bakery in Gujarat's Baroda city. It is the most high-profile case to come to court in the aftermath of the Gujarat riots. Sheikh said he and other employees escaped to a terrace when the bakery was set on fire. Hundreds of attackers gathered below and urged them to climb down, promising not to harm them. When they did, "they tied our hands and legs and we were beaten. They put wooden sticks on our bodies, poured kerosene and set us on fire," he said. Sheikh then pointed at seven of the accused men standing in a row in the tightly guarded court room and said he had seen them at the time of the attack. "I saw him holding a weapon," he said pointing at one of the accused, without giving details. RETRIAL The court in Bombay last month laid fresh criminal charges against 16 men who had earlier been acquitted of murder by a Gujarat court, in what was seen as an attempt to ensure justice for the victims. It later indicted one more man for the crime. The accused were charged with at least 18 offences including murder, rioting, burglary, possessing deadly weapons and using explosives in a case that has become symbolic of the failure to win any major convictions over the riots. The 17 accused men have pleaded not guilty to the charges. If convicted, they could face the death penalty or life in jail. Four more suspects, who are at large, are wanted in connection with the case, which was moved from Gujarat to neighbouring Maharashtra state, where Bombay is located, by India's Supreme Court. The court ordered a retrial after the chief witness, Zahira Sheikh, said she had been intimidated into recanting her evidence in the first trial, leading to the acquittal of the accused men. She is not related to Teufel Ahmed Sheikh.


East Timor Action Network 19 Oct 2004 ETAN urges new Indonesian president to pursue justice for victims of East Timor's occupation On the eve of retired General Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's inauguration, the East Timor Action Network (ETAN) today urged Indonesia's new president to actively pursue justice for crimes committed by Indonesian security forces in East Timor. "The East Timor Action Network congratulates the people of Indonesia for their remarkable series of elections and urges President Yudhoyono to make a priority of justice and human rights protection," said John M. Miller, spokesperson for ETAN. "The new Indonesian administration's efforts toward justice for East Timor will be viewed as a litmus test by all those who care about human rights, accountability and democracy," said Miller. "The international community will be watching closely to see whether President Yudhoyono sets aside his military loyalties to pursue genuine reconciliation and justice for the people of East Timor." "One key indicator will be Indonesia's attitude toward the commission of experts, which UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan is expected to appoint soon," said Miller. The commission will examine the two existing processes to prosecute serious crimes committed in East Timor in 1999 and propose next steps. "The U.S. Congress continues to view the lack of accountability for crimes against humanity and war crimes committed in East Timor as a key reason for restricting military assistance to Indonesia," said Karen Orenstein, Washington Coordinator for ETAN. "President Yudhoyono should heed regular calls by Congress for Indonesia to cooperate with the UN-mandated serious crimes process in East Timor." "The continued restriction of U.S. military aid sends an important signal to the new Indonesian government that Congress believes military reform is vital to democratic progress in Indonesia," continued Orenstein. ETAN advocates for democracy, justice and human rights for East Timor and Indonesia. ETAN calls for an international tribunal to prosecute crimes against humanity that took place in East Timor since 1975 and continued restrictions on U.S. military assistance to Indonesia until there is genuine reform of its armed forces. See www.etan.org for more information. Background Indonesia set up an ad hoc human rights court in early 2000 to deflect calls for an international tribunal in response to the Indonesian military's 1999 campaign of terror in East Timor. While six of the 18 people tried were convicted, only the convictions of the two East Timorese tried have been upheld on appeal. The UN Security Council mandated the establishment of the Serious Crimes Unit (SCU) to conduct investigations and prepare indictments to assist in bringing to justice those responsible for crimes against humanity and other serious crimes committed in East Timor in 1999. It also created the Special Panels to hear serious crimes cases. More than two-thirds of those indicted in East Timor currently reside in Indonesia. A number of indicted senior military and police officials and militia are active in military operations in Aceh and West Papua. In September, the U.S. Senate agreed to continue restrictions on Foreign Military Financing (FMF) grants and loans for weapons and other military equipment and training, pending cooperation with SCU, including the extradition of those indicted. Additional conditions call for military budget transparency; U.S. certification that the armed forces are "not committing gross violations of human rights;" and that the government is prosecuting members of the armed forces accused of abuses or aiding militia groups and punishing of those guilty of such acts. Last week, departing U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia Ralph Boyce said that he was disappointed that U.S.-Indonesia military relations remain restricted due to Jakarta's failure to improve its human rights record. "After three years we have not in fact substantively changed our relationship with (the Indonesian Armed Forces) all that much because the much-touted East Timor ad hoc trials on human rights violations didn't produce anything," Boyce said. Citing "grave concerns over the prospects for real military reforms," 45 members of the U.S. Congress recently called possible State Department plans to provide FMF for Indonesia in 2006 "premature, unwarranted, and unwise." Representatives of more than 70 U.S. organizations wrote to Secretary of State Colin Powell in September opposing Bush administration plans to expand military assistance to the Indonesian military. Additional background on Yudhoyono can be found at http://www.etan.org/news/2004/09elect.htm


Reuters 12 Oct 2004 Investigators unearth clues to convict Saddam Tue October 12, 2004 05:20 PM ET HATRA, Iraq (Reuters) - Investigators have conducted their first scientific exhumation of Iraq's "killing fields", discovering hundreds of bodies which they hope will help convict Saddam Hussein of crimes against humanity. They say nine trenches in a dry, dusty riverbed at the Hatra site in northern Iraq contain at least 300 bodies, and possibly thousands, including unborn babies and toddlers still clutching toys. "It is my personal opinion that this is a killing field," said Greg Kehoe, a U.S. lawyer appointed by the White House to work with the Iraqi Special Tribunal. "Someone used this field on significant occasions over time to take bodies up there, and to take people up there and execute them. "I've been doing grave sites for a long time, but I've never seen anything like this, women and children executed for no apparent reason," added Kehoe, who spent five years in the Balkans. "It's a perfect place for execution." The victims are believed to be minority Kurds killed during 1987-88. One trench contains only women and children, apparently killed by small arms. Another contains only men, apparently killed by automatic gunfire. Kehoe said the women and children had been taken from their villages with their belongings, including pots and pans, shot -- often in the back of the head -- then bulldozed into the trench. Some of the mothers died still holding their children. One young boy still held a ball in his tiny arms. A thick stench hangs over the site, as well as at a makeshift morgue nearby. "The youngest foetus we have was 18 to 20 foetal weeks. Tiny bones, femurs, thighbones the size of a matchstick," says investigating anthropologist P. Willey, of California. KURDISH GENOCIDE? International organisations estimate more than 300,000 people died under Saddam's 24-year rule and Iraq's Human Rights ministry has identified 40 possible mass graves countrywide. Authorities hope careful investigations of the sites will provide enough evidence to convict Saddam and other senior members of his regime, now in U.S. detention, of crimes against humanity. Investigators have excavated smaller mass graves before but never, they say, with such a methodical and forensic focus, aimed at gathering indisputable evidence of who was responsible. Ahead of Wednesday's expected completion of digging at Hatra, investigators took a pool reporter to the scene, who provided details for Reuters and other media. "We're trying to meet international standards that have been accepted by courts throughout the world," Kehoe said. "That's our benchmark. One of the reasons why we're going to stop digging now is because we have a lot of work to do back at the morgue. "That takes time. We're putting a package together on each body removed -- pictures of bones, clothes, a forensic report." Saddam is expected to face trial for crimes against humanity next year, but no timetable or details of the charges have yet been announced. Investigators are still pursuing evidence. During his reign, Saddam pushed hundreds of thousands of Arabs into Kurdish areas to force the locals out. He is accused of widespread abuses against the Kurds, including the "Anfal" (The Spoils) campaign in 1988, during which thousands died in a mustard gas attack. Human Rights Watch estimates that more than 50,000 Kurds were killed during the campaign. "Genocide is the attempt to eliminate, limit or exterminate a religious ethnic national or racial group," said Kehoe. "The Kurds are clearly a different nationality. So could it be considered genocide? It could be. "Killing, ethnic cleansing, property relocations, all of those were used to try to limit the Kurdish population. What it is, fundamentally, is downright murder. "Everybody said 'never again' after the Holocaust. The world wasn't listening. That's how it happened again and again and again."

BBC 13 Oct 2004 Babies found in Iraqi mass grave A US investigator said bodies were bulldozed into the graves A mass grave being excavated in a north Iraqi village has yielded evidence that Iraqi forces executed women and children under Saddam Hussein. US-led investigators have located nine trenches in Hatra containing hundreds of bodies believed to be Kurds killed during the repression of the 1980s. The skeletons of unborn babies and toddlers clutching toys are being unearthed, the Investigators said. They are seeking evidence to try Saddam Hussein for crimes against humanity. Tiny bones, femurs - thighbones the size of a matchstick P Willey US investigating anthropologist It is believed to be the first time investigators working for the Iraqi Special Tribunal (IST) have conducted a full scientific exhumation of a mass grave. "It is my personal opinion that this is a killing field," Greg Kehoe, an American working with the IST, told reporters in Hatra, south of the city of Mosul. "Someone used this field on significant occasions over time to take bodies up there, and to take people up there and execute them." Tiny bones The victims are believed to be Kurds killed in 1987-88, their bodies bulldozed into the graves after being summarily shot dead. Iraq's Kurds are hoping for justice at last One trench contains only women and children while another contains only men. The body of one woman was found still clutching a baby. The infant had been shot in the back of the head and the woman in the face. "The youngest foetus we have was 18 to 20 foetal weeks," said US investigating anthropologist P Willey. "Tiny bones, femurs - thighbones the size of a matchstick." Mr Kehoe investigated mass graves in the Balkans for five years but those burials mainly involved men of fighting age and the Iraqi finds were quite different, he said. "I've been doing grave sites for a long time, but I've never seen anything like this, women and children executed for no apparent reason," he said. Long search Mr Kehoe said that work to uncover graves around Iraq, where about 300,000 people are thought to have been killed during Saddam Hussein's regime, was slow as experienced European investigators were not taking part. The Europeans, he said, were staying away as the evidence might be used eventually to put Saddam Hussein to death. "We're trying to meet international standards that have been accepted by courts throughout the world," he added. "We're putting a package together on each body removed - pictures of bones, clothes, a forensic report." Iraq's human rights ministry has reportedly identified 40 possible mass graves across the country. The dig at Hatra, where a makeshift morgue has been erected, is due to be completed on Wednesday.

AFP 25 Oct 2004 Al-Zarqawi group claims killing of 50 Iraqi cadets: website DUBAI : An Islamist website on Sunday published a statement attributed to the extremist group led by Abu Mussab al-Zarqawi which claimed it carried out the massacre of almost 50 Iraqi cadets close to Baquba, north of Baghdad. "Some children of the "The Al-Qaeda Group of Jihad in the Country of Two Rivers (Iraq)" have succeeded in killing 48 corrupt heads, members of ... the Iraqi guard," said the statement, published on the Islamist website(wwww.ansarnet.ws/vb). It was not possible to verify the authenticity of the statement. The Zarqawi group, formerly known as Al-Tawhid wal Jihad (Unity and Holy War) announced its name change on another Islamist website at the weekend, apparently to show its allegiance to the Al-Qaeda network of Osama bin Laden. It was also not possible to verify the origin of that statement. In the claim for the killing, which took place on Saturday and was discovered early on Sunday, the website statement said: "The band was coming out of Karkush base, between the towns of Baladruz and Mandali, in the east of the country, and going on holiday in the south" of Iraq. The unarmed new Iraqi soldiers were found dead beside a remote road after being killed while returning home from their final training course. Many of the bodies were found laid out along the roadside with a single bullet in the head in one of the deadliest attacks against Iraq's fledgling security forces, which have become a major target of insurgent groups. "The bodies of 37 new recruits, some with their hands tied, were found, shot dead, on the side of the road, while the corpses of 12 others were found in a minibus a few metres away that had been burnt out," said a spokesman for the interior ministry, Colonel Adnan Abdul Rahman. "The recruits, who came from all over the southern provinces of Iraq, were mainly Shiite and were returning home on board three buses when they were ambushed in Diyala province," he told AFP. The attack happened on Saturday afternoon after the recruits completed a training course on a base outside the town of Mandali in eastern Iraq, Mandali's Iraqi national guard commander Ali al-Kaaki said. He put the toll at 48, but his figure included five civilians who were drivers. "We found the dead lying face down by the roadside with a single bullet wound to the head," Kaaki said, adding that the recruits were wearing civilian clothing and were unarmed at the time of the attack," he added. -

Reuters 26 Oct 2004 Iraq PM Blames U.S.-Led Forces' 'Neglect' for Massacre By Lin Noueihed BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraqi interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi said Tuesday "major neglect" by U.S.-led forces led to the murder of 49 Iraqi army recruits by insurgents this weekend. "There was an ugly crime in which a large group of National Guards were martyred," he told Iraq's national assembly. "We believe this issue was the outcome of major neglect by some parts of the multinational (forces)." He did not explain. Al Qaeda ally Abu Musab al-Zarqawi claimed responsibility on Sunday for the killing of the unarmed Iraqi soldiers who were dressed in civilian clothes and on their way home on leave. The recruits were killed with shots to the head by guerrillas posing as police at a checkpoint. A spokesman for the U.S.-led forces in Iraq said only "terrorists" were to blame. "This was a cold-blooded and systematic massacre by terrorists. They and no one else, must be held fully accountable for these heinous acts," he told Reuters by e-mail. "The Iraqi interim government is investigating this tragic incident. We will provide full support and cooperation to establish the facts and avoid repetition of similar events." Allawi said he had ordered an investigation into the cause of the attack, one of the bloodiest yet against the country's fledgling security forces. A source from his office told Reuters Monday the government was probing whether the attackers had inside information on the movements of the victims and why they had no weapons or armed escort. A senior Iraqi security source said it appeared the soldiers, based at Kirkush, 55 miles northeast of Baghdad, were ambushed by a large well-organized source with good intelligence. The killings were a major blow to the interim government, which is trying to show its security forces will be able ensure elections scheduled for January can go ahead.

AFP 27 Oct 2004 US downplays Allawi charge after massacre of recruits in Iraq AFP: 10/27/2004 WASHINGTON, Oct 27 (AFP) - The United States downplayed Wednesday interim Iraqi prime minister Iyad Allawi's charge of "negligence" by members of the multinational force in Iraq after 49 recruits for Iraq's new army were massacred. The State Department said that according to Allawi aides the Iraqi interim government was not referring to anyone in particular and saw terrorists alone as being to blame. "Let's put the blame where the blame belongs. That's not on the coalition forces or on Prime Minister Allawi. The blame is squarely on those who did this, these murderers, these terrorists," Secretary of State Colin Powell said on CNBC. "Now, we have to look in to see whether or not there were some lapses in security, but I think it's premature to blame anyone for this other than the terrorists who committed the act." In one of the worst strikes against the country's fledgling security forces, 49 army recruits and three drivers were shot dead on Saturday as they traveled home after completing a training course in eastern Iraq. "I think it was because of gross negligence by some elements within the multinational forces," Allawi said about the ambush, without giving details. "The killings represent the epitome of what could be done to hurt Iraq and the Iraqi people," he told the interim parliament, adding that a special investigation had been launched. State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said "they weren't trying to assign any blame to the United States or US forces. And in fact the matter is still under investigation. So I think we've seen that further explanation from his national security adviser about the quotes. "We could certainly understand what a trying and difficult experience this event was for the people involved and for the Iraqi government, and I'm sure they will try to get to the bottom of it and figure out what factors might have led to the events," said Boucher. "And that matter is still under investigation."

Reuters 28 Oct 2004 Civilian death toll in Iraq exceeds 100,000 Thu Oct 28, 2004 03:14 PM ET By Patricia Reaney LONDON (Reuters) - Tens of thousands of Iraqis have been killed in violence since the U.S.-led invasion last year, American public health experts have calculated in a report that estimates there were 100,000 "excess deaths" in 18 months. The rise in the death rate was mainly due to violence and much of it was caused by U.S. air strikes on towns and cities. "Making conservative assumptions, we think that about 100,000 excess deaths, or more have happened since the 2003 invasion of Iraq," said Les Roberts of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in a report published online by The Lancet medical journal. "The use of air power in areas with lots of civilians appears to be killing a lot of women and children," Roberts told Reuters. The report came just days before the U.S. presidential election in which the Iraq war has been a major issue. Mortality was already high in Iraq before the war because of United Nations sanctions blocking food and medical imports but the researchers described what they found as shocking. The new figures are based on surveys done by the researchers in Iraq in September 2004. They compared Iraqi deaths during 14.6 months before the invasion in March 2003 and the 17.8 months after it by conducting household surveys in randomly selected neighbourhoods. Previous estimates based on think tank and media sources put the Iraqi civilian death toll at up to 16,053 and military fatalities as high as 6,370. By comparison about 849 U.S. military were killed in combat or attacks and another 258 died in accidents or incidents not related to fighting, according to the Pentagon. VERY BAD FOR IRAQI CIVILIANS The researchers blamed air strikes for many of the deaths. "What we have evidence of is the use of air power in populated urban areas and the bad consequences of it," Roberts said. Gilbert Burnham, who collaborated on the research, said U.S. military action in Iraq was "very bad for Iraqi civilians". "We were not expecting the level of deaths from violence that we found in this study and we hope this will lead to some serious discussions of how military and political aims can be achieved in a way that is not so detrimental to civilians populations," he told Reuters in an interview. The researchers did 33 cluster surveys of 30 households each, recording the date, circumstances and cause of deaths. They found that the risk of death from violence in the period after the invasion was 58 times higher than before the war. Before the war the major causes of death were heart attacks, chronic disorders and accidents. That changed after the war. Two-thirds of violent deaths in the study were reported in Falluja, the insurgent held city 50 km (32 miles) west of Baghdad which had been repeatedly hit by U.S. air strikes. "Our results need further verification and should lead to changes to reduce non-combatant deaths from air strikes," Roberts added in the study. Richard Horton, editor of The Lancet, said the research which was submitted to the journal earlier this month had been peer-reviewed, edited and fast-tracked for publication because of its importance in the evolving security situation in Iraq. "But these findings also raise questions for those far removed from Iraq -- in the governments of the countries responsible for launching a pre-emptive war," Horton said in an editorial. See http://www.thelancet.com/journal/vol364/iss9445/early_online_publication, www.jhsph.edu, and www.iraqbodycount.net

AFP 28 Oct 2004 100,000 civilians have died from Iraq War and aftermath: Lancet PARIS, Oct 28 (AFP) - Around 100,000 Iraqi civilians have died as a result of the March 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq, more than half of them from violence, according to an estimate to be published on Friday by the British medical weekly The Lancet. The research, based on interviews among Iraqi households and an extrapolation of the data, was led by experts from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, in the US state of Maryland. "Making conservative assumptions, we think that about 100,000 excess deaths or more have happened since the 2003 invasion of Iraq," the authors said. "Violence accounted for most of the excess deaths and air strikes from coalition forces accounted for most violent deaths." Their figure is based on data from 988 households from 33 randomly-selected neighbourhoods in Iraq. Families were asked to give the number of deaths since January 2002, the date and cause and, if a violent death was involved, the circumstances. The mortality rates for the 14.6 months before the invasion were then compared with those for the 17.8 months after it, and a nationwide estimate was then extrapolated. The 988 households, comprising 7,868 residents, were visited between September 8 and 20 2004. Five of the households refused to be interviewed. In the period before the invasion, the interviewed households had 275 births and 46 deaths, most of them caused by heart attack, stroke and chronic illness. Only one occurred from violence. In the period afterwards, there were 366 births and 142 deaths, 73 of them -- 51 percent -- from violence. Heart attack, stroke, neonatal death and infectious disease were the other significant causes. Twenty-one of the deaths occurred among children younger than a year old. The sample used for the study is small by the standards of epidemiology, the discipline of using statistics to estimate the prevalence of mortality or sickness. The authors themselves acknowledge that the sampling strategy "might not have captured the overall mortality experience in Iraq." And, they say, it is possible that "many of the Iraqis" reported to have been killed by the US forces could have been combattants. Of 61 killings attributed to the US forces by the interviewees, 28 involved men aged 15-60, 28 were children younger than 15, four were women and one was a man. The study was led by Les Roberts of the school's Center for International Emergency Disaster Studies and included two specialists in community medicine at the Al-Mustansiriya University in Baghdad. Fifty-two of the 73 reported deaths from violence occurred in a cluster around the Sunni bastion of Fallujah, where US forces have waged fierce battles with rebels. If Fallujah is stripped out of the calculations, the overall estimate for the civilian tally nationwide comes to just under 100,000, at 98,000. If it is included, the death toll would rise around 200,000, although the researchers stress that there is "substantial... uncertainty" in making a projection of that kind. "Our results need further verification and should lead to changes to reduce non-combatant deaths from air strikes," the authors add. The study will be published online Friday by the London-based Lancet. Its editor, Richard Horton, acknowledged in a commentary that "certain limitations were inevitable and need to be acknowledged right away," but said that despite these flaws, the data and the analysis had been approved in a fast-track peer assessment by other experts in the field. In the circumstances of warfare, scientific data is rare and precious but analysis is invariably hedged with uncertainties, he said.

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health 28 Oct 2004 Iraqi civilian deaths increase dramatically after invasion Civilian deaths have risen dramatically in Iraq since the country was invaded in March 2003, according to a survey conducted by researchers from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Columbia University School of Nursing and Al-Mustansiriya University in Baghdad. The researchers found that the majority of deaths were attributed to violence, which were primarily the result of military actions by Coalition forces. Most of those killed by Coalition forces were women and children. However, the researchers stressed that they found no evidence of improper conduct by the Coalition soldiers. The survey is the first countrywide attempt to calculate the number of civilian deaths in Iraq since the war began. The United States military does not keep records on civilian deaths and record keeping by the Iraq Ministry of Health is limited. The study is published in the October 29, 2004, online edition of The Lancet. "Our findings need to be independently verified with a larger sample group. However, I think our survey demonstrates the importance of collecting civilian casualty information during a war and that it can be done," said lead author Les Roberts, PhD, an associate with the Bloomberg School of Public Health's Center for International Emergency, Disaster and Refugee Studies. The researchers conducted their survey in September 2004. They randomly selected 33 neighborhoods of 30 homes from across Iraq and interviewed the residents about the number and ages of the people living in each home. Over 7,800 Iraqis were included. Residents were questioned about the number of births and deaths that occurred in the household since January 2002. Information was also collected about the causes and circumstances of each death. When possible, the deaths were verified with a death certificate or other documentation. The researchers compared the mortality rate among civilians in Iraq during the 14.6 months prior to the March 2003 invasion with the 17.8 month period following the invasion. The sample group reported 46 deaths prior to the March 2003 and 142 deaths following the invasion. The results were calculated twice, both with and without information from the city of Falluja. The researchers felt the excessive violence from combat in Falluja could skew the overall mortality rates. Excluding information from Falluja, they estimate that 100,000 more Iraqis died than would have been expected had the invasion not occurred. Eighty-four percent of the deaths were reported to be caused by the actions of Coalition forces and 95 percent of those deaths were due to air strikes and artillery. "There is a real necessity for accurate monitoring of civilian deaths during combat situations. Otherwise it is impossible to know the extent of the problems civilians may be facing or how to protect them," explained study co-author Gilbert Burnham, MD, associate professor of International Health at the Bloomberg School of Public Health and director of the Center for International, Disaster and Refugee Studies. "Mortality before and after the 2003 invasion of Iraq: cluster sample survey" was written by Les Roberts, Riyadh Lafta, Richard Garfield, Jamal Khudhairi and Gilbert Burnham. Roberts and Burham are with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Lafta and Khudhairi are with the College of Medicine at Al-Mustansiriya University in Baghdad. Garfield is with the Columbia University School of Nursing. The study was funded by the Center for International Emergency, Disaster and Refugee Studies at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Small Arms Survey in Geneva, Switzerland. Public Affairs media contacts for the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health: Tim Parsons at 410-955-6878 or paffairs@jhsph.edu.


ICRC 1 Oct 2004 ICRC News 04/116 Israel and the occupied / autonomous territories: ICRC urges respect for international humanitarian law The ICRC is deeply concerned about the effects of the violence that has taken place in the Gaza Strip and Israel in the last few days. The ICRC is alarmed by this recent escalation, particularly by the deaths of several children and other civilians in the past 24 hours. It wishes to remind all those involved in the hostilities that the Fourth 1949 Geneva Convention is applicable in the occupied and autonomous territories and that international humanitarian law prohibits the killing or harming of civilians who are not directly taking part in the hostilities. The ICRC calls on all parties to the conflict to exercise restraint and to respect the principle of proportionality in all military operations. It also urges them to respect the rules and other principles of international humanitarian law under all circumstances. It stresses that all necessary precautions must be taken to spare civilians and civilian property, to ensure that the wounded have access to adequate medical facilities and to ensure that medical personnel, vehicles and facilities can function effectively and without hindrance at all times.

AP 1 Oct 2004 State Department urges Israel not to go beyond a ``proportional'' response - Friday, October 1, 2004 (10-01) 11:35 PDT WASHINGTON (AP) -- The State Department called on Israel Friday to limit its military response to a rocket attack by Hamas that killed two small Israeli children. Israel has a right to defend itself but should limit itself to using "proportional force," deputy spokesman Adam Ereli said. "It's important to avoid civilian casualties," Ereli said and "to not target civilians." The statement was issued as Israeli armored vehicles massed on the Gaza border after Israel's security Cabinet had approved a large-scale military operation to stop Palestinian rocket attacks. Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz had ordered troops to "exact a price" after a Hamas rocket killed two children, ages 2 and 4, in an Israeli border town.

US State Dept. Daily Press Briefing 4 Oct 2004 [Excerpt] QUESTION: Does the United States believe that Israel has followed its call to show only proportionate force in the operations ongoing now in Gaza? MR. ERELI: The United States remains concerned about what's happening in the region. We continue to speak with all parties and urge them to exercise maximum restraint and avoid actions that escalate tension. We also are urging all sides to take every measure to avoid civilian casualties and we are urging the Israelis to minimize the humanitarian consequences of their actions. At the same time, we would reiterate the right of -- Israel's right to defend itself, but without -- I'm not going to get into a mathematical discussion of -- at this point, of what's proportional and what's not proportional. QUESTION: Okay. Well, you're urging both sides to show maximum restraint. Have they, in your view? MR. ERELI: I think we regret the loss of civilian life. We are concerned when civilian life is -- when civilians are the victims of armed conflict. It is something that we speak out against. At the same time, we recognize that there are terrorist activities being conducted from Gaza and that Israel has a right to defend itself. QUESTION: I'm sorry. At some point in there, I think you missed answering my question. You have called on both sides to show -- urged both sides to show maximum restraint. In your view, have they? Have both sides shown maximum restraint? MR. ERELI: It is not a judgment I'm prepared to make and prepared to speak to. QUESTION: When you said civilian casualties, you know, you regret, you mean the civilian casualties in the Israeli raids? MR. ERELI: I think I was speaking of civilian casualties since I last spoke on Friday. QUESTION: Yeah, right. QUESTION: Just on this as well. There is a bit of a to-do brewing between Israel and the United Nations, UNRWA in particular, some footage that the Israelis -- from an Israeli drone that was put out, which they say shows members of Hamas using an UNRWA ambulance. I'm wondering if you have any comment on this situation. UNRWA has vehemently denied it and this fight is getting personal in nature with Israelis accusing the head of UNRWA of hating Israel. Do you have any comment on this? MR. ERELI: The only comment I would have is that we, too, have seen those reports. I'm not in a position to validate them for you. Obviously, if resources of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees were misused in this way, it would be unacceptable. QUESTION: And what is the consequence? MR. ERELI: Well, I think it's -- at this point, we're talking about a hypothetical. QUESTION: Have you talked to member -- people at UNRWA and expressed this view, and told them what might happen if -- MR. ERELI: I'm not sure what conversations we've had with UNRWA at this point.

AFP 4 Oct 2004 Israel Accused of Genocide in Gaza Hala Boncompagni Agence France Presse, Arab News AMMAN, 4 October 2004 — Governments around the Middle East yesterday hit out at Israel’s massive five-day-old invasion into Gaza, as the death toll hit 66 and the Palestinians pleaded for international support. Iran accused Israel of committing genocide in the Gaza Strip and called for international intervention to halt the latest operation, while key Western ally Jordan warned the arrogance of the Jewish state was fuelling retaliation around the region. Palestinian Negotiations Minister Saeb Erekat said the lack of international reaction to the Israeli onslaught was encouraging Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to continue the onslaught. “The absence of international reaction is encouraging Ariel Sharon to assert that the operation will continue, although the situation is getting worse and the Palestinian people are enduring massacres,” he said. Arab League representatives decided that the 22-member bloc would make a joint appeal at the United Nations for urgent action to halt Israel’s “continuing war of extermination against the Palestinian people.” “The genocide of Palestinians and violations of international laws by the Israelis means that action from the international community is needed to defend the defenseless people of Palestine,” the Iranian Foreign Ministry said. “The brutal slaughter of innocent people in the Gaza Strip has further exposed the inhuman nature of the Zionist regime’s leaders to the public,” ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told the official IRNA news agency. Iran does not recognize the Zionist state, which has regarded the Islamic republic as its No. 1 enemy since the overthrow of Saddam Hussein’s regime in Iraq last year. However neighboring Jordan, which signed a 1994 peace treaty with Israel, was also forthright in its condemnation. “Israel’s arrogance and the pursuit of its policy of assassinations and mass killings of Palestinian civilians as well as the destruction of property and infrastructure in the Palestinian territories does not serve the peace process,” King Abdallah told a visiting British delegation. “Such action will increase the cycle of violence and fuel the phenomenon of extremism in the region,” the official Petra news agency quoted him as saying. King Abdallah’s comments were all the more striking as he has won plaudits in Israel for his outspoken criticism of the Palestinian leadership in recent weeks. The king echoed that criticism yesterday calling on the Palestinian Authority “to settle its internal disputes and close its ranks in order to achieve the aspirations of the Palestinian people and to become an effective partner in the peace process”. Another Western ally, Kuwait, hit out at what it described as Israel’s “criminal actions” against the Palestinian people and demanded international action to stop to them. “The Israeli policy of committing more killings and the destruction of property will lead the region to more violence and instability,” ministers said after their weekly meeting. “The Cabinet calls on the international community, particularly the quartet members (the European Union, Russia, the United Nations and the United States) and the UN Security Council, to intervene immediately and decisively to put an end to the Israeli criminal actions.” In Cairo, the Arab League said there would be an “urgent appeal to the General Assembly and or Security Council” for the “international protection that is indispensable” to the Palestinian people. Arab ambassadors called on the quartet to “to live up to its responsibility and move rapidly to take a decisive stand to end the Israeli aggression”. The United States, Israel’s main ally, has expressed “regret” over civilian casualties from the offensive and called on Israel to use “only proportional force”. But it has declined to condemn the incursion, saying that Israel had a right to defend itself. Erekat told AFP the lack of stronger world condemnation was encouraging the Israeli premier to press the vast operation.

Amnesty International 5 Oct 2004 Excessive use of force AI Index: MDE 15/095/2004 (Public) Amnesty International is concerned about the deterioration of the human rights and humanitarian situation as a result of the Israeli army incursion in the Jabaliya refugee camp and surrounding areas in the northern Gaza Strip (including sectors in the nearby towns of Beit Hanoun and Beit Lahiya). In the past week (since the evening of Tuesday 28 September) more than 70 Palestinians have been killed, more than a third of whom were unarmed and including some 20 children. Hundreds of others have been injured. The Israeli army has repeatedly used excessive force, including heavy shelling from tanks and helicopter gunships. Experience has shown that the use of such weapons and the manner in which they have been deployed by the army in densely populated residential areas (the Jabaliya refugee camp is one of the most densely populated places in the world, with more than 100,000 Palestinians living in less than two square kilometres), invariably results in a high rate of death and injury of bystanders and people who are not involved in armed confrontation. These tactics betray a lack of respect for fundamental human rights principles, including the right to life. In certain areas the Israeli army has also unlawfully destroyed or damaged homes, schools, water and electricity networks, roads, and other crucial infrastructure. Israeli forces have hindered access to medical services -- not only for those injured in the military operation but also those who need medical care for other reasons, including women who need to give birth. When able to reach those in need (they often cannot reach those in need of medical treatment) ambulances have on several occasions come under Israeli army fire. Strict closures have also been imposed throughout the Gaza Strip in the past week, cutting the Gaza Strip into four isolated sections, paralysing all aspects of life, with people unable to reach their workplace and students unable to reach the universities. In addition schools in the area besieged by the Israeli army in the northern Gaza Strip are closed. Thousands of people living in the besieged areas are also experiencing shortages of food and other essential goods. Amnesty International is calling on the Israeli authority to: put an immediate end to the use of excessive lethal force put an immediate end to unlawful destruction and damage of Palestinian homes and properties, roads and other infrastructure allow immediate access to medical care and other essential services for the Palestinian population in the affected areas respect the right to freedom of movement for the Palestinian population elsewhere in the Gaza Strip Amnesty International also calls on Palestinian armed groups not to initiate attacks and armed confrontation with Israeli troops from amongst residential areas, as this puts the local residents at risk of return fire and retaliation from the Israeli army, and reiterates its call on Palestinian armed groups to put an end to attacks directed against Israeli civilians in Israel or in the Occupied Territories.

CTV.ca (Canada) 6 Oct 2004 U.S. vetoes Security Council resolution on Gaza News Staff The United States has vetoed an Arab-backed resolution at the United Nations Security Council that demanded an end to Israel's military operations in the Gaza strip. The vote was 11 in favour, three abstentions and one against. Britain, Germany and Romania were the three abstainers. The draft resolution would have also reaffirmed support for the nearly-dead "road map" for peace in the Middle East and would have also demanded the pullback of Israeli forces. Israeli military operations in the Gaza Strip have taken at least 68 Palestinian lives this past week. Palestinian Authority officials have complained about the world's low-key response to what it says is an unprecedented raid. However, Palestinian militants have been firing rockets towards Israeli settlements along the Gaza border. Two Israeli children died as a result of Hamas rocket fire last week. "The immediate problem right now is that Israeli built-up areas are being hit by rockets and (Israeli Prime Minister Ariel) Sharon finds a need to respond to that. I hope it does not expand,'' U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell told reporters Tuesday. "And I hope that whatever he does is proportionate to the threat that Israel is facing and I hope that this operation can come to a conclusion quickly.'' Powell says he couldn't say whether the attacks to date have constituted a proportional response. Ben Bot, the foreign minister of the Netherlands, described Israel's actions as "disproportionate." He said the European Union (Netherlands currently holds the presidency) would be prepared to act as a mediator in peace talks. France and Egypt have also condemned the attacks, but the international community has also called on the Palestinians to end the rocket attacks. It has also acknowledged Israel has a right to self-defence. Israel says its troops will remain in the area as long as it is deemed necessary. An Israeli military official said Tuesday that indirect contacts had been made with the Palestinians aimed at ending the Gaza conflict, but the Palestinians denied it. Other news: A Palestinian militant leader was killed Tuesday by Israeli missile fire. Bashir Aldabash, 40, was in a car that was struck by the missile. He was affiliated with Islamic Jihad. A second man was also killed. Two more militants were killed by missile fire late Tuesday. The Hamas fighters were in the Jebaliya refugee camp. Three others were injured. Witnesses and security officials say the men were preparing to attack Israeli forces.

www.arabnews.com 7 Oct 2004 OIC Condemns Israeli Genocide Habib Shaikh, Arab News JEDDAH, 7 October 2004 — The Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) has strongly condemned the “persistent genocidal offensive” being waged by the Israeli occupation forces in the Gaza Strip. In a statement made available to Arab News, Secretary-General Dr. Abdelouahed Belkeziz launched a stinging attack on Israel’s proclaimed intention to expand its campaign in the next few days despite the UN secretary-general’s demand to immediately bring it to an end and the offer from the Palestinian resistance to stop firing rockets at Israeli settlements in Gaza in exchange for an end to the Israeli Army’s operations in the Gaza Strip. Belkeziz called on the international community, particularly the Quartet Committee, to work to bring Israel back to peace negotiations on the basis of the road map and to put a definitive end to its persistent aggression against the Palestinian people, its continued policy of assassinations and mass killings of Palestinians and its destruction of property and infrastructure in the Palestinian territories. “This policy not only fails to serve the peace process but actually fuels the cycle of violence and increases instability in the region,” he emphasized.

NYT 10 Oct 2004 The High Cost of Israel's Gaza Mission: Innocent Victims By GREG MYRE ABALIYA REFUGEE CAMP, Gaza Strip, Oct. 9 - With helicopters circling overhead and tanks parked on the fringes of the largest Palestinian refugee camp, Israeli forces are trying to pick off masked militants who are shooting at the soldiers and launching rockets into Israel. The mission is difficult. The militants are elusive, darting through the camp's narrow alleys, and civilians are everywhere, with children filling the streets. The result is that many of the casualties are innocents. In 11 days of fighting in the northern Gaza Strip, Israeli forces have killed at least 90 Palestinians, including about 55 militants and 35 civilians, according to Palestinian hospital officials. The dead include 18 Palestinians who were 16 or younger, according to a count by The Associated Press. In addition, most of the wounded, numbering at least 300, have been noncombatants, hospital officials say. The Israeli offensive in northern Gaza has claimed more Palestinian lives than any operation since the military swept through Palestinian cities in the West Bank in the spring of 2002 in response to a wave of suicide bombings. Over all, several hundred Palestinians were killed. In the West Bank, Israeli troops went door-to-door in Palestinian cities, and the military also suffered substantial casualties. Now, in Gaza, the Israelis are sticking to the relative safety of their tanks and armored vehicles, and just two soldiers have been killed. But this also means the troops tend to be firing powerful weapons into congested areas from a distance. In many instances, Israel has singled out militants among large groups of civilians. In an airstrike Tuesday evening, the Israelis fired on a busy street in downtown Gaza City. One missile missed, but the second destroyed the intended target, a white sedan, killing a leading figure in the Islamic Jihad faction, Bashir al-Dabash, and a bodyguard. Three passers-by were lightly wounded. Several hours later, at about 1 a.m. Wednesday, an Israeli tank came under fire in the nearby town of Beit Lahiya. Israeli forces responded by shelling a house that they believed was the source of the attack, according to the military. However, Palestinian ambulance drivers and survivors said three houses were hit by three separate shells. In one, a father and son were killed. In another, a teenage boy was killed in his bed. And in the Filfil family home, a five-story building, a shell crashed through a top-floor window and slammed into the living room where the parents and nine children had gathered in an effort to stay safe. "We were awake from fear, and I was making tea for the family," said Sumaya Filfil, 36, the mother of the children, who range from 7 months to 13 years old. "Suddenly we heard an explosion and were thrown to the floor." The entire family was sprayed with shrapnel, and they are now recovering in three separate hospitals. Mrs. Filfil and several of her children share a single room. All have faces reddened from cuts. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon says he is determined to withdraw Israeli soldiers and settlers from Gaza next year. But he also says he will not allow Palestinians to fire rockets at Israeli communities without a response. Still, Israel was wary of waging a large-scale campaign in northern Gaza out of concern that its troops would get bogged down in urban fighting. The military has acknowledged Palestinian civilian casualties, and it says they are unintentional. Zalman Shoval, an adviser to Mr. Sharon, said: "Israel carefully weighs the dangers to civilians. But we feel the terrorists were using civilian areas as their shields. Remember, they are deliberately targeting our civilians. Their rockets forced us into this." Palestinians have fired about 450 rockets in the past three years, most launched from northern Gaza and directed at the Israeli town of Sederot. Four Israelis have been killed, including two children, ages 2 and 4, who were struck on Sept. 29. Despite the large Israeli military presence, estimated at 200 armored vehicles, the vast majority of Palestinian families have defiantly remained in their homes, even those on the front lines, like the Filfils. The Filfil family is prosperous and can afford to move from the Beit Lahiya area until the danger passes. Gaza City is just a few miles away and has been largely unaffected. "Why should I run? This is our house," Mrs. Filfil said. And when the family members recover, where will they go if Israeli tanks are still parked outside? "I would go straight home, and take my kids," she said. Palestinians cite several reasons for staying in the face of such danger. Many have large families and are extremely poor, saying they have no money to move out and no place to go. Others want to express solidarity with the Palestinian militants. Older Palestinians recall the 1948-9 war at Israel's independence, when hundreds of thousands of Palestinians lost their homes, and say they fear the same thing could happen again. "The catastrophe of 1948 will not be repeated," said Dr. Mahmoud al-Asali, head of Kamal Adwan Hospital, which has treated most of the casualties. "We say, 'We will die here, but we will not leave here.' " On Saturday, Israeli forces shot dead five Palestinian militants in northern Gaza, the military said. Also, a helicopter missile strike killed two armed Palestinians in the southern town of Khan Yunis, the military said. Palestinians said the two were policemen. While Israeli armored vehicles are parked along the eastern and southern edges of the Jabaliya camp, a warren of cinderblock buildings housing more than 100,000 Palestinians, life inside the camp goes on. Pedestrians clog the streets, making it difficult to maneuver a car. Policemen casually watch over some corners, and men sit on the front steps of shops, sipping tea. The deceptive normality is frequently interrupted by Israeli drones, buzzing overhead like lawnmowers in the sky, though they are difficult to spot even on a cloudless day. In such a congested place, children play in the streets, and teenagers gravitate toward the tanks to throw stones or Molotov cocktails. On Thursday, Sliman Abu Ful, and one of his relatives, Raed Abu Zeid, both 15, were killed by a helicopter missile as they approached to within a couple hundred yards of Israeli tanks, witnesses said. Family members said the youths were using an empty plastic tube to simulate the firing of a rocket. The Israeli military said the helicopter fired after two Palestinians were seen trying to launch a rocket. Mrs. Ful said she and her elderly husband tried to keep their son away from the Israeli tanks, to no avail. "I told him to stay at home or go to school," she said as she wept. "But every day the Israelis were there, he would go. He always told me, 'Forgive me, but I want to be a martyr.' " As Sliman's body was carried from his house into the street, another noisy funeral procession was in progress just a block away, this one for a teenager who died of wounds suffered last week. "We won't bow to the Israelis or Americans," said a Palestinian man over a loudspeaker. Then he continued, "Raise your hand if you want to be a martyr." Dozens of young hands shot up in unison.

NYT 17 Oct 2004 ESSAY Trial and Error By MICHAEL MASSING THE coming trial of Saddam Hussein promises to be an uproarious, wrenching and tangled affair, with disputes over witnesses, wrangling over fairness and ''victors' justice,'' and arguments about evidence, responsibility and chains of command, all recorded and analyzed by hundreds of journalists from around the world. For some guidance as to what to expect -- and what, perhaps, to avoid -- it is worth revisiting that most famous of war crimes reports, Hannah Arendt's ''Eichmann in Jerusalem.'' The trial of Adolf Eichmann, held in 1961, also attracted crowds of journalists. Within weeks, however, as the trial settled into a mind-numbing routine, most had left. Arendt was one of the few to sit through the entire four-month proceeding. Her account, nearly 300 pages long, first appeared in The New Yorker in 1963, and it caused a furor. Today, it seems no less provocative, in ways both good and bad. As trial reports go, ''Eichmann in Jerusalem'' is highly peculiar. It is only intermittently about the trial itself. Arendt's main focus is the Nazi effort to exterminate the Jews, and whole chapters are given over to dense descriptions of their fate in various parts of Europe. This might reflect the fact that, at the time she was writing, the full story of the Holocaust remained largely unknown in this country. Still, it is striking how rarely Arendt writes about witnesses or cites their testimony. Chronology seems foreign to her. Strangely, the extraordinary story of how a balding, middle-aged man came to be sitting in a glass-enclosed box in Jerusalem -- his flight from Germany to Argentina after the war, his incognito life in a Buenos Aires suburb, the gradual discovery of his identity, his spectacular kidnapping by Israeli secret agents -- comes not at the beginning of Arendt's account but near the end. Arendt's assessment of Eichmann and his deeds seems especially odd. The declasse son of a middle-class family, who as a young man worked as a traveling fuel-oil salesman, Eichmann rose to become the senior Nazi official in charge of deporting and transporting Europe's Jews to the death camps. Yet Arendt seems always to find a mitigating circumstance. ''He did not enter the party out of conviction, nor was he ever convinced by it,'' she writes. It was not any fanatical hatred for the Jews but a desire to advance his career that drove his work as a Nazi, she maintains. Although Eichmann had repeatedly visited Auschwitz and seen the killing apparatus there, Arendt, noting he did not personally participate in the slaughter, insists that his role in the Final Solution ''had been wildly exaggerated.'' She even has the occasional kind word for Eichmann, citing evidence, for instance, that he was ''rather decent toward his subordinates.'' Over all, Arendt concludes, Eichmann ''was not Iago and not Macbeth. . . . Except for an extraordinary diligence in looking out for his personal advancement, he had no motives at all.'' Such an assessment leads Arendt to render her famous judgment about Eichmann: that he represented the ''banality of evil.'' It is striking that this phrase -- for which Arendt's book is so remembered -- appears only at the very end, as its last three words (excluding the epilogue and postscript). The phrase does, however, figure in the book's subtitle (''A Report on the Banality of Evil''), and it constitutes the core of her effort to explain how Eichmann could have committed such gruesome acts. In Arendt's telling, Eichmann is the consummate bureaucrat, faithfully carrying out his superiors' orders with only the faintest awareness of their implications. As a description of Eichmann, this is simply not credible. It was Eichmann's organizing and negotiating skills that enabled the Nazis to round up and transport millions of Jews from across Europe to the slaughterhouses of Poland. In a new biography, David Cesarani, a professor of history at the University of Southampton, contends that Eichmann, far from being the faceless functionary portrayed by Arendt, was in fact a committed anti-Semite who played an essential part in carrying out Hitler's genocidal schemes. Arendt's solicitous treatment of Eichmann seems all the more unaccountable when compared to her relentlessly harsh portrayal of Europe's Jewish leaders. In a book dripping with sarcasm and scorn, Arendt reserves some of her bitterest comments for the Jewish leaders who cooperated with the Nazis. Had these leaders not so obligingly provided lists of Jewish residents, had they not so diligently compiled accounts of Jewish possessions, had they not so uniformly counseled submission to German deportation orders, many of the millions who perished during the war could have been saved, Arendt contends. ''To a Jew,'' she writes, ''this role of the Jewish leaders in the destruction of their own people is undoubtedly the darkest chapter of the whole dark story.'' Such observations sparked outrage in American Jewish circles; the Anti-Defamation League, for instance, called ''Eichmann in Jerusalem'' an ''evil book'' and circulated negative reviews of her work. Read today, these passages seem no less incendiary. The Judenrat phenomenon was real and disturbing, and Arendt perhaps felt compelled to dwell on it at such length because it had not yet received much attention, but to call this ''the darkest chapter of the whole dark story'' and to assert that the Jews of Europe ''inevitably found themselves confronted with two enemies -- the Nazi authorities and the Jewish authorities'' -- as if the two were somehow equivalent -- suggests a serious lapse in moral judgment. Yet, for all these flaws, Arendt was clearly onto something in ''Eichmann in Jerusalem.'' One can see it emerging in the (too few) passages in which she discusses the attitudes of the German people. The ''overwhelming majority'' of them, she observes, believed in Hitler and most ''obviously could not have cared less'' about the fate of their Jewish neighbors. ''The trouble with Eichmann,'' Arendt writes in her epilogue, ''was precisely that so many were like him, and that the many were neither perverted nor sadistic, that they were, and still are, terribly and terrifyingly normal.'' This is getting at the heart of the matter. That Europe's most educated and culturally sophisticated people could support and even cheer the bestial schemes of their deranged leaders surely constitutes the darkest chapter of the Holocaust, and while Arendt seems wrong to lump in a henchman like Eichmann with the faceless masses, her phrase ''the banality of evil,'' in brilliant shorthand fashion, helps point us toward an understanding of this broader horror. In the decades since her book appeared, the phrase's aptness has, alas, received repeated demonstrations. The nightmares of Cambodia, Bosnia and Rwanda all testify to the unspeakable acts that ordinary people, when placed in the right circumstances, are capable of committing. Vivid testimony is provided by ''Une Saison de Machettes,'' by the French journalist Jean Hatzfeld, published last year in Paris (and soon to appear in English under the title ''Machete Season: The Killers in Rwanda Speak''). In an earlier work, Hatzfeld described the Rwandan genocide from the standpoint of the victims. Here, he concentrates on the perpetrators. Cultivating a group of imprisoned genocidaires, or perpetrators of genocide, he got them to speak openly about their murderous activities, and it is chilling to see just how matter-of-factly they went about it. Instructed by Hutu militia leaders to kill Tutsis, these villagers approached the task much as they would a 9-to-5 job. ''Some offenders claim that we changed into wild animals,'' one of them told Hatzfeld, ''that we were blinded by ferocity. . . . That is a trick to sidetrack the truth. I can say this: outside the marshes, our lives seemed quite ordinary. We sang on the paths . . . we had our choice amid abundance. We chatted about our good fortune, we soaped off our bloodstains in the basin, our noses enjoyed the aromas of full cooking pots. We rejoiced in the new life about to begin by feasting on leg of veal. We were hot at night atop our wives, and we scolded our rowdy children. . . . We put on our field clothes. We swapped gossip at the cabaret, we made bets on our victim, spoke mockingly of cut girls, squabbled foolishly over looted grain. We sharpened our tools on whetting stones. We traded stories about desperate Tutsi tricks, we made fun of every 'Mercy!' cried by someone who'd been hunted down, we counted up and stashed away our goods.'' How else to describe this but the banality of evil? Hatzfeld, in explaining his decision to speak with these criminals and give them voice, says he was inspired in part by ''Eichmann in Jerusalem.'' Arendt's famous phrase also comes to mind regarding the recent abuses at Abu Ghraib. How could Americans, imbued with all the right values, have committed such acts? Yet, placed in a situation where certain ends (good intelligence) were demanded from prisoners who had been demonized and dehumanized, they showed how quickly the dictates of conscience can fade. Needless to say, the happenings at Abu Ghraib are a long way from the genocidal policies of Nazi Germany -- as they are from the murderous activities of Saddam Hussein. There is nothing banal about the evil he represents. Sadly, the civilized world will always be stalked by such monsters. The really disturbing question is how so many non-monsters will blithely do their bidding. Somehow Hannah Arendt, in the course of writing her messy, meandering, morally muddled account of the Eichmann trial, managed to come up with a phrase that captures an essential and chilling truth about the darkest recesses of the human psyche. Michael Massing is the author of ''Now They Tell Us: The American Press and Iraq."

btselem.org IL 18 Oct 2004: Disproportionate Force Suspected in Northern Gaza Strip 133 Palestinians killed during IDF Action in Gaza Strip B'Tselem Calls for Investigations into all Civilian Deaths B'Tselem's investigation indicates that during the 'Days of Repentance' Operation (29 September – 15 October 2004): IDF forces in the northern Gaza Strip (Beit Hanun, Beit Lahiya, and the Jabalya refugee camp) killed 116 Palestinians and wounded approximately 430 Palestinians; Among those killed were 50 civilians who did not take part in the hostilities, including 26 children under 18; The IDF damaged at least 235 homes in the northern Gaza Strip: 85 housing units were completely demolished and another 150 housing units were severely damaged. An additional 17 Palestinians were killed during IDF actions in the central and southern sections of the Gaza Strip. B'Tselem has not yet completed its investigation into the identity of the persons killed and the circumstances in which they died. One Israeli soldier was killed during the operation. The death of a large number of civilians who did not take part in the fighting, as well as the enormous property damage, strongly suggest that the IDF used disproportionate and illegal force. The lack of intention to kill civilians does not absolve the IDF commanders from their obligation to prevent gunfire, even when directed at armed individuals, if such fire is liable to result in disproportionate harm to civilians. The Qassam missile attacks on Sderot are themselves a violation of international law. However, the grief over the death of the three residents of Sderot, among them two children, cannot justify the violation of international humanitarian law. B'Tselem urges the government of Israel to direct the Military Police to investigate the deaths of all Palestinian civilians who did not take part in the fighting, and where appropriate, prosecute the soldiers responsible. Furthermore, the IDF must learn the lessons from this operation in order to prevent such widespread civilian deaths in the future.

Reuters 26 Oct 2004 Israeli parliament backs Sharon Gaza pullout plan By Allyn Fisher-Ilan JERUSALEM, Oct 26 (Reuters) - Israel's parliament ratified Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's Gaza withdrawal plan on Tuesday, a pivotal step towards the first evacuation of settlers from occupied territory Palestinians want for a state. But Sharon's hard-fought victory came at a price: he fired cabinet minister Uzi Landau and a deputy minister who voted against the plan and led a mutiny in his right-wing Likud party. His strongest rival in Likud, finance minister Benjamin Netanyahu, threatened to resign along with three other cabinet ministers unless Sharon agreed within two weeks to a national referendum on the pullout. The loss of the ministers would further split the party Sharon co-founded and set the scene for a challenge to his leadership or early elections unless he forged a new coalition government, possibly with Shimon Peres's Labour Party. "(We) have decided to give the prime minister two weeks to announce a referendum, and if not, we will not be able to see ourselves as staying in this government," Netanyahu said in parliament minutes after the vote. Sharon has in the past refused to hold a referendum, calling it a delaying tactic. FIERCE DEBATE After a fierce two-day debate, legislators voted 67-45, with seven abstentions, for the U.S.-backed plan charting the removal of all 21 Jewish settlements in the occupied Gaza Strip and four of the 120 Israel has built in the West Bank. Under the plan, the actual uprooting of settlements, a four-stage process slated for completion in 2005, can begin only after a cabinet vote set for March. The United States welcomed the move. White House spokesman Trent Duffy said: "The disengagement plan has the potential of being historic and we see it as an important step in fulfilling President (George W.) Bush's vision of two states living side by side in peace and security." Once the settlers' champion, Sharon told parliament that "disengagement" from the Palestinians in Gaza would boost Israel's security and allow it to seal its grip on larger West Bank settlements. Such comments have fuelled Palestinian fears that Sharon's real aim is to kill off a long-deadlocked peace process and deny them a viable state in the West Bank and Gaza. "We've been watching (them) discussing our future, the future of our children, the future of the Palestinians, with one factor -- us being absent," said Palestinian cabinet minister Saeb Erekat. Besides splintering his government and stoking a Likud mutiny, Sharon's landmark proposal has drawn death threats. Settlers who ringed the heavily guarded parliament held placards calling Sharon a traitor, fiery language last heard in the Israeli political arena before Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated in 1995 by an ultra-nationalist Jew. "We liquidated Rabin and we will liquidate Sharon," said a slogan daubed on a wall in Jerusalem. Some 8,000 Israelis live in occupied Gaza in hard-to-defend settlements among 1.3 million Palestinians. Under Sharon's plan, the settlers will be evacuated in return for hundreds of thousands of dollars in compensation per family. Nationalist hardliners believe Israeli withdrawal would be a dangerous prize for Palestinian militants after more than four years of violence and undermine Jewish claims to ancient biblical land. "The approval of the Sharon plan to withdraw from the Gaza Strip is a big achievement for the Palestinian people and the resistance, which alone has pushed the Zionist enemy into thinking about leaving," said Mushir al-Masri, a spokesman for the militant Hamas group. Polls show most Israelis regard Gaza, captured along with the West Bank in the 1967 Middle East war, as a liability that Israel should be rid of. If implemented, it would be Israel's first removal of settlements since 1982, when the Sinai Peninsula was returned to Egypt under a 1979 peace treaty. (Additional reporting by Jeffrey Heller and Megan Goldin in Jerusalem, Nidal al-Mughrabi in Gaza, Mohammed Assadi in Ramallah)

Xinhua 26 Oct 2004 Qurei blames int'l community for silent over Israeli massacre www.chinaview.cn 2004-10-26 17:59:55 RAMALLAH, Oct. 26 (Xinhuanet) -- Palestinian Prime Minister Ahmed Qurei has blamed the international community for keeping silent over an Israeli massacre in the southern Gaza Strip town of Khan Yunis. During a weekly session of the cabinet in the West Bank city of Ramallah Monday evening, Qurei said that the international community should pay attention to the Israeli offensive, which left 17 Palestinians dead and more than 70 others injuries. "At the time we talk about a promised Israeli withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, Israel carries out massacres in the Palestinian areas every day," he said, adding "we want to say to the whole world that words and statements are not enough anymore, and we want actions indeed." Qurei said that Israeli crimes must be stopped, first by the United States and by the quartet committee as well as the international society as a whole.


washingtonpost.com 13 Oct 2004 Sectarian Tensions Simmer in Lebanon Power-Sharing Pact Raising New Doubts By Scott Wilson Washington Post Foreign Service Wednesday, October 13, 2004; Page A12 BAAQLIN, Lebanon -- This hilltop town of stone homes and olive trees was the scene of intense fighting during Lebanon's civil war, a harsh memory that has faded in the quiet, prosperous life that has endured here for more than a decade. But the arrest last month of Neameh Qayssamani, a newly elected member of the municipal council, and dozens of other men here in the Chouf Mountains recalled a fearful time most people believed had passed forever. Qayssamani belongs to the largely Druze political party led by Walid Jumblatt, a former militia leader and leading critic of the move by parliament last month to extend the term of Lebanon's Christian president. Qayssamani was arrested by plainclothes police on Sept. 16 and spent the next three days in an interrogation cell in Beirut, the Lebanese capital, about 15 miles north of here. He said the government's message was clear: Jumblatt should hold his tongue, like the rest of Lebanon's cowed political class. "They told me don't think I am special, because no one is," said Qayssamani, who was a foot soldier in Jumblatt's militia during the civil war and now lives in a small stone house here with his wife and five children. "They told me, 'Even if you were a minister, you wouldn't be special.' " Then, on Oct. 1, Marwan Hamadi, a Druze from Baaqlin who had resigned his cabinet post to protest President Emile Lahoud's term extension, was gravely injured by a bomb that exploded in West Beirut as his car passed. His driver, a former soldier from a neighboring village, was killed. The next day, a government agent casually handed the driver's brother a large envelope holding his remains, something his family considered an insult. To many Lebanese, the recent wave of harassment in the Chouf Mountains and violence on the streets of Beirut has revealed that the sectarian tensions and foreign powers that propelled the country's civil war for 15 years remain dangerous elements of political life. Lebanon has prospered since a peace accord imposed order on its fractious political system 14 years ago, but political leaders have begun questioning whether the power-sharing agreement that ended the war remains a viable formula for governing the country. While no one is predicting renewed fighting, many Lebanese leaders say they fear a return of smaller-scale sectarian strife and delays to proposed reforms designed to salvage the country's dismal public finances. Lebanon's political landscape is still dominated by the militia leaders who waged its civil war, and many of the old animosities remain close to the surface. The war pitted the Lebanese military and Christian militias against Palestinian guerrilla organizations fighting alongside armed groups from the country's Muslim majority. Israel, Iran, Syria and other countries vying for regional clout backed individual militias with money and guns. Those alliances shifted frequently over the course of the fighting, which killed 150,000 Lebanese before a 1989 peace agreement guaranteed a more equitable distribution of power among the country's Christian president, Sunni Muslim prime minister and Shiite Muslim speaker of parliament. Under the agreement, the presidency ceded a share of power to the cabinet, which more broadly represents the country's various religious groups. The peace agreement also envisioned the withdrawal of the thousands of troops that Syria sent to Lebanon in 1976 at the invitation of the country's Christian president. But as many as 20,000 Syrian troops remain in Lebanon, and their continuing presence is straining the political framework. Tensions came to a head last month when the Lebanese parliament amended the constitution to allow Lahoud, a Maronite Christian, three more years as president. Leaders of the country's Sunni, Shiite, Druze and Christian communities spoke out against the extension, and Lahoud now faces a rising opposition that includes not only Jumblatt's party but some of his former Christian supporters. The vote came a day after the U.N. Security Council passed a resolution sponsored by the United States and France that tacitly called on Syria to withdraw its troops from Lebanon, disarm Hezbollah, a Shiite militia that operates here with Syrian approval, and cease meddling in the domestic politics of its smaller neighbor. But the international pressure, while welcomed by many Lebanese, has had little practical effect. In a speech Sunday in Damascus, the Syrian capital, President Bashar Assad called the resolution "blatant meddling" in Lebanese-Syrian affairs. Many Lebanese leaders have praised Syria for helping solidify Lebanon's fragile peace. Jumblatt had been among them. But he said he had grown "fed up" with Syria's "intervention in all sectors of public life." "This is primarily an internal matter of keeping a liberal democratic country with freedom of the press from becoming an Arab clone," Jumblatt said in an interview last week at his graceful home in Beirut. "We are mature, we can manage our own affairs. We are clever people. But Lahoud is not going to back down, and this is going to be a long struggle. We should expect more car bombs." Western diplomats and Lebanese political figures, most of whom decline to speak publicly on the subject, say they believe that pro-Syrian forces inside Lebanon carried out the attack on Hamadi in league with Syrian intelligence. Senior Syrian officials have denied involvement. "It's subversion on a massive scale, including threats and assassinations," a Western diplomat in Beirut said of the role of Syrian intelligence in Lebanon. "We've arrived at some uncertainty politically, and we are seeing them resort to tactics like this one." The political formula has provided enough peace to allow the private sector to rebuild the country, spearheaded in large measure by the billionaire prime minister, Rafiq Hariri. His company has managed the multibillion-dollar reconstruction of downtown Beirut, the centerpiece of a thriving tourism industry. But the sectarian political system mostly benefits its participants, and parties that emerged from disarmed militias are largely channels for patronage. Lebanon's countryside has received far less reconstruction aid than urban areas. The economy, while predicted to grow by 5 percent this year, is tilted heavily toward construction and tourism, leaving agriculture and industry with little help. Corruption and inefficiency also have delayed scheduled privatizations of state industry, including that of the dilapidated power company. In recent weeks, Beirut has been without electricity for hours each day. "What we are seeing now is the inability of the Lebanese political system to form an effective government to manage the country's affairs," another Western diplomat in Beirut said. Reform plans have languished during the weeks-long standoff between Hariri, a Sunni, and Lahoud, the former head of the Lebanese army who draws much of his support from the armed services. Their animosity has deepened since Lahoud's term extension, which Hariri opposed until he was summoned to Damascus in late August. "We are facing so many internal problems related to the financial situation of the government, not with the private sector," Hariri said in an interview at his palatial home last week. He declined to discuss his meeting with Assad but suggested that the relationships that have developed between Lebanese and Syrian officials would make removing Syria from national politics difficult. "We're part of the problem -- don't forget that," he said. "This is a fragile democracy, and it needs to be strengthened." Days after her brother was killed in the attack on Hamadi, Wafaa Abou Karoum sat clutching a tissue in a long row of women seated along one wall of the community center in the village of Mazaraat al-Chouf. Across from them sat a grim-faced line of village men, all of them observing a week-long mourning period for the town's slain son, Ghazi Abou Karoum. Thousands of people from various religions had filled the streets for Abou Karoum's funeral. Jumblatt was among them. Wafaa Abou Karoum, weeping intermittently, appeared torn between reconciliation and anger as she talked about her brother's sudden death. "It is the leaders and big politicians who are trying to put obstacles between the different sects," she said. "If they would just leave the normal people to themselves, we would live happily." In her next breath, she had a warning. "No one should try to come near Walid Jumblatt -- he is a mountain of fire," she said. "Let them stop trying to burn our hearts. We can't take that."


BBC 2 Oct 2004 Bomb carnage at Pakistan mosque Troops were called in to keep order At least 25 people have been killed and dozens injured in a suspected suicide bombing at a mosque in the eastern Pakistani city of Sialkot, police say. Hundreds of worshippers of the Muslim Shia minority were packed into the mosque attending Friday prayers. There have been angry protests in Sialkot and Karachi. A second bomb at the scene did not explode, police said. About 100 Shias have been killed in sectarian violence in Pakistan this year alone. The BBC's Paul Anderson in Islamabad says suspicion for the Sialkot attack will fall on one of several extremist groups from the Sunni majority. Crater President Pervez Musharraf has vowed to root out those behind the attack, saying it showed "that terrorists have no religion and are enemies of mankind". Police said the blast at the Mistri Abdullah Imambargah mosque was caused by a device concealed inside a briefcase. The blast took place in the centre of the prayer hall, causing chaos. "I was praying when I first saw a bright light and then something exploded with a big bang, and I fell down," said Sajjad Anwar, 36, who was being treated at a hospital. "My mind stopped working for a while after the blast, but when I opened my eyes, I was lying among dead bodies," said Mumtaz Ali Shah, 43. Police said the bomb left a two-foot deep crater with the dead and wounded strewn across the floor. A second bomb weighing about 5kg was found in a briefcase but was defused by a bomb disposal squad. Anger Hundreds of angry Shias went on the rampage after the explosion, throwing stones at officers and attacking property. PAKISTAN'S SECTARIAN DIVIDE Shias revere Ali, son-in-law of the Prophet Mohammed Pakistan is 20% Shia, 70% Sunni Violence between Sunni and Shia factions began in early 1980s More than 150 people have died in the past year alone About 4,000 people have been killed in total Most violence takes place in Sindh, Balochistan and Punjab Shia-Sunni schism They torched police vehicles, set fire to part of a hospital and blocked roads and the railway line. Troops were deployed onto the streets to restore order. Reports say police tried to push back the crowd to allow the wounded to be taken to hospital. The blast comes just days after security was stepped up in major Pakistani cities amid fears of reprisals for the killing by Pakistani security forces of leading al-Qaeda suspect Amjad Farooqi. Pakistan Information Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said: "It could be a possible reaction to that killing. It is an act of terrorism aimed at destabilising the country." Correspondents says Sialkot is not a known centre for sectarian violence. At least 20 people were killed in a suicide bombing on a Shia mosque in Karachi in May. That attack followed the killing of a leading Sunni cleric.

BBC 7 Oct 2004 Dozens killed in Pakistan blasts It is not yet clear who carried out the attack At least 38 people have been killed and more than 100 injured in two bomb blasts in the Pakistani city of Multan. Hundreds of people had gathered to mark the anniversary of the killing of militant Sunni leader Azim Tariq outside Islamabad last year. The attack is thought to have occurred at about 4.40am (2340 GMT Wednesday). It is not clear who carried out the attack, though it is suspected that radicals of the minority Shia community are responsible. It was dark and people were screaming for help. - it was utter chaos Witness "It seems to be an act of sectarian terrorism, but we are still investigating," Multan's deputy police chief Arshad Hameed told the Associated Press. The attack comes almost a week after a suicide attacker detonated a bomb inside a crowded Shia mosque in the eastern city of Sialkot, killing 31 people and injuring more than 50. It was the latest in a series of attacks against the Shia community in recent months in which more than 100 people have died. Hospital overwhelmed The attack occurred when the night-long public meeting called to galvanise support for the outlawed Sunni group Millat-e-Islami, was about to end. As a large number of people started to walk towards the car park, one of the vehicles exploded. The Associated Press reported that the first blast came from a car bomb, and another minutes later from a device on a motorcycle. Several people died and dozens were injured on the spot, but more were injured in a resulting stampede. "The explosion numbed our ears, we saw people falling on each other, everybody was crying, everybody was running," eyewitness Jamil Usmani said. Witnesses reported people being torn to pieces and screaming for help. Doctors at the city's main hospital said there were more injured in the casualty ward than they could handle. Pakistani Information Minister Sheikh Rashid condemned the attack. "It is an act of brutal terrorism aimed at creating instability in the country," he told AFP. Millat-e-Islami, formerly known as Sipah-e-Sahaba, was banned by the government last year along with a number of other Sunni and Shia groups because of their alleged involvement in sectarian violence. Sunni Muslims make up about 80% of Pakistan's 150 million people. Most of the rest are Shiites.

BBC 7 Oct 2004 Pakistan's schisms spill into present By Zaffar Abbas BBC Islamabad correspondent Some had hoped that Pakistan's crackdown on Islamic extremists would herald a period of religious harmony. Sectarian violence has its roots in the earliest days of Islam Officials had dared to believe that the relative peace of cities like Karachi and Quetta - targets of bomb attacks in recent months - was a sign of the campaign's success in eradicating religious extremism. But two bloody attacks in the first week of October have proved them wrong. The deadly incidents in Sialkot and Multan indicate that sectarian violence has come full circle. Extremist groups are once again returning to the Punjab region where they began more than two decades ago. The attacks also reveal that Sunni extremist groups have not been the only ones to survive a recent ban. New groups of Shia extremists sprung into life just as soon as the old ones were stifled by the authorities. Deep roots Differences between the majority Sunni and minority Shia Muslims date back to the very earliest days of Islam. They are directly linked to the issue of succession following the death of Prophet Muhammad. The Shia believe that after Prophet Muhammad's death, his son-in-law, Ali, should have been given the reins of administration. They still regard him as the first imam or spiritual leader. The Sunni, however, believe that the appointment of one of the Prophet's companions, Abu Bakr, as the first Caliph was correct. The Sunnis also respect Ali as the fourth Caliph of Islam. Schism In AD661, Ali was murdered and his chief opponent, Muawiya, became Caliph. It was the death of Ali that led to the great schism between Sunnis and Shias. Muawiya laid the foundation of family rule in Islam and he was later succeeded by his son, Yazid. But Ali's son Hussein refused to accept his legitimacy, and fighting followed. It is not yet clear who carried out the Multan attack Hussein and his followers were massacred in battle near Karbala in AD680. The deaths of both Ali and Hussein gave rise to the Shia characteristics of martyrdom and a sense of betrayal. Even today, Shia all over the world commemorate the killing of Hussein with vast processions of mourning in Pakistan and other parts of the Muslim world. 'Messianic faith' Shia Islam has always been the rigid faith of the poor and oppressed, of those waiting for deliverance. It is seen as a messianic faith - awaiting the coming of the "hidden imam", Allah's messenger, who will reverse their fortunes and herald the reign of divine justice. Today, the Shia make up about 15% of the total worldwide Muslim population. In Pakistan, as in most Islamic countries, the differences between Sunni and Shia were initially confined to academic debate, and violent incidents were extremely rare. However, the situation took a dramatic turn in the early 1980s. The change in the regional environment, and the emergence of a political, albeit violent, Islam, introduced a new phenomenon of sectarianism to Pakistan. The Soviet invasion of Afghanistan brought funding from the US and Saudi Arabia for (mostly Sunni) Islamic radical groups to fight against Kabul. Shia-Sunni divide The Islamic revolution that ended the monarchy in Shia Iran ushered in a new wave of Shia radicalism in the region. And when the then Pakistani military ruler, General Zia-ul-Haq tried to introduce his own concept of Sunni Islam to the country, a bloody conflict broke out. Radical groups like Sipah-e-Sahaba and Tehrik-e-Jafria have their roots in the policies of those days. Many believe that during this period, Pakistan became the battle ground for a proxy war, a stage on which different countries and organisations belonging to various schools of extremist Islam supported members of their faith and belief. The phenomenon of the Taleban also fuelled this violence, as a number of Sunni extremist groups found both a refuge and a training ground in Afghanistan. The violence continued in different forms even after these countries stepped back. In the last few years, new, more radical groups have emerged, and they target each other with venom. Between the era of General Zia and General Musharraf, successive political governments tried to tackle the problem, but without much success. Global jihad The events of 11 September 2001 changed the world - Pakistan dumped the Taleban and, in 2002, President Musharraf launched a major campaign against Islamic extremists, banning several groups. But within weeks many had resurfaced, with new names but the same old intentions. They were again outlawed last year. Yet recent history seems to suggest that declaring radical groups illegal does nothing to solve the problem. In fact, some Sunni extremist groups have been refining their agenda, joining hands with suspected Al-Qa'eda groups in a so-called global jihad. At least two groups have been found to be involved in attacks against other minorities, particularly Christians. And yet another group was found to be involved in the two attacks on President Musharraf's life in December 2003. The group's leader, Amjad Farooqui, was recently killed in a gun-battle with security forces. Bad year Senior officials believe the present cycle of violence is partly sectarian, and partly linked to the campaign by the extremist groups to destabilise the government. They say that, having been hit in Karachi and Quetta, the groups have now returned to the Punjab to carry out their activities. Officials say the attack on the Sunni gathering in Multan also suggests that after a series of attacks against Shia mosques, a new group of extremists from within the community may have emerged to avenge the killings. After a brief lull last year, 2004 has particularly been a bad year. Since 1980, more than 4,000 people have been killed in Shia-Sunni violence. And with new and more ferocious groups emerging with an ever wider and more violent agenda, it is nearly impossible to say what form it may take in the coming months and years.

www.dawn.com 8 Oct 2004 Religious gatherings banned By Our Staff Reporter ISLAMABAD, Oct 7: Interior Minister Aftab Ahmed Sherpao has said that a complete ban has been imposed on religious gatherings throughout the country. Speaking at a press conference at the interior ministry here on Thursday, the minister said the decision was taken at a high-level meeting presided over by Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz. The meeting was convened against the backdrop of the Multan car bomb blast. He said except for Friday prayers and Taravih congregations in the month of Ramazan, all religious gatherings would be banned. Responding to a question, Mr Sherpao said the provincial governments had been advised to enforce the decision and no religious organization should be allowed to hold any meeting. "It should be the responsibility of provinces to maintain law and order and utilize all their efforts to curb terrorism and sectarianism," he said. Replying to a question, he said the possibility of the Multan blast being an act of sectarian terrorism could not be ruled out. The provincial governments, he said, had also been directed to monitor the activities of workers of banned religious organizations by implementing the Anti-Terrorism Act, 2001, in letter and spirit. Mr Sherpao said any attempt to disrupt sectarian harmony would not be allowed and the government was determined to deal sternly with elements who might try to stir trouble. Referring to his telephonic conversation with chief ministers and leaders of various political parties, the interior minister said all leaders had condemned the incident and endorsed the government decision to ban religious congregations. He said there would be no ban on political gatherings but prior permission from the authorities would be necessary even for such meetings. The minister said it should be the responsibility of the district governments to inform their provincial governments before giving permission for such gatherings and the provinces should take guidance from the federal government so that decisions could be taken in the national interest. "These instructions should be taken into consideration as the federal government does have a full view of the situation before it and the provincial authorities might not have the full view of the situation," he said. "We need to have a collaborated and joint approach to deal with such sensitive situations," he said. Responding to a question about investigation into the incident, the minister said the engine number of the car used in the blast had been traced and further investigations were under way. He said the Millat-i-Islamia Pakistan was a banned organization and it formerly functioned as Sippah-i-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP). Answering a question about the arrests being made in different parts of the country in the wake of the Sialkot blast and other incidents, the interior minister said those who had been found involved in terrorist activities in the past were being arrested. However, he said, revealing the identity of those arrested at this stage might harm the investigation process. COMPENSATION: The minister said the government had announced a compensation of Rs500,000 for those died in the Multan blast, while Rs50,000 for those who sustained injuries. "Half of the compensation amount would be given by the federal government and the remaining would be paid by the Punjab government," he said. The minister said that troops had been called out in Multan following the blast. "Troops have been deployed on the request of the district government to maintain law and order."

BBC 10 Oct 2004 Blast hits Pakistan Shia mosque There have been three such attacks this month alone An explosion at a mosque used by Shia Muslims in the eastern Pakistani city of Lahore has killed at least four people, including a 13-year-old boy. A suicide bomber detonated a device as people had gathered for evening prayers at the Husainia Hall mosque in an old part of Lahore, police said. Two security guards were among those killed - eight people were injured. A series of attacks blamed on Sunni and Shia militants have claimed more than 70 lives in Pakistan this month alone. Briefcase Pakistan has a long history of violence, particularly between majority Sunni and minority Shia Muslims. Sunday's blast follows a number of deadly attacks on Shias over the past few months. A man carrying a briefcase tried to force his way into the mosque. "When security guards stopped him he opened fire and blew himself up, killing two security guards," local police officer Zahir Uddin Babar said. Local Shia leaders arrived to pacify angry people inside, who for some time, prevented police entering and making investigations. SECTARIAN VIOLENCE Lahore, 10 October: 3 killed in mosque attack Multan, 7 October: 40 killed in car bomb attack on Sunni meeting Sialkot, 1 October: 30 killed plus suicide bomber at Shia mosque Karachi, 31 May: Around 20 die in bombing of Shia mosque Karachi, 30 May: Senior Sunni cleric Mufti Nizamuddin Shamzai shot dead Lahore, 14 May: Six members of Shia family shot dead Karachi, 7 May: 15 die in attack on Shia mosque Police said one person who, according to them, looked suspicious, had been arrested. But no group has said they carried out the attack - the third this month in Pakistan's Punjab province. Last Thursday, about 40 people died when a militant Sunni meeting was attacked in the city of Multan. A ban on public meetings was imposed after the deadly car bombing. At least 30 Shias were killed in a mosque bombing on 1 October in the eastern district of Sialkot. But until this latest attack, the provincial capital Lahore, and particularly the old walled city where the Husainia Hall mosque is situated, had been relatively peaceful, says the BBC's Charles Haviland in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad. There is no Shia-Sunni rivalry in the country and leaders of both sects know that it is conspiracy by those who want to plunge the country into instability Sheikh Rashid Information Minister There appears to be an upsurge in Pakistan's decades-old cycle of violence perpetrated by extremists from these two main branches of Islam, our correspondent says. Information Minister Sheikh Rashid described the recent spate of attacks as a conspiracy to trigger Sunni-Shiite violence. "There is no Shia-Sunni rivalry in the country and leaders of both sects know that it is conspiracy by those who want to plunge the country into instability," he said. Sunni Muslims make up about 80% of Pakistan's 150m people. Most of the rest are Shias.

Reuters 12 Oct 2004 Pakistan holds militant over sectarian attacks 12 Oct 2004 08:01:00 GMT Source: Reuters LAHORE, Pakistan, Oct 12 (Reuters) - Pakistani police have arrested a Sunni Muslim militant wanted in connection with more than a dozen sectarian murders and several bombings, intelligence officials said on Tuesday. They said two other militant suspects were arrested in the eastern city of Lahore on Monday by intelligence teams probing Sunday's suicide bombing of a Shi'ite mosque, which killed five people including the bomber. Khawaja Muhammad Waseem, a member of the outlawed Sunni militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (Army of Jhangvi), was arrested in the small city of Khairpur in the southern province of Sindh four days ago, an intelligence official told Reuters. "It is quite a significant catch," said the official, who asked not to be named. "He is wanted for the murder of more than a dozen people and was also involved in bomb blasts." Names of the suspects arrested in Lahore have not been released. Police there have also been trying to determine the identity of the suicide bomber, whose head was found at the site of the attack, the latest in a spate of religious violence that has fuelled fears of a flare-up in sectarian violence between minority Shi'ite and majority Sunni Muslims. A total of 79 people have died in sectarian violence so far this month. The Lahore bombing came a day after the assassination of a leading pro-Taliban cleric, Mufti Jameel Ahmed Khan, and an associate in Karachi on Saturday and a car bomb blast on Thursday that killed at least 42 radical Sunnis in Multan. The Multan bombing followed a suicide bombing at a crowded Shi'ite mosque that killed 30 in the city of Sialkot on Oct. 1. Shi'ites number about 15 percent of Pakistan's predominantly Sunni population of 150 million. Militants from the two Muslim communities have been waging a bloody campaign of attacks on each other for years, ostensibly over doctrinal differences dating almost to the birth of Islam. Analysts say President Pervez Musharraf's administration has itself to blame for the recent violence after failing to follow through on vows to crack down on militant groups, which have been used by successive governments as policy tools against rival India and in Afghanistan. Musharraf outlawed five Sunni and two Shi'ite militant groups after joining the U.S.-led war on terror following the Sept. 11 attacks in 2001. However, the key groups have simply resurfaced under new names since the ban.

Sri Lanka

AFP 5 Oct 2004 Tamil Tigers reject Sri Lanka's new peace bid as waste of time by Amal Jayasinghe COLOMBO, Oct 5 (AFP) - Tamil Tiger rebels on Tuesday rejected Sri Lanka's latest peace initiative as a "time wasting tactic" as Norway warned the insurgents to stop killing political opponents. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) said the National Advisory Council for Peace and Reconciliation, launched by President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Monday to try to broaden the peace process, did not address their demands. Tiger political wing leader S. P. Thamilselvan told the BBC's Tamil-language service that many committees had been formed by successive governments but none had tackled their demands. Thamilselvan, speaking from Geneva, described the council as a "time-wasting tactic" and said stalled peace negotiations could resume on the basis of the LTTE's proposal for an "Interim Self-Governing Authority," or self-rule. "There is also a widespread campaign against us saying we are creating hurdles for the revival of the peace process, which is totally untrue," Thamilselvan said. Peace broker Norway urged the Tigers to stop killing their rivals and warned that the spate of attacks undermined a fragile truce arranged by Oslo and put in place since February 2002. Norway's deputy foreign minister Vidar Helgesen expressed "growing concern" over political assassinations blamed on the LTTE, the Norwegian embassy said in a statement. Helgesen, a key figure in brokering peace on the island, conveyed Oslo's concerns to Thamilselvan who is leading a Tiger delegation to Europe to drum up support for the self-rule plan. "Mr. Helgesen stated that Norway condemns the political killings taking place in Sri Lanka and appealed to the (Tiger) delegation that the LTTE does everything possible to stop such killings," the statement said. Tiger guerrillas have been accused of killing over 250 of their rivals during the ceasefire. Kumaratunga on Monday invited Tigers to start talks on establishing a federal state to end ethnic bloodshed. She said she hoped to consult wider public opinion on peace-related issues through the advisory council despite a boycott by the main opposition parties in parliament. The president said her government was committed peacefully to resolving the conflict that has claimed over 60,000 lives since 1972 and urged the LTTE to resume negotiations. The government was ready to discuss the setting up of an interim administration for the island's embattled regions as demanded by the rebels, but there should be parallel talks on a final peace deal, she said. Both the LTTE and the previous Colombo government, during direct talks in Oslo in December 2002, agreed to adopt a federal structure to devolve power to Sri Lanka's minority Tamils in exchange for peace.

Xinhua 5 Oct 2004 Norway urges Sri Lankan Tamil rebels to stop political killings COLOMBO, Oct 5, 2004 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Norwegian Deputy Foreign Minister Vidar Helgesen has urged Sri Lankan Tamil Tiger rebels to "do everything possible" to stop killing their political opponents which has posed a threat to the country's fragile ceasefire, the Norwegian Embassy here said on Tuesday. Helgesen met with political wing leader of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels Thamilselvan in Geneva on Monday and conveyed to the rebels Norway's growing concern over continuing breaches of the ceasefire agreement the rebels entered into with the Sri Lankan government in February 2002. Helgesen emphasized the negative implications of ceasefire violations for the peace process as a whole and underlined that such violations also make the work of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM), the Scandinavian truce monitors overseeing ceasefire between the two sides, difficult. The LTTE delegation headed by Thamilselvan is currently on a tour of Europe to consult their legal experts on their self-rule proposals in preparation for the possible resumption of the peace talks with the government. The rebels walked out of the peace talks in April last year following six previous rounds of direct negotiations with the previous government of former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.

Xinhua 9 Oct 2004 Killings continue in east Sri Lanka COLOMBO, Oct 9, 2004 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- Sri Lanka's eastern area was the scene of more killings Saturday in the internecine clashes between Tamil Tiger rebel rival factions with two more deaths, defense officials said. A man named Jude, an area leader belonging to the mainstream Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels, was gunned down in broad daylight in the main bus stand at eastern town of Akkaraipattu around 11:00 a.m. local time. His assassin, a suspected member loyal to the LTTE's renegade eastern commander known as Karuna, was shot dead on the spot by government Special Task Force soldiers, witnesses were quoted by the police as saying. Internecine clashes between rival factions of Tamil rebels have hampered the government efforts to revive the stalled peace negotiations on hold since April last year. Karuna broke ranks with the mainstream rebel group in March this year, which has caused an escalation of violence in the east of the country. The LTTE rebels have accused the government of colluding with Karuna to fight against them but the accusation was vehemently denied by the government.


The Nation (Thailand) www.nationmultimedia.com "Bangkok's Independent Newspaper" TAK BAI CRACKDOWN: Global outrage as grim details emerge; PM shows no remorse Published on Oct 28, 2004 Muslim leaders condemn the ‘inhumane’ crackdown as ‘state terrorism’, a ‘massacre’ There was widespread condemnation from the world community yesterday of the “brutal” and “inhumane” treatment of protesters that ended with 78 young men suffocating in the back of crammed Army trucks in the South. Muslim nations were particularly savage, damning Monday’s drama as “state terrorism” and a “holocaust”. Anger and outrage was voiced from far and wide – by religious leaders, government heads and human rights groups in Indonesia, Malaysia, Iran, Pakistan, Hong Kong, the US and more. The head of Indonesia’s Council of Ulemas, Amidhan, said: “They packed them like sardines into trucks. It’s inhumane during this holy fasting month of Ramadan”. “It was brutal,” said Dien Syamsuddin from Indonesia’s second largest Muslim organisation, Muhammadiyah. “What happened was state terrorism. We strongly denounce it.” An Indonesian Foreign Ministry spokesman said Jakarta was “concerned by the escalating tension” in Thailand, and hoped it could be “resolved in a manner consistent with the Thai government’s commitment to social justice”. Indonesia is the world’s most populous Muslim country. It is home to several separatist rebellions, and has battled rising Islamic militancy in recent years. The Muhammadiyah group issued a statement which “strongly condemns the dehumanising action carried out by the Thai security forces toward Muslims in southern Thailand and demands that the tragedy be referred to as a crime against humanity”. A total of 78 Thai-Muslim protesters suffocated to death when they were transported in crowded trucks from a protest site in Narathiwat’s Tak Bai district to an Army camp in Pattani late on Monday night. Malaysian Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said he phoned Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra to express concern and tell him that Malaysia was watching very closely what is happening. “I have also expressed my feelings that in the month of Ramadan, incidents of this nature can bring a lot of unhappiness and create anger and animosity among members of the community,” Abdullah said. Hatta Ramli, a senior official with the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party, said the protesters who died of suffocation or convulsions in the back of police trucks were victims of “a holocaust of modern era, which the Thai government is responsible for”. “This is tragic and a real massacre of a group of people who are just peacefully demonstrating and this will have a great effect on the feelings of southern Thai people. This latest issue will create more instability and dissatisfaction and we are very worried that people will rise against the government,” he said. The independent Malaysian Human Rights Commission said that if the Thai government did not end the violence in the South, it could be viewed as ethnic cleansing by some people and exploited by extremist groups. The Hong Kong-based Asian Human Rights Commission said “the latest mass killing” was the result of a weakening of controls over the police and armed forces in the restive region. It said Bangkok “has blatantly ignored the signs of impending disaster”. Largely Muslim Pakistan’s six-party Islamist opposition alliance slammed the deaths as a “brutal massacre” – and called on the United Nations to investigate. “The killings in Thailand were the outcome of a fear of terror the United States has created all over the world,” said Liaquat Baloch, secretary-general of the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal alliance. Iran joined the condemnation and urged authorities to prosecute those responsible, the state news agency IRNA reported. Iran “considers these actions inappropriate and unacceptable,” foreign ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi was quoted as saying. “We hope that the Thai government will do its best to identify and prosecute those responsible.” The incident, which occurred halfway into the holy Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, fuelled fears that extremists could exploit the situation to create further violence. Iran’s conservative parliamentary speaker, Gholamreza Hadad Adel, also condemned the incident, according to student news agency ISNA. “The Thai government should not treat its Muslim minority like this,” he was quoted as saying. The United States also called for a full probe into the death of the 78 men. It expressed concern over the rising death toll from the Muslim insurgency. “Thai authorities are responsible for the humane treatment of prisoners and we urge that their current investigations fully examine the circumstances of these deaths,” State Department spokesman Edgar Vasquez said. The US, he said, was “concerned about the continued loss of life” in southern Thailand and hopes “that the Thai government will deal with this situation in a way that does not exacerbate tensions”. Photographs contradict govt; witnesses tell of protesters beaten, stacked like animals While Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra uttered no word of apology for Monday’s carnage in which more than 80 young protestors died in Narathiwat, a vivid picture of state brutality and inhuman treatment by security forces began to emerge yesterday. A photograph obtained by The Nation clearly shows a soldier lying on the ground firing his rifle horizontally, refuting the prime minister’s claim that security forces only fired into the air and not directly at protestors. The incident happened after more than 3,000 Muslims, the majority of whom were youths, gathered early on Monday morning outside a police station in Narathiwat’s Tak Bai district calling for the immediate release of six village defence volunteers detained by the army for allegedly giving state-issued pistols to Islamic militants. Citing fears that the situation could get out of control, the military decided to end the six-hour confrontation at about 3pm by firing water canon and tear gas at protestors, causing the stand-off to descend into chaos. The sound of gunfire was heard for about 10 minutes, said Nation photographer Charoon Thongnual, who covered the incident. “Soldiers fired at below knee-level, targeting protestors hiding under a car,” Muhammad Ayuf Pathan, a reporter on the scene, told on-line Prachatham new agency. “They were killed and thrown onto army trucks. There were at least 14 dead bodies, that I could count,” Another reporter said: “I saw at least three protestors kicked to death with my own eyes.” Tak Bai resident Tuwaebosu found the body of his 30-year-old son lying dead under a car parked near the demonstration site. At least one Muslim woman was reportedly among the dead. In contrast to accounts of several eyewitnesses, the authorities claimed only six people died “due to the commotion” during the 30-minute operation. More than 1,300 protestors were taken to the Forth Army Region Forward Command in the adjacent province of Pattani’s Nong Chik district, located some 130 kilometres away from the protest site, packed into military trucks. “The authorities should have taken more time to negotiate with the protestors. They should not have rushed to disperse them so heavy-handedly,” said Abdulrauman Abdulsamat, chairman of Provincial Islamic Committee in Narathiwat. The transportation of protestors sparked outrage in the international community, especially among Muslim nations, when independent forensic expert Pornthip Rojanasunan disclosed the shocking fact that at least 78 Muslims died from suffocation. Security officials in charge of the military operation were yesterday tight-lipped as to how the protestors were treated during transportation from the protest site to the Forth Army Region Forward Command. General Sirichai Thunyasiri was cited by the Associated Press as saying that four trucks were used to carry the protestors on a six-hour journey. A photograph published in the Thai-language newspaper Matichon showed protestors were herded like animals as they were packed onto an army truck in layers. The authorities refused to reveal how many people were put into each truck. A relative of Gifli Mama, 25, who doctors said died of suffocation, said that Gifli’s neck was broken and his face and body bruised, suggesting that he could have died before being put on the truck. Another relative gave an account of an injured protestor, who is now hospitalised, that soldiers tied his hands together and threw him onto a truck. Two to three layers of prisoners were piled on top of him. Those at the bottom needed to push their foreheads against the ground to take in air. When the truck reached the military base, the prisoners limbs numbed and unmoving, soldiers dragged them from the truck and kicked them, he said. At least nine people are being treated at Pattani hospital for gunshot wounds, a hospital source said. Fear, animosity and confusion has gripped the predominantly Muslim South. Relatives have been searching for missing love ones and many are afraid of revenge attacks. The latest victim, Paosi Jehmama, 25, died yesterday in hospital after being detained for two days at a military base, despite being wounded by gunfire, bringing the death toll up to 85.

BBC 29 Oct 2004 Eyewitness: Thailand's deadly protest Thailand is in shock after 78 arrested Muslims died in overloaded army trucks after a protest turned violent. The BBC's Tony Cheng has visited the camp where more than 1,000 survivors of the journey are still being held. "We were tied up, our hands behind our backs," said one man, in his early 30s. Survivors allege they were packed into trucks in layers "They packed us into the trucks, face down, and when the floor was filled they stacked others on top. In my truck there were four layers. I heard that some trucks were seven layers deep," he said. These were the allegations of one of the survivors of Monday's protest in the southern Thai province of Narathiwat. The man had been one of 1,300 loaded into army trucks by the military after the demonstration turned violent. Their destination was military headquarters in Pattani, several hours north. But 78 men were dead before they arrived, having been suffocated or crushed to death. I had gained access to the military headquarters with a delegation of Thai senators who had come from Bangkok to investigate the deaths. We had been taken to the holding room where 200 men sat on the bare concrete floor. Many had fresh scars and bruises, but looked otherwise in good health. The people responsible for this must be brought to justice, by legal means Kraisak Choonawan Senate foreign relations committee As soon as the man had told me this, I was escorted outside by a soldier carrying an M16 rifle. But the senators remained. As they came out they told more harrowing tales. Senator Jermsak Bintong said one man said they were stacked inside the trucks like sardines. "They cried out for help, but the soldier told them 'Now you know what it is like in hell'," the senator said. He said he had been told that the detained men were beaten. "They didn't dare to resist. If they did they were hit with rifle butts," he said. "The people responsible for this must be brought to justice, by legal means," he continued, his anger quite visible. Official story The army, however, had a different story. A presentation to the delegation showed knives, machetes and grenades that had been recovered from the scene of the protest, a police station in the town of Takbai. First-hand accounts from some of the soldiers were shown who said they heard bullets being fired and saw guns in the crowd. It is stomach-churning work for the men charged with cleaning the bodies The commander of the fourth army that controls the southern provinces, Lt General Pisan Wattanawongkiri, admitted some mistakes had been made when he briefed the senators. He said that some soldiers had become violent, but they were afraid. The crowd had been set on causing trouble, he said. He did not know who had given the order to pile the men into the trucks. His hunched shoulders and trembling voice suggested a man under great stress. Just outside the main body of the camp lay the bodies of some of the dead. Twenty corpses, their limbs twisted by rigor mortis and their flesh swollen in the hot weather awaited cleansing by a group of Muslim men. They must have had strong stomachs because the smell from 50 yards was overpowering. As these images and stories filter out, Thailand's Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra will find it increasingly difficult to maintain his hard line on the violence in the south. Many ordinary Thais now feel that the bloodshed is too great to be ignored. If Mr Thaksin cannot find a peaceful solution, it may well threaten his position.

Reuters 30 Oct 2004 Thailand to free 900 protesters Sat 30 October, 2004 05:38 By Viparat Jantrapap BANGKOK (Reuters) - Thai authorities will start releasing today most of the 1,200 Muslim men detained last week after a protest which left 85 dead and outraged Muslims worldwide, the country's prime minister says. Thaksin Shinawatra said 300 protesters would remain in custody as an investigation continued into last Monday's tragedy, one of the bloodiest days in a 10-month wave of unrest in the mainly-Muslim south. "The remaining 900 protesters will be continuously released starting from this afternoon," Thaksin said in his weekly radio address on Saturday. The region, home to most of Thailand's six million Muslims, is seething with anger after 78 men suffocated after being crammed into army trucks and driven five hours to a military barracks. Another seven died as a result of wounds received at the demonstration, which security forces broke up by firing live rounds, teargas and water cannon. Thaksin, under pressure from close ally the United States, regional neighbours and the U.N. rights body, said on Friday he would set up an independent commission to "investigate the incident with the aim of bringing wrongdoers to justice". But Thaksin, speaking on nationwide television, did not single out anyone for blame despite rumours that the army general who ordered soldiers to quell the protest would be sacked. The Bangkok Post newspaper, citing security sources, said on Saturday Lieutenant General Pisarn Wattanawongkeeree's removal was only a matter of time. "We cannot deny local security forces mishandled the case leading to the deaths of so many protesters. Some kind of action has to be taken to show our remorse for the tragedy," an unnamed security officer was quoted as saying. The newspaper also quoted deputy army commander General Theptut Promopagorn as saying: "The army's image and credibility have been badly tarnished worldwide with this incident". In his speech on Friday, Thaksin defended the breakup of the protest, saying efforts to end it peacefully had failed and the crowd was becoming violent. The Thai leader said he regretted the deaths and denied his administration was mistreating Thailand's Muslim minority. "This is a matter of maintaining law and order and has absolutely nothing to do with religion," Thaksin said on Friday. Thai Muslim leaders have said the incident could turn the poor region, home to a separatist insurgency in the 70s and 80s, into a fertile recruiting ground for the likes of al Qaeda. There were no reports of fresh violence in the region, where three bombings have killed two people and wounded more than 30 since Thursday. Countries in the region reacted with dismay and anger to the bloodshed. Muslims demonstrated on Friday outside Thai embassies in Malaysia and Indonesia, chanting anti-Thai slogans and waving banners saying "Stop the genocide of Muslims by Thailand" and "Thailand: the land of bloodshed". Monday's deaths have raised concerns among Thailand's neighbours that the situation in the Malay-speaking south, where at least 440 people have been killed since January, may spiral out of control.


ICRC 8 oct 2004 ICRC News 04/120 Training in humanitarian law for Yemeni teachers On 6 October the ICRC and the Yemeni educational authorities concluded a workshop held in Sana'a to train secondary-school teachers to implement Exploring Humanitarian Law (EHL), a programme intended to familiarize young people with the basic principles of international humanitarian law. The Ministry of Education, the Educational Research and Development Centre and the ICRC delegation in Yemen have been working together since October 2003, when a first group of 32 teachers was trained in EHL. The teachers have now introduced the programme in 16 secondary schools in Yemen's main cities and in remote areas like Saada in the north and the Hadramaut valley in the south. "Our students welcomed the programme with enthusiasm," said Iqbal Abdullah from Lutfi Secondary School in Aden. "Over the past year, it has provided them with a clear understanding of what it means to preserve human dignity in war." Iqbal Abdullah and 15 of his colleagues who attended this week's workshop will train 32 additional teachers when the programme is expanded next year.


ICG 18 Oct 2004 NEW REPORT Armenia: Internal Instability Ahead Armenia's stability is fragile. Its departure from democratic standards generates domestic unrest, and war with Azerbaijan could easily reignite. Corruption and rule of law violations have disillusioned the population, half of which lives below the poverty line, gradually creating a volatile mix. Ten years after the ceasefire in the militarily successful but economically and politically disastrous war over Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenia is not really at peace: the negotiation process is stalled, and there are no mechanisms on the ground to prevent renewed conflict. Armenia enjoys substantial macroeconomic growth but difficult relations with its immediate neighbours have locked it out of all major regional trade deals and east-west pipeline projects, threatening future growth. To protect stability, Armenia needs real peace, a robust approach to democratisation and strengthened rule of law. ICG reports and briefing papers are available on our website: www.icg.org


BBC 14 Oct 2004 Serbs admit Srebrenica death toll Serb forces tried to cover up the Srebrenica crime A Bosnian Serb official report admits for the first time that more than 7,000 Muslims were massacred at Srebrenica. The Bosnian Serb news agency SRNA said the commission's report on the 1995 massacre was being submitted to the Bosnian Serb government on Friday. The report says "more than 7,000 Bosniaks (Bosnian Muslims) were killed in Srebrenica," commission member Smail Cehic told SRNA. The UN war crimes tribunal in The Hague has described the massacre as genocide. In June the Bosnian Serb president admitted for the first time that Serb forces had committed the massacre - but he avoided giving a definite figure for the victims. The massacre occurred after Serb forces stormed a UN-designated safe area during the brutal war in Bosnia-Hercegovina. Fugitives A commission member, Djordje Stojakovic, told the AFP news agency that the commission had "made the most objective and the most correct list of those killed in Srebrenica". "We had more than 30 sources of information but the list is not final. I'm not sure that there will be a final list ever," he added. The Bosnian Serbs' political leader during the 1992-95 war, Radovan Karadzic, and his military commander, Ratko Mladic, are still on the run. Both men have been indicted by the UN tribunal for war crimes and genocide for their alleged roles in the Srebrenica massacre, but they remain at large somewhere in the former Yugoslavia.

BBC 15 Oct 2004 Srebrenica opera opens in Bosnia The opera will raise money for the Beslan school shooting victims An opera inspired by the 1995 massacre of Muslims by Bosnian Serbs at Srebrenica is due to open in Sarajevo. Almost 8,000 men and boys were executed in Srebrenica, which was a UN-declared safe zone at the time. The Bosnian National Opera will perform the opera - called Srebrenicanke (Srebrenica women) - for the first time on Friday night. The opera, which was composed by Ivan Cavlovic, will be dedicated to the victims of terrorism across the world. Terrorism threat The opening night's performance, at the National Theatre in Sarajevo, will be performed in memory of the hundreds of people who died after terrorists seized a school in the Russian town of Beslan last month. Gojko Bjelac, who wrote the libretto and directs the opera, said: "The opera is about the sufferings of the Srebrenica women but it also tells a tale of the sufferings of all victims of terror in the entire world." The opera, consists of 11 short impressions of the in genocide in Srebrenica, the Holocaust during World War II, and the threat of modern terrorism. Bjelac said: "These 11 impressions create the overall message of the opera." Documentary He added that the Srebrenica tragedy had occupied him in a constant quest to explain to the public "the magnitude of the tragedy that happened there". As well as the opera, Bjelac has also written two books and made a documentary on the subject. He said: "I feel obliged as an artist to deal with this tragedy. Art should speak up against evil." Gradimir Gojer, the director of the Bosnian National Theatre, said proceeds from the opening night will be sent to the Beslan victims' families in the Russian republic of North Ossetia.

AFP 19 Oct 2004 - Two children killed in land mine explosion in Bosnia SARAJEVO, Oct 19 (AFP) - Two Bosnian boys were killed when a land mine left from the country's 1992-95 war went off near the southern town of Mostar, a media report said Tuesday. The two shepherds aged 10 and 11 were seen playing with a land mine on Monday when it exploded on a plateau on the Velez mountain, Dnevni Avaz quoted a witness as saying. The area is on the former front line. One of the boys was killed instantly while another died on the way to hospital. More than four percent of the former Yugoslav republic remains riddled with mines, preventing the use of the land and discouraging refugees from returning. Officials estimate that clearing the roughly one million mines scattered around Bosnia will take 70 years. According to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), nearly 1,500 accidents involving mines and explosives have occurred in Bosnia, killing 412 people, since the end of the war. A fifth of the victims have been under 18.

independent.co.uk 19 Oct 2004 The Karadzic makeover: from war crimes to romantic novels By Vesna Peric Zimonjic in Belgrade 19 October 2004 The world may want to ask Radovan Karadzic about the massacre of 7,000 Muslim men and boys, but the war crimes fugitive would rather talk about love. Having evaded the West for more than eight years, the man who stands accused of genocide during the 1992-95 war in Bosniahas penned a romantic novel. And, yesterday it was presented to dozens of adoring Serb extremists in Belgrade. Mr Karadzic's book, Miraculous Chronicle of the Night , was presented in the Nikola Pasic bookstore, known for its collection of vitriolic Serb literature. Across town another book, written by Mira Markovic, wife of the former Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic, was launched from a press centre run by the Serbian government. Neither of the authors could show their faces because they have been on the run for years. Yet, they both retain support and admirers turned up by the dozen yesterday. "Radovan will not be here with us today, as he is far away both from his friends and enemies," said Miroslav Toholj, who published Mr Karadzic's book and who described the work as an "autobiography and a love novel". The book is set in a town named "S", easily recognised as Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and documents the romance between a Bosnian Serb psychiatrist and his wife during the 1970s and 1980s. Many of the figures who came to dominate Balkan politics in the 1990s are said to be identifiable, while the cover shows Mr Karadzic in civilian clothes. A psychiatrist, he loved to describe himself as a poet, and has published a dozen books in 20 years. Mr Toholj said "the authenticity of the work is under no doubt". Mr Karadzic began writing it before the Bosnian war and finished it last August, Mr Tohojl said, adding that he received the manuscript by e-mail. Mr Karadzic's whereabouts remain a secret, but he is believed to be hiding in the border regions of eastern Bosnia and northern Montenegro. Yesterday's presentation came after the Bosnian Serb authorities admitted, for the first time, to the full scale of the massacre of 7,000 Muslims in 1995. An investigative commission reported last week that more than 7,000 Muslims were slaughtered in Srebrenica when Serb forces overran the enclave. It was Europe's worst atrocity since the Second World War. Many Serbs deny the crime took place and consider Mr Karadzic a "war hero". "Radovan is okay and he is healthy," his brother Luka also said yesterday. Almost as productive has been Mrs Markovic, who fled the country in February 2003, and is well known by the nickname "Lady Macbeth of the Balkans". Her latest book, entitled Keep this Book and printed by her almost dead leftist JUL party, carries a series of interviews she gave to foreign and domestic writers. Her friend, Ljubisa Ristic, described it as "significant". Mrs Markovic is believed to be living in Moscow, with her son Marko Milosevic, who is infamous for war profiteering during his fathr's rule. Most of her books have dealt with her reflections on war, peace, family and flowers. During her husband's rule, her diaries ran in some magazines and were regarded as "political horoscopes". )

www.isn.ethz.ch 20 Oct 2004 NATO arrests Bosnian Serb after shootout ISN SECURITY WATCH (20/10/04) - Bosnia’s newly formed Agency for Protection and Investigation (SIPA), backed by NATO-led Stabilization Forces (SFOR) troops, arrested suspected Bosnian Serb war criminal Nedjo Samardzic after a brief shootout in the southern town of Bileca. Samardzic, who is wanted for war crimes in the eastern town of Foca at the beginning of the 1992-1995 war in Bosnia, opened fire on SIPA and SFOR forces as he attempted to escape. Samardzic was seriously wounded in the shootout, according to local media reports. The suspect was reportedly exiting his residential building with his wife and child at the time, a local official told reporters. “When he saw soldiers coming out of a white van, he knew he was about to be arrested, and started to shoot his pistol,” the official said. Samardzic was transported to the Sarajevo University Clinic where he is being guarded by SFOR soldiers. The Sarajevo Canton Prosecutors Office indicted Samardzic in September 2002 and The Hague-based International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) gave local authorities the green light for the charges, the arrest, and the pending trial in a local court. Samardzic’s brother Zoran is also listed on the same indictment, but SIPA and SFOR failed to find him at his only known address. From the end of the war until they were charged with war crimes, Nedjo and Zoran worked as police officers in Bileca. They were fired by international authorities when the indictments were issued against them. After taking control over Foca in April 1992, Bosnian Serb authorities closed what was then the country’s biggest prison, executing all Bosniak and Croat prisoners and releasing all Serb prisoners, who later joined the Bosnian Serb army, paramilitary units, and police forces. Both Nedjo and Zoran had been prisoners there, with Nedjo serving a sentence for murder. Bakira Hasecic, president of the “Woman-Victims of War” nongovernmental organization, said the Samardzic brothers had raped at least six women between the ages of 14 and 21. “They kept them locked in some private house in the village of Miljevina, near Foca, and together with three men, whose names we knew, raped them for five months. One victim recognized Nedjo Samardzic after his identification card fell on the floor in that house,” said Hasecic. At a Tuesday press conference, the interior minister of the Serb-controlled Republika Srpska entity, Darko Matijasevic, said he had no information about the arrest. Republika Srpska police forces arrived at the scene after the shootout and arrest. Several hundred residents of Bileca protested against the arrest. (By Bakir Rahmanovic in Sarajevo)

AFP 20 Oct 2004 War crimes suspect injured in shootout with NATO in "very serious condition" SARAJEVO (AFP) Oct 20, 2004 A Bosnian Serb war crimes suspect wounded by NATO-led peacekeepers in an attempt to arrest him underwent head surgery and his condition is very serious, a Sarajevo hospital doctor said on Wednesday. "His head was operated on Tuesday night," doctor Lidija Lincender told AFP, adding that Nedjo Samardzic suffered injuries in the back of his head and in the chest as well. "His condition is very serious. His counsciouness is reduced." Samardzic was injured on Tuesday in the shootout with the NATO-led Stabilisation Force (SFOR) troops who were trying to arrest him in the southeastern town of Bileca. SFOR said that Samardzic, who had been indicted in 2002 by a Sarajevo court for war crimes in the eastern town of Foca during Bosnia's 1992-95 war, fired at the troops who were trying to arrest them. Meanwhile, the Bosnian Serb SRNA news agency quoted Samardzic's wife as saying that her husband had not fired back at the troops, but instead started running away. "They shot him in the back," she said. SFOR in Sarajevo was not available on Wednesday to comment. Since the end of Bosnia's war, SFOR has arrested over 20 war crimes fugitives, mainly Serbs wanted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague. At least two suspects have been killed during arrest operations.

www.fena.ba 21 Oct 2004 (16:30) OHR WELCOMES KARADZIC, MLADIC AND GOTOVINA ASSET FREEZE SARAJEVO, October 21 (FENA) - OHR welcomes the position taken by the authorities of BiH, Serbia and Montenegro and Croatia in which they declare that they share the objectives of the Council of the EU on their Common Position on further measures, which are to support the effective implementation of the mandate of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslav (ICTY). Effectively this declaration will freeze the assets of the most notorious individuals indicted of war crimes and who remain at large; Radovan Karadzic, Ratko Mladic and Ante Gotovina in these states. It is now up to the respective institutions and authorities in these sovereign states to find the mechanisms that will ensure that state policy fully supports and confirms the EU's common position. The European future of BiH depends on its willingness to co-operate with, support and uphold the ICTY. Given BiH's tragic past it is this country that has a special interest in promoting these measures. The OHR hopes that BiH's institutions will consider taking the lead in promoting innovate measures such as this in the future, by for example, extending this asset freeze to all those indicted of war crimes but who fail to turn themselves into the authorities. This declaration is an important signal for the EU of BiH's intention to support the work of the ICTY and to meet its international obligations. It would be most serious if, at a later stage, it became apparent that institutions were to allow individuals or organisations to act in a way that breaks this commitment. (Fena) jc


NYT 17 Oct 2004 Accused of Killings, He Still Gets Back Pay By JANE PERLEZ A United Nations employee charged by a war crimes investigator with killing some of his colleagues during the Rwanda genocide in 1994 has been awarded 13 months' back pay by a United Nations panel on the ground that he was unfairly dismissed. The award, by the United Nations Administrative Tribunal, was made on Sept. 30 after another United Nations board recommended that the employee, Callixte Mbarushimana, be paid for six months. Dissatisfied with the first judgment, Mr. Mbarushimana appealed to the tribunal for higher compensation, and won. The decision has incensed other United Nations officials who worked in Rwanda during and after the genocide and has embarrassed senior officials at headquarters. Mr. Mbarushimana, who now lives in France, was accused in an indictment of directing or taking part in the killing of 32 people, including United Nations colleagues, during the orgy of killing in Rwanda 10 years ago. He was never prosecuted, even though the indictment included eye-witness accounts. The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda dropped the indictment, apparently on the ground that Mr. Mbarushimana was not one of the leaders of the genocide. He has consistently denied any involvement in the genocide. Mr. Mbarushimana continued to hold two jobs with the United Nations after the Rwanda killings but was finally dismissed in 2001. Neither of the awards has been paid to him, a United Nations spokesman said. The investigator, Tony Greig, who collected the evidence against Mr. Mbarushimana, said in an interview that he wanted to shame the United Nations into reopening the case. "The court must revisit the decision not to file the indictment," said Mr. Greig, a criminal defense lawyer now based in New Zealand. He said he planned to make a formal submission to the war crimes tribunal requesting a reopening of the case. "The issue of the murder of U.N. colleagues is of such gravity that it is difficult to accept that an individual against whom such allegations have been made would be indirectly exonerated through an administrative procedure," a draft of Mr. Greig's submission says. In his submission, Mr. Greig says there was "direct evidence" that Mr. Mbarushimana led and ordered the killings of "about 10 adults, women and children" of the Umutoniwase family. The head of the family, Augustin Ntashamaje, was a driver with the United Nations World Food Program. The submission also says there was "similarly strong evidence" that Mr. Mbarushimana directed the killing of the Rugema family. One of the sons was a driver for the United Nations, Mr. Greig said. There was also evidence presented that Mr. Mbarushimana manned road blocks at which people were killed. About 800,000Rwandans, mostly of the Tutsi minority, were wiped out in killings orchestrated by the Hutu-led government from April to June 1994. William Orme, a spokesman for the United Nations Development Program, the division for which Mr. Mbarushimana worked, said options were being explored to "most effectively support efforts to prosecute him." "There is a consensus that obviously this case was mishandled,'' Mr. Orme said. "Everybody's focus is to bring this case to justice." But the thicket of rules and divisions of responsibilities at the United Nations are making it difficult to find a way to reopen the case, United Nations officials said. According to an opinion of the International Court of Justice in 1954, for example, the United Nations secretariat does not have the right to appeal or turn down the ruling by the administrative tribunal that awarded Mr. Mbarushimana the back pay, said a United Nations spokesman, Stephane Dujarric. The legal department at the United Nations was examining the possibility that Secretary General Kofi Annan or the United Nations Development Program might sponsor a review of the case at the war crimes tribunal, Mr. Dujarric said. Another option could be to use a resolution adopted by the Security Council last year after the bombing of the United Nations headquarters in Baghdad that said those who organized attacks against United Nations officials could be charged with war crimes, another United Nations spokesman said. Reached in France by telephone yesterday, Mr. Mbarushimana said he was pleased the administrative tribunal "recognized that the U.N. committed a grave error in suspending me in this illegal way." But, he said, the tribunal should be "punished" because it had had not awarded him enough. "I have no recourse to any appeal," he said. He was angered, he said, that United Nations spokesmen had said "things in public to the press which reflected badly on my reputation and can't be repaired." Now a refugee in France, he was looking for work, he said.

BBC 23 Oct 2004 France considers Pinochet trial Gen Pinochet has said he had no knowledge of the killings French prosecutors have called for former Chilean leader Augusto Pinochet to be tried over the disappearance of four French citizens in the 1970s. Along with 20 other former military officers, he is suspected of having ordered their arrest and detention. General Pinochet, 88, is currently under house arrest in Chile. French investigating magistrate Sophie Clement is expected to decide within six weeks whether he and the others should be tried in absentia. Preliminary charges against Mr Pinochet hold him responsible of "illegal confinement accompanied or followed by acts of torture" of the French men. The disappeared include Georges Klein, the doctor of President Salvador Allende, who died in a military coup led by Gen Pinochet in September 1973. KEY DATES IN PINOCHET'S LIFE 1973: Leads coup against left-wing President Salvador Allende 1988: Loses plebiscite on rule 1990: Steps down as president 1998: Retires as army commander-in-chief. Arrested in UK at Spain's request 2000: Allowed to return to Chile 2004: Supreme Court strips his legal immunity Profile: Augusto Pinochet Pinochet case: Timeline Gen Pinochet is also to be questioned over the disappearance of a priest, Etienne Pesle, in 1974 and of leftists Alphonse Chanfreau and Lean-Yves Claudet-Fernandez in 1975. At least 3,000 people were killed during his years in power, but the former military ruler denies any role in Operation Condor, a scheme in which South American dictatorships eliminated their left-wing critics. In September, the Chilean authorities stripped Mr Pinochet of his immunity from prosecution over Operation Condor. Doctors who examined him to decide whether he was fit to stand trial came to different conclusions, with one diagnosing mild dementia. Chilean judge Juan Guzman will now decide whether Mr Pinochet can face charges of kidnapping and killing his opponents.

AP 29 Oct 2004 French terror victims' families seek questioning of Arafat Paris, Oct. 29 (AP): The families of French victims of terrorist attacks carried out by Hamas in Israel plan to ask judicial authorities to question Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, attorney Michel Calvo, said today. Calvo, who represents the victims' families, said they would present their request to France's chief anti-terror judge, Jean-Louis Brugiere. They base their claim on "murders in connection with a terrorist enterprise," Calvo told reporters in Paris. Arafat will be treated at a military hospital just outside Paris for a still-undisclosed ailment. "In the next few days, we are going to ask Judge Bruguiere to question Mr. Arafat, as soon as his physical condition allows it," the attorney added. France's LCI tlevision said the families of seven French victims were involved in the action. The pursuit of any criminal probe against Arafat is bound to complicate the French Government's diplomatically sensitive decision to provide him with medical treatment. In March of last year, the victims of Hamas attacks in Israel sought criminal charges in Paris for "murders, genocide and crimes against humanity." They named Arafat as one of those allegedly responsible.


DPA 5 Oct 2004 At Munich war crimes trial, militia man says he was tortured 5 October 2004 MUNICH - A former member of a Nazi-led militia told a German war crimes trial Tuesday he had been tortured by communist authorities into a fake confession in 1962 and knew nothing whatever about alleged 1945 massacres. The Czech was the sole former member of the Edelweiss militia who agreed to testify at the Munich trial of Ladislav Niznansky, which may turn out the world's last trial of World War II atrocities. Niznansky, 86, is accused of massacring Slovak villagers and Jews during a hunt for partisans. He and Tuesday's witness were recruits in Edelweiss, a half-German, half-Slovak force that on paper answered to Slovakia's puppet government. The witness, 80, said of the alleged massacres in January and February 1945: "I never heard a thing, and I never knew a thing." He said he had deserted from the unit in December 1944. Niznansky, who obtained German citizenship in 1996, has confirmed to the court that he was a captain in the Slovak section of Edelweiss but denies the killings. The witness, who was handed a 14-year jail term at the same trial, said Tuesday he confessed to save his life. "They tried to break my neck using the arm of a chair," he said, rejecting the 1962 indictment as propaganda. He said his signature on interrogation notes was forged and a tape played to the Slovak court of him confessing had been manipulated. "They stitched together different dates, places and persons," he said, and added, "I have never discussed it with Niznansky." The defence lawyer, Steffen Ufer, warned the court not to trust the 1962 court verdict saying it could not be used as a "one-to-once source of evidence". Niznansky had not been present then to oppose the charges. At the end of the war, Niznansky moved to Germany, where he was in the research section at Radio Free Europe. German authorities dropped an earlier investigation against him because they did not trust the evidence put to the 1962 Slovak trial.

Guardian UK 29 Oct 2004 German politician faces new charges over massacre in Italy John Hooper in Rome and Luke Harding in Berlin Friday October 29, 2004 The Guardian A prominent left-wing German politician faces charges of mass murder for his alleged role in one of Italy's most gruesome wartime atrocities. Military prosecutors in La Spezia have sent a formal caution to 89-year-old Klaus Konrad, a former Social Democrat MP and legal adviser to Willy Brandt, a former German chancellor. The caution, a copy of which has been seen by the Guardian, warns Mr Konrad that he is formally under investigation on suspicion of causing the deaths of 61 people "needlessly and without a justified motive". The prosecutors accuse him of taking part in a string of massacres in 1944 near the Tuscan city of Arezzo. They say some of the victims were buried alive and others were blown apart with explosives. Many were tortured before they were killed. The dead included children and women, one of whom was pregnant. In an interview to be televised last night by the ARD, the German public broadcast system, Mr Konrad admitted only to having been present when the civilians were tortured. He expressed regret for the killings but said he had done so "only since the Italians have got me by the scruff of the neck". ARD said its researchers had found British files containing accounts by witnesses who said Mr Konrad had personally supervised the executions that followed the torture. The massacres were among many carried out by the German army as troops retreated along the Italian peninsula in an effort to crush or punish partisan resistance. Details of the killings remained hidden for half a century because the Italian authorities were keen not to damage relations with federal Germany during the cold war. In 1944, Mr Konrad was a second lieutenant in a grenadiers unit, the 274th regiment, but, according to the Italian daily paper Corriere della Sera, he was no ordinary soldier. The paper says that, by the age of 19, he had become a member of the Nazi party's brown-shirted storm troops, the SA. After the war, Mr Konrad joined West Germany's centre-left Social Democrat party. He rose to become, first, a regional MP for the northern state of Schleswig-Holstein, and then a member of the federal parliament. The notification sent to his seaside home says he is under formal investigation on two counts of mass murder and one of unnecessarily torching civilian homes. The first set of 13 killings occurred in and near the village of San Polo. The remaining 48 people all died in San Polo. In the interview due to be screened last night, Mr Konrad said the commander of his battalion, Wolf Ewert, ordered him to interrogate 50 or so suspected partisans left in a cellar. The Italian military prosecutors said these people were beaten with "staves, rubber hoses and rifle butts" before being taken to another house nearby for execution. Mr Konrad admitted the Italians were tortured and told his commander that the prisoners were partisans. But he said it was Ewert who gave the execution order. Agreeing with the decision, he and two other German officers sat down to discuss the "modalities" of how the captives should be killed. ARD quoted witnesses saying that six men belonging to a partisan group were shot first. Sixteen prisoners in a second group were dumped in a grave at right angles to each other and buried in sand. Some are thought to have suffocated. In last night's interview Mr Konrad admitted the people were also blown up with explosives to prevent the allies, then closing in rapidly on the German frontline, from discovering what had taken place. In Italy, he was reported as telling his interviewers: "Someone had the idea of blowing them up with dynamite to hide the traces of torture." In 1967, German prosecutors in Giessen began an investigation into the San Polo massacre, charging Mr Konrad, and his wartime commander and five other officers, with murder. In 1972, however, a court found there was no proof of murder, only of manslaughter. Under German law the charge of manslaughter had expired and the case against Mr Konrad was dropped. After retiring as a backbench MP, he continued his political career at local level. He now lives in Scharbeutz, north-east of Hamburg. Ewert died 10 years ago.


UPI 18 Oct 2004 Hungarian deputy quits over Holocaust row Budapest, Hungary, Oct. 18 (UPI) -- A Hungarian socialist parliamentarian resigned Monday after making a joke about the Holocaust. Janos Zuschlag, 27, was caught on camera last week at an outdoor Holocaust memorial gathering appearing to make light of the suffering of Jews in the Nazi genocide of World War II. Hungary's Duna TV caught Zuschlag reacting to a bystander's comment about how cold conditions must have been for the victims of the Holocaust. He then said, laughing: "For them, it wasn't cold any more." The comments exploded in the Hungarian media and Zuschlag has apologized for the offensive nature of his remarks. In mid-1944 nearly half-a-million Hungarian Jews were deported to Nazi death camps, forming one of the last major contingents of European Jews to die in a genocide that cost 6 million lives.

Netherlands - ICTY

Reuters 11 Oct 2004 Hague Prosecutor 'Set Warcrimes Test' for Serbia BELGRADE (Reuters) - The handover of a Bosnian Serb war crimes suspect to The Hague at the weekend was a deliberate cooperation test for Serbia arranged by U.N. chief prosecutor Carla del Ponte, Belgrade radio reported on Monday. It was set in order to determine whether the government is sincere about complying with international justice, despite evidence of delay and reluctance on the part of conservative Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica. Citing a government source, independent station B-92 said Belgrade had passed the test late on Saturday by transferring the former chief of Bosnian Serb military security, Ljubisa Beara, to the United Nations war crimes tribunal. Contrary to the official version, he had not contacted the authorities with an offer to surrender, but was located and arrested thanks to information passed on by Del Ponte, it said. She had told Kostunica of Beara's whereabouts during a visit to Belgrade last week, saying her tip would test his ``willingness to demonstrate that authorities were ready to cooperate.'' Tribunal officials were not immediately available to comment on the report. Prosecutors were furious with Belgrade in July when Croatian Serb war crimes suspect Goran Hadzic was warned by someone in the government and fled his imminent arrest. Cooperation is seen as key for Serbia's aspirations to join the European Union and NATO in the future. Washington and Brussels both went out of their way to welcome Beara's arrest. EU foreign ministers, meeting in Luxembourg on Monday, were to hear a report from Del Ponte on Balkan states' cooperation with the court. Beara is indicted for genocide at the 1995 Srebrenica massacre of over 7,000 Muslims at the end of the Bosnia war. He was head of security and close to top fugitive General Ratko Mladic. Mladic and his wartime boss Radovan Karadzic are the big fish still at large nine years after the end of the 1992-95 conflict in which more than 200,000 people died. Del Ponte believes Mladic is hiding in Serbia and could be arrested if the government had the political will to face down ultranationalists who regard him as a hero. The issue is splitting the Serbian leadership. President Boris Tadic says Serbia is at a crossroads and must comply for its own good. Mladic's handover would, almost at a stroke, remove remaining obstacles to Serbia's integration into Europe and access to international credits. And Beara's transfer would make a perfect template for the surrender of Mladic. Its manner and timing were carefully planned, unlike in some previous cases. The arrest was kept secret and there were no supporters at the airport to see him off as most of the country watched an important football match late on Saturday night. Such tactics may reflect government anxiety to minimize the scope for public protest at the handover of men viewed as heroes by hard-liners, who might react violently.

VOA 10 Oct 2004 Bosnian Muslim Genocide Suspect Extradited to Hague Ljubisa Beara The United Nations War Crimes Tribunal at the Hague has taken custody of a Bosnian Serb accused of genocide in 1995 against Muslims in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Ljubisa Beara was extradited to the court late Saturday by Serb authorities soon after he was taken into custody. The War Crimes Tribunal has indicted Mr. Beara, former chief of security for the Bosnian Serb army, for the massacre of Muslim prisoners in Srebrenica, and for forcing thousands of women and children to leave the U.N.-protected Bosnian Muslim enclave before the murders. Mr. Beara also is charged with aiding another indicted war crimes suspect at Srebrenica, former Bosnian Serb General Ratko Mladic, who remains at large. An estimated 8,000 Muslim men and boys died at Srebrenica.

Reuters 26 Oct 2004 U.S. Denies Report It Wants to Sideline U.N. Tribunal Tue Oct 26, 2004 03:07 PM ET By Douglas Hamilton BELGRADE (Reuters) - The United States on Tuesday dismissed a U.S. newspaper report that Washington was insisting war crimes cases linked to the Balkan conflicts should go before domestic courts instead of the U.N. tribunal in The Hague. "(Washington) continues to support the (tribunal's) efforts to bring to justice those who have committed serious violations of international humanitarian law," said a statement issued by the U.S. embassy in Belgrade. An article in Sunday's Washington Times, widely reported in Serbia, quoted U.S. Undersecretary of State for Arms Control John Bolton as saying President Bush was fed up with the U.N. tribunal's chief prosecutor Carla del Ponte. "There is a very real risk that the (tribunal) prosecutions will not resolve the situation in the Balkans but will create new animosities that lead to tensions," said Bolton. "Washington is insisting that war crimes cases relating to the Balkan wars of the 1990s be tried either in domestic courts or be given an amnesty," the article said. It said this was a "dramatic change in U.S. policy toward the (tribunal) but more importantly, it is a fatal blow to the power and credibility of Mrs. Del Ponte." HATE FIGURE In Serbia, where del Ponte is a hate figure, the government has been under Western pressure to deliver suspects such as Bosnian Serb wartime leader Radovan Karadzic to the U.N. tribunal or remain in the political and economic cold. Any suspicion that a change of policy was imminent in Washington could have wide-reaching political implications for Serbia's leadership, which has been deeply divided on how far to comply with Western demands. Some Serbian newspapers appeared to seize on the article as proof that the country was off the hook. Others printed a State Department denial alongside the report. Serbian commentators following the U.S. election campaign lean toward the belief that a second Bush term would be better for their country. There are an estimated 1.5 million people of Serb origin in the United States where opinion polls predict a close contest in next week's presidential election between Bush and Democrat challenger John Kerry. The U.S. embassy said Washington supported the U.N. tribunal financially and diplomatically and urged the governments of Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia and Bosnia to fulfil legal obligations by cooperating fully with the U.N. court. That meant the arrest and transfer of suspects such as Karadzic and his military chief Ratko Mladic "for whom the tribunal's doors will always remain open," the embassy said. It said this would be a pre-requisite for further integration with the West. No immediate comment was available from del Ponte.

www.washingtontimes.com 24 Oct 2004 Balkan justice joust By Jeffrey T. Kuhner Published October 24, 2004 The Bush administration is now demanding that the chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, Carla Del Ponte, bring her prosecutions to an end. Washington is insisting that war crimes cases relating to the Balkan wars of the 1990s be tried either in domestic courts or be given an amnesty. This shift not only marks a dramatic change in U.S. policy toward the ICTY, but more importantly, it is a fatal blow to the power and credibility of Mrs. Del Ponte. In a recent interview, Undersecretary of State for Arms Control John Bolton told me Washington is deeply concerned that the ICTY, rather than fostering ethnic reconciliation, has emerged as a threat to regional stability. "There is a very real risk that the ICTY prosecutions will not resolve the situation in the Balkans," Mr. Bolton said, "but will create new animosities that lead to tensions in the future." He emphasized the Bush administration is demanding war crimes cases at The Hague be sent back to national domestic courts. Mr. Bolton and other senior State Department officials are finally realizing what Mrs. Del Ponte and her fellow left-wing globalists have refused to acknowledge: The ICTY has degenerated into a politicized tribunal that has failed to live up to its original mandate. The irony is that the Clinton administration was largely responsible for creating the ICTY. Washington, however, now realizes that it has unleashed a Frankenstein monster. Instead of being an impartial body that seeks to punish those who committed or ordered war crimes, the tribunal has become a vehicle by which Mrs. Del Ponte has sought to rewrite the history of the Balkan wars. She has abused her office by issuing deeply flawed and weak indictments. The most obvious example is the bogus indictment against fugitive Croatian Gen. Ante Gotovina, the commander of a 1995 military operation that effectively ended the Croatian-Serbian conflict. As Mr. Bolton notes, the problem with the ICTY is that it has no democratic accountability. Hence, there are no checks or balances against the misuse of power. Therefore, the Bush administration has concluded the only solution is to kick war crimes cases back to national domestic courts. "That is why our strategy with respect to the ICTY is to bring these prosecutions to an end and to return responsibility to Serbia, Croatia and to the other nations," Mr. Bolton said, "because, after all, many of the alleged crimes were carried out in their name and they need to confront that reality. They need to make the decisions whether to prosecute or not to prosecute Serbs or Croats respectively." The senior Bush administration official emphasized that "responsibility" for trying alleged war crimes "should rest on the shoulders of the people who have to live with the decisions they make." Ultimately, the United States rightly believes that the ICTY has become not only an undemocratic institution, but a direct threat to the development of democracy throughout the former Yugoslavia. Its greatest flaw is that, by virtue of being an international tribunal with little accountability, it is retarding the growth of independent judicial bodies and the rule of law within Croatia, Serbia and Bosnia. For viable democracies to take root in the stony soil of the Balkans, it is imperative to cultivate fully functioning legal institutions. "One of the downsides of any distant court is that it takes away responsibility, and I don't think that is conducive to the political maturation of societies that we hope will become democratic and realize that they have to confront actions that their prior governments took," Mr. Bolton said. "So that is why our approach to the ICTY and with the Rwanda tribunal is to make and create institutions in the respective countries and to turn that authority back over to them." The record is now clear: The ICTY has been a dismal failure. The trial of the former Serbian strongman, Slobodan Milosevic, continues to drag on with no end in sight. Notorious Bosnian Serb leaders Gen. Ratko Mladic and Radovan Karadzic remain at large. The Gotovina indictment threatens to destabilize Croatia. Bosnian Muslims and Kosovo Albanians feel they will never receive justice. Serbs perceive the tribunal as being biased against them. Mrs. Del Ponte has managed to accomplish what no other person has before: Temporarily unite the warring peoples of the former Yugoslavia in their opposition to her. She is the Lady Macbeth of the Balkans, an unscrupulous political climber with delusions of grandeur. And like Lady Macbeth, Mrs. Del Ponte's lust for power has led to her downfall. Washington is right to yank her off the stage. Jeffrey T. Kuhner is editor of the Ripon Forum magazine and communications director at the Ripon Society, a Republican think tank.

White Plains Journal News, NY 30 Oct 2004 www.thejournalnews.com African refugee lands job with U.N. court By DIANA BELLETTIERI FOR THE JOURNAL NEWS (Original publication: October 30, 2004) When junior officers in the Sierra Leone army overthrew the elected government in May 1997, Gloria Atiba-Davies was at the top of the junta's revenge list. A year earlier, Atiba-Davies had prosecuted the junta's leader, Maj. Johnny Paul Koroma, for leading an earlier coup attempt. After he came to power, Koroma attempted to kidnap Atiba-Davies three times before reducing her house in Freetown, the capital, to ashes. Luckily, Atiba-Davies had already fled the country. "I'm just thankful that I got out at the time I did," said Atiba-Davies, 49, from her home in Yonkers. "I have absolutely no doubt in my mind that I would have been gone a long time ago. That's what used to bring tears to my eyes. Just the thought of what they would have done to me." It's been more than seven years since Atiba-Davies strolled through the mountains and relaxed on the warm beaches of her beloved Sierra Leone. She said her anger for being forced into exile has been transformed into a longing for justice. To that end, Atiba-Davies leaves Yonkers today for the Netherlands, where she will perform criminal investigations for the International Criminal Court in The Hague. She will primarily handle cases from Uganda. The ICC was established in 1998 by the United Nations to ensure that the worst international crimes, such as genocide, did not go unpunished. The court does not replace national courts, and will prosecute cases only if a state is unwilling or unable to do so itself. Ninety-seven countries have joined the ICC, 27 in Africa. Born and raised in the port city of Freetown, Atiba-Davies was taught to value education from an early age. She attended Christian missionary schools through high school, then traveled to the University of London to receive her bachelor of law degree at the age of 21. She returned to Freetown two weeks after passing England's bar examination in 1981. Atiba-Davies quickly excelled as a criminal prosecutor. By 1997, she headed Sierra Leone's Department of Public Prosecution and was named principal state counsel, the highest rank for a civil servant. It was in this high-profile position that Atiba-Davies prosecuted Koroma and eight other military officers for treason beginning in 1996. The case, however, was never completed. On May 25, 1997, the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council joined with the Revolutionary United Front to topple the government of President Ahmad Tejan Kabbah and open the central prison. All nine military officers on trial rose to positions of power. Atiba-Davies was officially wanted by the state. Fatefully, she had traveled to Sweden to represent her country at a law conference five days before the coup. "I have never been back to Sierra Leone since I left with one piece of luggage in May of '97," she said. "It was never my intention to leave." Atiba-Davies' entire life remained in Freetown, including her two sons. Only 12 and 11 years old during the coup, the boys fled with a family friend to Guinea, Sierra Leone's northern neighbor. They then traveled farther north to The Gambia, where a former Sierra Leonean judge had opened her home to refugees. The boys lived in this cramped but safe shelter with more than 40 other refugees for 18 months. During that time, Atiba-Davies filed for asylum in England. Through the process, Atiba-Davies was introduced to officers from England's Ministry of Defense. They were interested in what she knew about the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council, and at one point surprised Atiba-Davies in the West Ferry eatery where she worked with giant maps of Sierra Leone and Freetown. They asked her to identify locations that were safe to land ships and aircraft. About two weeks later, in February 1998, Britain assisted the Nigerian-led Economic Community of West African States Cease-Fire Monitoring Group with military operations to remove the AFRC government and reinstate Kabbah. "It was the right thing to do," Atiba-Davies said. "They had to get those rebels out of there." By January 1999, however, the rebels again attacked and captured Freetown. They are accused of recruiting child fighters, keeping girls as sex slaves and mutilating civilians. The Central Intelligence Agency estimates that tens of thousands were killed and more than 2 million displaced during the fighting from 1991 to 2002. This was more than a third of the population. "This of course had incredibly destabilizing and long-term effects on family and social structures," said John Metzler, professor of African studies at Michigan State University. "People's livelihoods were turned upside down." Distraught from watching her country crumble under the strains of constant violence, Atiba-Davies returned to Africa in February 1999. She pulled her passport from asylum consideration in England and flew to The Gambia, where she and her boys began a new life. All she could do was laugh as she described the joy of being reunited with her sons. "You just couldn't imagine," she said. In 2000, Lutheran Family and Community Services in the United States began a refugee and immigration program for Sierra Leoneans with relatives in America. Atiba-Davies had several relatives in America, including her mother, sister and daughter. After interviews and background checks, Atiba-Davies and her sons received refugee status in the United States. They moved to Yonkers and have lived there since. During the next four years, Atiba-Davies struggled to support her family. She considered taking the New York bar examination, but proof of her law degree had been burned with her house in Freetown, and her university had destroyed all transcripts prior to 1990 when it transferred records to computers. That meant she would have to repeat law school, which was out of the question. After drifting through various administrative jobs, she decided she would become a paralegal. Destiny, however, held a different path for Atiba-Davies. She was offered the position at the ICC last month. The job involves preparing evidence, gathering witnesses and reviewing testimony. "I'm very proud of Gloria," said Amela Muftarevic, Atiba-Davies' case manager at Lutheran Family and Community Services in Manhattan. "I know that she will not be helping just one person; many people will benefit from the work she will do." Atiba-Davies said she hopes her work will foster peace. "I hope that this court will be a deterrence for warlords and heads of states who think they can do anything with impunity," she said. "If it's a deterrence, I can see the world becoming a more peaceful place."


www.norwaypost.no 22. Oktober 2004 Persons suspected of Rwanda genocide may hide in Norway The Rwanda Public Prosecutor, Jean Basco, believes that between 15 and 20 persons suspected of having participated in the 1994 genocide may be living in Norway. Norwegian authorities have now offered to help find these persons. The persons who have fled to Norway are said to have been central in the planning and carrying out of the slaughter of nearly one million people in Rwanda in 1994, seen as the worst case of genocide in human history. A man from Rwanda who for obvious reasons wants to remain anonymous, says to NRK that he has several times seen people who took part in the killings in his homeland, now walking the streets of Oslo. He also knows who they are and where they live. (NRK) Rolleiv Solholm .


AFP 20 Oct 2004 25,000 Russian troops died in two Chechen wars: rights group MOSCOW, Oct 20 (AFP) - Some 25,000 Russian troops have died in the two wars Moscow has waged on Chechen separatists in the past decade, the chief of a respected watchdog groups said Wednesday in an estimate more than double the official figures. "In 10 years of war, Russian federal forces have lost 25,000 soldiers, officers and interior ministry staff in Chechnya, who were killed, died of their wounds or committed suicide in relation to the war," Valentina Melnikova, the head of Russia's Soldiers' Mothers Committee, told Moscow Echo radio. "The loss of the Chechen people can be measured in tens, maybe even hundreds of thousands of dead, in ruined lives, in the destruction that rules on the Chechen territory," she added. Statistics on the two wars that Russia has fought with Chechen separatists -- first in 1994-96 and from October 1999 to the present -- are sketchy and vary according to the source. The military says that about 10,000 troops have been killed as a result of the conflicts, a figure that is disputed by rights groups. Rights groups have estimated that tens of thousands of civilians and an unknown number of rebels have died as a result of the two wars. Russia withdrew from the Caucasus republic at the end of the first conflict in 1996, when Chechnya got de facto independence, but went in three years later in what was meant to be a quick anti-terror operation that today continues to claim lives on nearly a daily basis.


NYT 1 Oct 2004 U.S. Aide Faults Serbia for Not Handing Over War Crimes Suspect By NICHOLAS WOOD Published: October 1, 2004 ELGRADE, Serbia, Sept. 30 - A senior American diplomat expressed frustration on Thursday that Serbia had yet to turn over a leading war crimes suspect months after the election of a new president who had promised "full cooperation" with the international tribunal at The Hague. Advertisement Marc Grossman, the under secretary of state for political affairs, said the Serbian government had made no progress toward arresting the former commander of the Bosnian Serb Army, Gen. Ratko Mladic. General Mladic was indicted in 1995 on charges of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity stemming from his actions during the 1992-95 conflict in Bosnia. American diplomats believe that he is hiding in Serbia. "Sadly, the obligations that Belgrade has to The Hague remain unmet," Mr. Grossman told reporters after meeting with Foreign Minister Vuk Draskovic. "Mladic is still at large." While European governments and the United States have repeatedly called for General Mladic's arrest, Mr. Grossman's remarks reflected the growing disappointment with Serbia among Western diplomats since the election of a reformist president in June. The inauguration of Boris Tadic, who during his election campaign had promised "full cooperation" with the war crimes tribunal, had raised expectations of possible arrests. "Ninety days have gone by since," Mr. Grossman said. "I hate to think that another 90 days will go by and another 90 days." Senior Western diplomats said they had hoped Mr. Tadic would call directly for General Mladic's arrest, something he has not done so far. While criticizing the government, Mr. Grossman said he welcomed the announcement by a Serbian court on Wednesday that it had issued indictments for four police and army generals also wanted by The Hague. He repeated an earlier offer that the United States might support Serbian demands that the four be tried in Serbia, if Mr. Mladic is handed over soon. The United States and the European Union have already imposed an array of penalties on Serbia for its failure to cooperate more closely with the tribunal. Congress has voted to suspend $70 million of aid to Serbia, and the Serbian government is unable to seek loans from the International Monetary Fund. Serbia's applications for membership in NATO's Partnership for Peace program and the European Union also remain blocked. The Serbian government remains deeply divided on policy toward the tribunal. Although President Tadic has expressed the need to cooperate with the court, Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica has said war crimes suspects should be tried in Serbia. Some government officials warn that the arrests of men many Serbs still regard as war heroes could further strengthen the nationalistic Serbian Radical Party, the largest party in Parliament. "It's not only sensitivities of the electorate," said Pedrag Simic, a political scientist at Belgrade University and a former foreign policy adviser to Mr. Kostunica. "It is also the question of whether we have made a new state apparatus capable of dealing with these questions." Many police and judicial officials remain unchanged since the time of the former Yugoslav president, Slobodan Milosevic, he said.

AP 30 Oct 2004 17 mass graves alleged in Serbia By Jovana Gec BELGRADE -- Serbian territory has 17 mass graves containing bodies of ethnic Albanians slain during Kosovo's 1998-99 war, a former interior minister said yesterday, accusing current authorities of a coverup. Dusan Mihajlovic, who served as police chief in the government that ousted former president Slobodan Milosevic in 2000, said Serbia's conservative authorities are reluctant to prosecute those responsible for the killings. Mihajlovic, who was in charge until early this year, said in a statement that "police have done their part of the job. They have documentation about the crimes that were committed in Kosovo." "You should ask the current authorities why nothing is being done about that," Mihajlovic's statement said. In response, the government said Mihajlovic left "no trace, written or oral," about the alleged mass graves when he handed over his responsibilities as interior minister and head of the police to his successor. The government statement, issued by Interior Ministry officials, also said police are "taking steps to clarify all crimes committed in Kosovo and locate the graves." "If Mihajlovic has any further knowledge or documents [about the graves], he should make them available to the Interior Ministry as soon as possible," the statement added. Milosevic is on trial before the United Nations war crimes tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands, for genocide and crimes against humanity stemming from the 1990s wars in Kosovo, Croatia, and Bosnia. Months before Milosevic was ousted in 2000, the republic's new pro-Western leadership unearthed human remains from at least three sites in Serbia. It accused the regime of ordering the transfer of the bodies to hide traces of atrocities committed in Kosovo in 1999. Police said they were investigating how the bodies, including those of women and children, were taken to central Serbia. About 800 bodies have been exhumed here, including 300 identified through DNA analysis and returned to Kosovo. Security sources said as many as 1,000 Kosovo Albanians were buried in the mass graves in Serbia. "I couldn't sleep well knowing that someone had dug out the graves in Kosovo and transferred them here, under our own windows," Mihajlovic said in his statement. "Until we face the truth about the crimes committed in our name, we will be collective hostages and accomplices. We will have a guilty conscience, and we will live in the past without perspective for a better future."

news.scotsman.com UK 26 Oct 2004 War Crimes Trial Hears Pig Farm Massacre Survivors Two former Croat prisoners of war who narrowly escaped a 1991 massacre of more than 200 fellow POWs at a pig farm in eastern Croatia testified yesterday at a landmark trial of 17 Serb paramilitaries charged in the slaughter. The appearance of Emil Cakalic and Dragutin Berghofer before Serbia’s special war crimes court is the first time that any of the survivors of the Ovcara massacre – which took place in November 1991 – were called in to testify since the proceedings opened in March. The trial is considered a key test of whether Serbia is able to prosecute Serb war crimes suspects. Belgrade has pledged to do that in order to ease some of the pressure from the UN war crimes tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands. While The Hague court is trying three former Yugoslav army officers suspected of orchestrating the Ovcara slayings, the suspects on trial in Belgrade include low-ranking paramilitaries accused of carrying out the massacre. According to the indictment, the Ovcara slaying took part shortly after the fall of the eastern Croatian town of Vukovar during the 1991 Serbo-Croat war. After capturing the city, the Serb soldiers allegedly took prisoner hundreds of people who were hiding in a local hospital, took them to a nearby pig farm and killed them. Their bodies were later dumped into a pit at the farm, the indictment says. Cakalic and Berghofer, both retired Croat army officers, told the court they were saved by Serb friends who took them out of Ovcara to another prison only hours before other prisoners were killed. Cakalic said the prisoners were transferred to Ovcara from the Vukovar hospital in Yugoslav army buses. Upon arriving at the pig farm, the prisoners were first searched and their personal belongings were taken from them, Cakalic said. After that, they were beaten and harassed by the paramilitaries, he added. Both Cakalic and Berghofer singled out one of the defendants, Milan Bulic, as among the people who took part in the beatings, the Beta news agency reported. The indictment alleges the killing of prisoners started in the evening hours of November 20 and lasted for several hours. Cakalic also testified that top army officers, including General Mile Mrksic, who is jailed in The Hague, arrived at Ovcara a few hours after the prisoners were brought in and were present during the beatings. War crimes trials in Serbia became possible only after former President Slobodan Milosevic was ousted in 2000 by a pro-democracy leadership which pledged to prosecute those responsible for atrocities committed during the Balkan wars of the 1990s. Milosevic, who is believed to have fomented the wars, currently is being tried by The Hague tribunal for genocide and crimes against humanity for war crimes committed by his troops in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo.

Serbia - Kosovo

AFP 20 Oct 2004 Ethnic tension, boycott threats loom large over Kosovo vote PRISTINA, Serbia-Montenegro, Oct 20 (AFP) - Kosovo heads to the polls Saturday for its second general election since becoming a UN protectorate in 1999, amid renewed ethnic tension and uncertainty over final status talks scheduled next year. The vote for the 120 seats of the provincial assembly is seen as a test of the international community's efforts to build a multi-ethnic democracy in the southern Serbian province, which has been administered by the United Nations since NATO bombing forced Serbian troops to withdraw in June 1999. But five years after the end of the 1998-99 conflict between Serbian forces and ethnic Albanian separatists, ethnic tensions are again on the rise. The NATO-led peacekeeping force (KFOR) has boosted security for the weekend ballot, parachuting soldiers into potential hot-spots to prevent a repeat of the bloody anti-Serb riots by ethnic Albanian extremists that left 19 people dead in March and drove some 4,000 from their homes. The Serb minority says it is bearing the brunt of a campaign of "ethnic cleansing" by Kosovo's ethnic Albanian majority and, blaming the international community for failing to provide security, has vowed to boycott the poll. Some 1.3 millon people are eligible to vote for deputies in the 120-seat parliament, which has responsibility for day-to-day matters under the more powerful UN administration. Kosovo Albanians, who will win the majority of seats, expect the next parliament to provide, in effect, a provisional government that will prepare for talks next year on their claims for independence from Serbia. Meanwhile the Serbs, who are estimated to make up about 80,000 of Kosovo's two million people, are demanding more autonomy over their local communities and have set up parallel institutions to run their own affairs. But analysts believe a boycott would deprive the Serbs from participating in internationally-supervised talks, tentatively set for mid-2005, over the future status of the province. Analyst Migjen Kelmendi said that while the Serbs would be weakened by a boycott, a successful election would allow the Albanians to go to the talks with a strong mandate and a heightened sense of legitimacy. "By boycotting the polls, Kosovo Serbs could let an important step pass. If they want to be a part of Kosovo society they will have to take part in the discussions over the final status of the province," Kelmendi said. Ignoring international pressure to encourage Kosovo Serbs to vote, Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica has backed the boycott and criticised the UN for ignoring his plan to decentralise local power in the province. But not all Serbs are planning to give up their vote. Oliver Ivanovic, one of the rare Serb politicians who will take part, said the poll was necessary to "improve relations with the Albanians" and to ensure the Serbs have a seat at the talks next year. More than 33 political groups and 30 independent candidates will take part in the election. The latest surveys show that no party will win enough votes to control the parliament and form a government by itself. The main ethnic Albanian parties -- the Democratic League of Kosovo of Kosovo President Ibrahim Rugova and the Democratic Party of Kosovo of former guerrilla leader Hashim Thaci -- are tipped to gain 30 to 40 seats each. But even among the ethnic Albanians there is disillusion. One survey suggested 25 percent of mostly Albanian voters would stay away from the polls due to disappointment with the province's economic stagnation and the failure of politicians to improve standards of living. Veton Surroi, of the newly-founded Ora (Time) party, said Kosovo's economy was on the verge of collapse with unemployment of over 60 percent. "We are six months ahead of a social explosion if the situation remains the same. The status quo is not an option," he said.


washingtonpost.com 3 Oct 2004 In the Land Where Soviet Style Lives On By Peter Savodnik Sunday, October 3, 2004; Page B03 Vladimir Putin's recent call for a new Russian authoritarianism -- and the near-total support the president's proposal enjoys at home -- should rattle not only Western diplomats but democratic opposition leaders throughout the former Soviet Union. For them, Russia's reversal raises a fundamental, even existential, question: Are the people living in the 15 former Soviet republics capable of governing themselves? Do they yearn to be free? Or is it their nature to acquiesce to dictatorship when the apparent price of freedom -- say, the massacre of hundreds of schoolchildren -- becomes too expensive? This question of post-Soviet political identity is particularly salient in Belarus, Russia's immediate neighbor to the west: On Oct. 17, Belarusans, having rejected freedom in favor of security a decade ago, head to the polls for parliamentary elections. Their dictatorial president, Alexander Lukashenko, has shown little appetite for democratic reform. But the liberal activists running for office -- a hodgepodge of social democrats, free marketeers, reconstructed Marxists and others who call themselves the Five-Plus Coalition -- believe now is their moment. This is, at least for the present, a dubious proposition. In Belarus, the fourth estate is more or less an organ of Lukashenko's regime, and elections are for show; fears of ballot tampering and last-minute disqualification of democratic candidates are rampant. Before liberal reform can sweep Belarus or Russia, Ukraine, Moldova or Georgia, the people of those nations will have to choose whether they want to be subjects or citizens, whether they want the right (and the responsibility) to build their own future. This may sound odd to Americans, since most of us take it for granted that all peoples want to be the masters of their own destinies. But at a time when the United States is exporting, or attempting to export, democracy to the Middle East, it's legitimate to ask whether, in fact, everyone everywhere wants to be like us. Our experience in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as the uncertainty surrounding the post-Soviet world, should give us pause. Stanislav Shushkevich, the former head of the Supreme Soviet of Belarus and current leader of the Social Democratic Party, voices skepticism about the democratic movement's chances of making any headway this year, even as he remains committed to the idea of democracy. He points out that Belarusans have been conditioned by centuries of oppression to put up with almost anything; a quarter of the pre-war Belarusan population was murdered by the Soviets and the Nazis in the 1930s and '40s. To many, Lukashenko is but a pale shadow of Stalin and Brezhnev, an utterly unexceptional postscript to socialist totalitarianism. Indeed, Lukashenko retains support among peasants living in pre-Soviet villages, and the pensioners and World War II veterans whose lives were defined by the struggle against fascism, five-year plans and the socialist march toward "freedom." When I visited him in the capital city of Minsk last May, Shushkevich, who is nearing 70, speculated that the moment for peaceful transition may have been lost. A former nuclear physicist, it was he, along with Boris Yeltsin and Leonid Kravchuk, then president of Ukraine, who formally dissolved the Soviet Union in a Belarusan hunting lodge in late 1991. Ten million Belarusans who had been rotting away in a "workers' paradise" haunted by the gulag and made nearly uninhabitable by the Chernobyl disaster were set free. A liberal regime took power, with Shushkevich at its head. But the West, Shushkevich told me, missed its best opportunity to help build a stable democracy when it failed to give Belarus low-interest loans. The "shock therapy" of privatization proved too great for Belarusans, he said. Lukashenko, a parliamentary deputy at the time, was able to capitalize on widespread discontent. After three years of independence, the Belarusans decided they'd had enough of democracy. With the 1994 election of Lukashenko, they made clear what they wanted: Order, predictability and an all-powerful state to safeguard against drug traffickers, arms dealers and foreign investors looking to carve up downtown Minsk. They also made it clear what they did not want: Freedom. The freedom to build a life, to express an opinion, to be more than a cog in the communal organism. Today, Lukashenko is the unquestioned dictator of his country, having spent the past decade marginalizing opposition leaders, shutting down independent newspapers and squeezing business owners to the point of near-extinction. Shushkevich doesn't foresee a peaceful evolution to a more democratic society. He believes that a challenge to Lukashenko is more likely to resemble what took place in Romania, where dictator Nicolae Ceaucescu was murdered in 1989, than in Czechoslovakia, where a bloodless Velvet Revolution toppled the communist regime that same year. "My parents and grandparents would put it this way," he said of Lukashenko's long-term prospects. "This man will not die a natural death." This is indeed a critical time, and not only in Belarus. Ukrainians will vote for their next president on Oct. 31, and the recent suspected poisoning of opposition leader Viktor Yushchenko is just one of many signs that reform will not come easily to the former Soviet Union. There is a tragic inevitability to all this. "In the course of the 20th century, successive regimes, wars, revolutions, gulags, eliminated the most active, the most independent, the most energetic people," said historian Roman Szporluk, the recently retired director of Harvard University's Ukrainian Research Institute. "For people to survive under Stalin, under communism, you had to pretend to be stupid. If you go on this way generation after generation, you really create a certain mode of behavior." Still, the younger reformers -- the university activists, independent journalists, anarchists and human rights lawyers -- are more optimistic than people like Shushkevich. They despise Lukashenko for his backwardness and his thick peasant accent. They fear the local KGB, the nighttime arrests, the "ideological managers" who regulate their schools and businesses, the inanity and iniquity of a system that has no legitimacy or meaning. But they believe freedom is as inevitable as the classless utopia their great-grandparents were promised. Valentina Polevikova, a former trade union leader and now a democratic candidate from Minsk in the parliamentary elections, characterized the reform movement as an effort to change the way Belarusans think about the relationship between the state and civil society. "I want to talk to them so that they understand that Lukashenko has been lying to them for 10 years the way the Soviets lied to them for 70 years," she told me. Polevikova and other reformers said the elections two weeks from now will show whether Belarusans' three-year experiment with freedom in the early 1990s was an aberration or a promise of the possibility of a different kind of political identity. This may be putting too much emphasis on a single campaign. The reformist coalition has spent more than a year recruiting candidates, but it's unlikely they'll win even a handful of the 110 parliamentary seats up for grabs. In the longer term, though, there are reasons to be hopeful. First, Belarus is not a place like Iraq, with its ancient hatreds, war-torn cities and radical theocrats hellbent on annihilating all things Western. It is a European nation with churches, newspapers and an intelligentsia that has given rise to a protest class of students, trade unionists, veterans of the Afghan war, even ex-KGB agents. More importantly, it is not defined so much by language, ethnicity or race as by geography. "I think ethnic origins don't mean anything," said poet Nikolai Viniatski, while taking part in a protest against the regime in Minsk last spring. Belarus is populated by Orthodox Russians, Polish Catholics, even a smattering of Jews. Intermarriage is easy and ubiquitous. It was the Soviets who concocted this mix, as part of their plan to "de-ethnicize" the proletarian mass. And now, ironically, it is that cultural reengineering of a half-century ago that is laying the foundation for post-Soviet democracy, activists believe. In Belarus, Viniatski explained, there is no tribalism; the ethnic tension that colors life in the Baltics, the conflagration that is the Caucasus, could never happen here. People are, for the most part, comfortable with difference. You might call them post-ethnic. You might also call them post-ideological. In Belarus, they know that Marx's scientific materialism is dead. That dream turned out to be a joke for which tens of millions died. This has made Belarusans bitter and ironic. Over vodka, in their kitchens, they call their fearless leader a buffoon who likes to work out with the national hockey team but has been barred from the White House. They wonder when they will be able to join the community of nations. All this can be to the good, even if the elections later this month are unlikely to spark a revolution. In Belarus's East European neighbors and elsewhere, after all, bitterness and irony have often served as a ripe medium for change. Author's e-mail: psavodnik@thehill.com Peter Savodnik is political editor of the Hill newspaper. He traveled to Belarus on a fellowship from the German Marshall Fund of the United States.


NYT 7 Oct 2004 A Step Closer to Europe, Proud Turks Hold Off Glee By SUSAN SACHS ANKARA, Turkey, Oct. 6 - Turks reacted with relief on Wednesday to the European Commission's qualified endorsement of their country's bid to start talks for membership to the European Union, but civic and business leaders acknowledged they face a more formidable battle to win the hearts and minds of the European public. In the boardrooms of Turkish companies, in the offices of human rights groups and on the streets of the capital, many people said they would reserve their celebrations for mid-December, when European Union leaders will make their decision whether to put Turkey on the road to eventual entry. "It's not a 'yes,' " said Can Paker, chairman of the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation. "It's a 'yes, we'll see what you'll do.' There's nothing unfair in this. Every situation is politically different." The European Commission, the executive body of the 25-member bloc, said Turkey had generally fulfilled the objective criteria for advancing to the next stage of the membership process. But its report also spoke of "specific challenges" to Turkey's eventual entry and suggested it be held to a stricter standard than other recent candidate countries and given no guarantee that negotiations would result in full membership. The preconditions, which were generally anticipated here, were a reminder of the political divisions in many European countries over whether to accept a largely Muslim labor-exporting nation into the European Union's fold. As many Turks readily point out, the country's focus has been on Europe since 1923, when it emerged as a new nation from the ruins of the Ottoman Empire. Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, its revered founder, saw Europe as the model and aspiration for Turkey, a way of thinking that has been instilled ever since in every Turkish schoolchild. Over the past few months, as a debate has raged in Europe over whether Turkey is fit for European Union membership, many Turks have grown increasingly resentful that their credentials have come under question. "Frankly, I am so bored with all this back and forth about whether they're going to accept us or not, whether we are Asian or whether we're European," said Atila Yildiz, 38, a government worker who was taking a newspaper break on Wednesday in downtown Ankara. "They talk as if we come from a completely different world," he said. "But we're the descendents of ancient civilizations on this soil. We're as civilized as they are." Prime Minister Recip Tayyip Erdogan, who has pushed through substantial legal reforms to bring Turkey's laws in line with European Union standards, has occasionally displayed a similar impatience with European misgivings about Turkey. In a recent interview he noted that Turkey has been a full member of NATO for 52 years. "My country has given martyrs to NATO," Mr. Erdogan said. "Nobody there has talked about a special kind of membership or special conditions for us." Despite such public statements of indignation, many Turks who have been deeply involved in Turkey's European Union campaign said they were not surprised that the commission hedged its recommendations. Kemal Kirisci, director of the Center for European Studies at Bosphorus University in Istanbul, said he considered the special conditions set for Turkey's accession talks an attempt to create "breathing space" for Turkey's advocates to argue its case to the European public. "We have to open up skeptical European minds to reality and try to dismantle their fears," he said. "But if Turkey lives up to what is expected of it, I don't see how the skeptics can object without dynamiting very foundations of the European Union as an institution founded on the rule of law." The public debate over Turkey is likely to turn more bitter in advance of the decisive Dec. 17, European Union summit meeting in Amsterdam, where Turkey's advancement to the next stage of the accession process will be settled. Armenians living in Europe have already begun lobbying for a rejection of Turkey unless it admits that the Ottoman government practiced genocide against Armenians in the early 20th century, a charge long denied by modern Turkish governments.

www.turkishpress.com 6 Oct 2004 www.turkishpress.com Anadolu Agency Erdogan: Turkey Is Going To Approve Rome Agreement And Will Become Party To International Criminal Court Convention STRASBOURG - ''Turkey will soon approve Rome Agreement after completing its internal preparations and will become part of the International Criminal Court Convention'' Turkish PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in Strasbourg. Addressing the Parliamentary Assembly of Council of Europe (PACE), Erdogan said Council of Europe represents unification of around 800 million European citizens around democratic values and legal standards.

AFP 20 Oct 2004 Turkey to sign up to International Criminal Court Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced late Wednesday that his country would sign and ratify the Rome statute that created the International Criminal Court, which rules on war crimes and crimes against humanity. "Turkey will sign and ratify the Rome statute" that created the ICC, Erdogan said during a debate organised by France's Institute for International Relations. Almost 100 countries have ratified the Rome treaty, which established the court in July 1998, but excluding the United States, which opposes the court. The court, headquartered in The Hague, began operating in July 2002. The ICC is mandated to try genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. During a dinner debate organised by the French Institute for International Relations, Erdogan urged France to back Turkey's bid for EU membership. He also stressed Turkey's historical line that there had been no genocide of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire during World War I. Turkey categorically rejects claims of genocide and says that between 250,000 and 500,000 Armenians were killed in civil strife when the Armenians rose up against their Ottoman rulers. "Those who claim there was an Armenian genocide have not had the opportunity to study the Ottoman archives," he said. "If they had then they would see a very different picture," he added. In 2001 the parliament in France, which has a sizeable Armenian minority, passed a law recognising the Armenian genocide.

United Kingdom

AFP 6 Oct 2004 Blair visits Sudan to urge action on Darfur crisis by Peter Walker KHARTOUM, Oct 6 (AFP) - British Prime Minister Tony Blair held talks here Wednesday to pressure Sudan's leaders into taking action over the humanitarian crisis in war-torn Darfur. Blair, who underwent an operation to correct a heart flutter only five days earlier, was greeted at the presidential palace in Khartoum by Vice President Ali Osman Taha. The pair were scheduled to spend 45 minutes in talks before Blair then went on to meet President Omar al-Beshir. Blair's decision to intervene personally in the crisis, becoming the first serving British premier to visit an independent Sudan, was kept secret until the last moment for security reasons. The premier was set to take a tough line, telling Sudanese leaders plainly that the international community expected immediate changes in Darfur, the crisis-hit region of western Sudan. Violence in Darfur has left an estimated 50,000 people dead and 1.4 million more displaced. Before leaving London late Tuesday at the start of an African mission, Blair's official spokesman said the prime minister's uncompromising message would be that Sudan "must comply" with United Nations resolutions on Darfur. The Security Council has threatened sanctions against Sudan if it fails to take steps to disarm the Arab Janjaweed militias, held responsible for atrocities in Darfur. With temperatures expected to hit around 40 Celsius (104 Fahreneheit) in Khartoum, it could prove a gruelling trip for a man recuperating from a heart operation. But Downing Street officials insist Blair was given a clean bill of health before he left. The Darfur crisis erupted when Sudan called on the militias to help subdue a revolt that broke out in February 2003, as mainly black African tribes rose up against the central government which they said had ignored their region's development. Blair would tell Sudan's leaders that they must negotiate a peace settlement with the rebels, and fully accept the role of the African Union in keeping peace, as well as assisting aid efforts, his spokesman said. The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), which is spending around 200 million dollars this year providing emergency relief in Darfur, said Wednesday that the situation remained "very, very precarious". While more aid was getting through and humanitarian agencies were receiving more cooperation from the authorities, Blair and other world leaders had to make sure Darfur was not forgotten, WFP spokesman Greg Barrow told reporters here. "The crisis is in the spotlight at the moment, and this helps us, but what we are saying is that this crisis is going to continue to the end of this year and then maybe for another," he said. With few crops planted in Darfur this year, millions would remain dependent on international aid, he explained. Blair, who has pledged to make Africa one of his key policies during 2005, when Britain holds the rotating presidency of both the G8 rich nations' club and the European Union, was due to leave later Wednesday for Ethiopia. There he was to attend a two-day meeting in Addis Ababa of the Commission for Africa, his personal project designed to galvanise development efforts. In Ethiopia, Blair would also deliver "a major speech on Africa", outlining his vision for the continent, his spokesman said.

Reuters 6 Oct 2004 Blair Presses Sudan President Over Darfur By REUTERS Filed at 5:12 a.m. ET KHARTOUM, Sudan (Reuters) - Britain's Prime Minister Tony Blair pressed Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir on Wednesday to end violence in Darfur on the highest-level visit from a Western government official since the crisis erupted. Blair -- on his first major outing since Friday's operation for heart palpitations -- slept briefly on an overnight flight from London before going into talks with Bashir at his presidential palace beside the river Nile in Khartoum. ``There is a lot of human suffering which could and should be prevented,'' Blair's spokesman said of Darfur. The first British leader to visit Sudan since independence from London in 1956, Blair was taking a tough approach with Bashir and other officials while avoiding Washington's description of the Darfur crisis as ``genocide,'' aides said. The U.S. line has infuriated Khartoum. Darfur has been torn by violence since rebels took up arms against the government in February 2003, saying it had neglected and marginalized the arid Darfur region about the size of France. The rebels accuse the government of arming Arab militias, known as Janjaweed, to loot and burn non-Arab villages in a campaign of ethnic cleansing. Khartoum denies that. Calling Darfur the world's worst humanitarian crisis, the United Nations has threatened Sudan with oil sanctions. It estimates 1.5 million people have been driven from their homes and up to 50,000 killed. Blair was urging the Sudanese government to show more progress in reining back Arab militia, improving access for relief workers, negotiating with rebel groups, and allowing an expanded role for African Union peacekeepers, his aides said. ``We are here to underline the clear message to Sudan from the U.N.,'' Blair's spokesman told traveling UK reporters. BRITISH COLONIAL LEGACY Aid agencies urged Blair not to mince his words. ``The situation in Darfur is not improving...There are daily reports of violence,'' Oxfam said. ``The prime minister can help thousands by shifting British policy up a gear.'' While Bashir and others were sure to put up a robust counter-argument to Blair, legislators from Darfur added that the former colonial ruler must bear some blame for the crisis. ``The United Kingdom is responsible for what is happening now in Darfur because it was the country which found Darfur as a separate state and invaded it and annexed it to the rest of Sudan without preserving any of its constitutional rights,'' said Idriss Youssef Ahmed, who represents South Darfur. Unlike previous visitors this year, including Secretary of State Colin Powell, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan and various European foreign ministers, Blair will not visit Darfur. ``We know what the situation in Darfur is. The important thing is that something is done about it,'' his spokesman said. ``Rather than concentrate on threats and sanctions, we would like to focus on trying to get progress.'' In a stinging U.N. assessment earlier this week, Annan said Sudan made no progress last month in stopping attacks on civilians, punishing culprits or nailing down a cease-fire. Khartoum accuses rebels of increasing attacks in an attempt to destabilize the region and ratchet up international pressure. Britain is one of the largest donors for Darfur -- with $111 million committed this year. Blair was due to fly to Ethiopia later Wednesday for a meeting with Prime Minister Meles Zenawi in the evening and the UK-sponsored Commission for Africa meeting starting Thursday.

Independent UK 12 Oct 2004 Honour for woman who dedicated her life to genocide survivors By Terri Judd 12 October 2004 A year after the genocide in Rwanda, Mary Kayitesi Blewitt returned to her village to dig through a mass grave in search of her family. The rains had washed away the topsoil, revealing the bodies of about 200 people. Yesterday, at the Women of the Year awards ceremony at the Savoy Hotel in London, Ms Blewitt was unable to find the words to express what it was like to rebury those she loved. She lost 50 members of her family in the genocide, including her brother John Baptiste, 27, whose leg was hacked off by his killers. He was left to bleed to death in front of his wife and children. Since then she has heard countless horrific stories from survivors who have come to her for help and she decided to set up an organisation known as the Surf Survivors Fund. "The widows who I met in Rwanda who had been raped just wanted to die," she said. Instead, she convinced them to set up their own charity to help the orphans. Fergal Keane, a BBC correspondent, said: "Mary Blewitt is quite a remarkable human being, one of the most remarkable I have ever met. Her work has involved extraordinary personal sacrifice. Those of us who witnessed genocide in Rwanda know that Mary Blewitt stands among the bravest of the brave, the kindest of the kind." Accepting the Pilkington Window to the World Award, Ms Blewitt said: "It makes me both sad and happy. It makes you happy to have someone acknowledge what you have done. But I also think, had there been no genocide I would not be here." Created in 1955, the Women of the Year Lunch and Assembly is intended to bring together distinguished women and reward them for their work. The main achievement award went Kelly Holmes for her double Olympic gold. "Her story is one of triumph over adversity, and she will not only be heralded for her athletic achievements but also for her gutsy, committed approach," the committee said. Jane Tomlinson, 40, who has raised nearly £1m for Cancer Charities since being told she had incurable breast cancer four years ago, won the Frink Award, for women who have enriched others' lives while overcoming difficulties of their own. Josette Bushell-Mingo, the actor and director who founded the Push performing arts company, was given the inaugural Craymer Award for Enterprise. The lunch's title was Fighting Back: Women's Voices in the Aftermath of the War in Iraq. The guest of honour, Iraq's leading female broadcaster, Amal al-Mudarris, 55, said: "My homeland has become a river of blood, bleeding every day." But while the future remained unclear, she said she was optimistic. "It is possible for the men of Iraq to protect Iraq themselves. When Iraq becomes free and democratic they will be able to do that." THE AWARD WINNERS Mary Kayitesi Blewitt: Founded The Survivor's Fund (SURF) to aid, assist and support survivors of the Rwandan genocide. She won the Pilkington Window to the World Award for work that has opened people's eyes to something that would not have otherwise been seen and understood Jane Tomlinson: Since being diagnosed with terminal breast cancer in 2000, she has raised almost £1m for cancern charities. She won the Frink Award for enriching other people's lives while overcoming difficulties of her own. Kelly Holmes: Overcoming numerous injury setbacks, she won gold in both the 800m and 1500m at the Olympics in Athens. She won the Good Housekeeping Outstanding Achievement award. Josette Buchell-Mingo: Launched the organisation PUSH - Pushing Black-led Art Into The Spotlight - with an annual season of dramatic work written and performed exclusively by black British artists. The Craymer Award for Enterprise, given to a woman who combines an enduring passion for the performing arts with a determination to make things happen.


October 8, 2004 Security Council Condemns Acts of Violence Against Civilians By WARREN HOGE UNITED NATIONS, Oct. 8 — The Security Council unanimously passed a Russian-initiated antiterror resolution today that declares all intentional acts of violence against civilians unjustifiable by any political, philosophical, ideological, racial, ethnic or religious considerations. "This statement is clear and it doesn't have loopholes," said John C. Danforth, the American ambassador. "The resolution which we have adopted states very simply that the deliberate massacre of innocents is never justifiable in any cause. Never." The heavily reworked resolution, introduced last month in the aftermath of suicide bombings of two Russian airliners and the hostage crisis in a North Ossetia school in which more than 320 children and adults died, failed to achieve its original purpose — that of creating a global blacklist of terrorists. A Security Council committee currently compiles a list restricted to people and groups linked to Al Qaeda and the deposed Taliban in Afghanistan whose assets, weapons purchases and travel member states are supposed to block. In dropping references to a broader list, the resolution instead said a new Security Council working group would study measures and procedures to deal with terror suspects outside the Qaeda-Taliban network. In brushing aside the distinction, Mr. Danforth said, "I think it sets in motion a process by which a list is going to be created. That's how I would put it." The resolution said that the working group should also consider setting up an international fund, financed by voluntary contributions and by seized terrorist assets, to compensate the families of victims. In response to concerns expressed by Algeria and Pakistan, the two Islamic countries on the Security Council, that the resolution would outlaw participation in what they consider liberation struggles, the final version said it was addressing only criminal acts, as defined in international conventions. The resolution was also revised to meet objections by the United States to the original version's failure to recognize the judicial nature of asylum and extradition. That version, reflecting Russian anger at Western countries like America and Britain that have given asylum or protection to Chechen rebels, had proposed that such people should be subject to simple "expedited extradition." In broad terms, the resolution summoned the 191 member states of the United Nations to mount a global campaign against terror by acting to prosecute or extradite people supporting, facilitating, financing, participating or attempting to participate in terrorist acts. American diplomats had earlier envisioned the resolution as a way of expanding the existing restricted list to include the names of groups like Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad and the Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades, all groups that the United States and Israel hold responsible for terror in the Middle East. Ambassador Dan Gillerman of Israel said that while he was disappointed that there was no such "naming and shaming" in the resolution's final version, he still viewed the result as an advance. "The U.N. being the U.N., what has been achieved by consensus today is very important and places terrorism at the top of the agenda in this building — where it should be," Mr. Gillerman said.

AP 29 Oct 2004 12:40 PM PDT U.N. decries wartime violence against women By Edith M. Lederer, Associated Press Writer UNITED NATIONS - Sexual violence against women is taking place "on a massive scale" in countries in conflict, and the international response remains inadequate, one of the U.N.'s highest-ranking women told the Security Council. Four years after the council adopted a landmark U.N. resolution committing governments to protect women from the abuses of war, Thoraya Obaid - head of the U.N. Population Fund - said "most women in conflict and post-conflict situations continue to experience little peace and little security." At an open council meeting focusing on implementation of the resolution, more than 50 speakers said much more needs to be done. Obaid was among the toughest in scolding world leaders for adopting standards and guidelines to protect women but taking little action on the ground. "From Afghanistan to Liberia, from Colombia to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, from Burundi to Darfur - the list goes on and on - women and girls, and even men and boys, are being subject to sexual violence, torture and slavery that defy the imagination and bring into sharp focus the cruelty that human beings can inflict on each other," Obaid said. "It is truly sad, and terribly angering, to see the tremendous needs. But it is even more shocking to witness the response so far, which remains completely inadequate," she added. Louise Arbour, the U.N. high commissioner for human rights, told the council that "women do not seek a special kind of justice." "However, historically they have been and continue to be on the receiving end of a special kind of oppression and abuse," she said. "This is particularly so in times of conflict when the rule of force obliterates the rule of law." Arbour urged the Security Council "to use all its influence to generate the political will, as well as the financial support, to protect women's rights and ensure women's access to justice." Every day, she said, women and young girls who fled their homes to escape violence in Sudan's western Darfur region risk being attacked when they leave camps where they have taken shelter. Noeleen Heyzer, executive director of the U.N. Development Fund for Women, said the international community now realize that rape and other violence against women are systematically used as weapons of war, and the International Criminal Court has included rape in its list of war crimes. But gender-based sex crimes are still carried out in conflicts, often with impunity, she said. "In places such as Haiti and East Timor, rape has been used to punish wives and female sympathizers of the enemy," Heyzer said. "And in many wars and conflicts, rape has been used as a way of humiliating the men of the other side, infecting women with HIV/AIDS, forcing them into sexual slavery and destroying women's ability to revitalize their communities." Obaid noted that in Rwanda, two-thirds of the women who were raped during the 1994 genocide were infected with the HIV virus "and they are dying slow painful deaths from AIDS." These women need anti-retroviral drugs, she said. Many speakers lamented that the resolution's call for countries in conflict to give women a major voice at peace talks has gone largely unheeded - as has its call for the United Nations to give women top jobs in conflict resolution. Undersecretary-General for Peacekeeping Jean-Marie Guehenno noted that women constitute only 1 percent of military personnel in U.N. peacekeeping operations and that "peace processes and negotiations remain overwhelmingly male-dominated arenas." Of the 27 U.N. special representatives in charge of U.N. peace operations, only two are women, he said. Sexual abuse by U.N. peacekeepers and humanitarian personnel is also far too widespread, he said, citing about 70 allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse against U.N. peacekeeping personnel this year just in the Congolese city of Bunia. At the end of the daylong meeting, Britain's U.N. Ambassador Emyr Jones Parry, the current council president, read a statement from the council strongly condemning "the continued acts of gender-based violence in situations of armed conflict." The council urged "the complete cessation" of all violence and human rights abuses against women, stressed the need to punish the perpetrators, and called for an immediate increase in the number of women in all operations to prevent conflict and promote peace.

WP 27 Oct 2004 Opinion Focus: More Than Words for Darfur Richard O'Brien Former Director of the Center for the Prevention of Genocide Wednesday, October 27, 2004; 2:00 p.m. ET Is America indifferent to the crisis in Sudan? Richard O'Brien, former director of the Center for the Prevention of Genocide, claims that inaction is indifference. He notes that America is in the position to intervene but is choosing not to do so. What are the reasons that America hasn't more fully participated in stopping Sudan's Genocide? Richard O'Brien will be live online at 2 ET on Wednesday, October 27, to discuss motives for action. Submit your questions and comments before or during the discussion. Editor's Note: washingtonpost.com moderators retain editorial control over Live Online discussions and choose the most relevant questions for guests and hosts; guests and hosts can decline to answer questions. --Washington, D.C.: Do you think that if the U.S. weren't so deeply involved in the elections right now that we would be acting? Richard OBrien: I believe there is a better chance that we would be acting. Recent administrations of both parties have shown a propensity at the Administration level to respond to massacres and massive humanitarian disasters quicker since Rwanda. _______________________ Wheaton, Md.: The USA is doing more than any other nation to help the Sudanese people, who are being slaughtered under brutal arab occupation. The real question should be why the UN refuses to act. Richard OBrien: At this point it comes down to logistics. The UN has called for an end to this brutal activity as has the US, however the US is in a unique position to provide the logistical hardware to help get the African Union troops on the ground. The UN simply doesn't have that kind of capability given the rapid deploy needs. _______________________ Washington, D.C.: Mr. O'Brien, Can you speak a bit to the role of the Center for Prevention of Genocide's in addressing the conflict in Dufur? Richard OBrien: Approximately eighteen months ago we began to receive our first delegations from Darfur. They had compelling lists and accounts of ongoing massacres but because of the travel ban in place it proved to be extraordinarily difficult to receive neutral third party confirmation. After several months we were finally able to confirm the massacres and began to publish reports, go on NPR and give testimony to Congressional and State Department staffs. Just prior to the Center closing its doors in March, 2004 we attempted to pull together the Darfurian leadership and put them in contact with human rights organizations that could further the publicity of their cause. As far as I know we were one of the first if not the first neutral organization to publically determine the abuse in Darfur as genocide. _______________________ Midlothian, Va.: Mr. O'Brien, I had heard that one of the reasons the U.S. government was not intervening was because some U.S. corporation was in the middle of negotiating oil or natural gas rights with the Sudanese government so the Administration didn't want to do anything to mess that up. True? Richard OBrien: I am not sure about the US gas/oil corporation angle but there was another concern that I am familiar with. Several governments, agencies and human rights organizations agonized over whether to give priority to the abuse in darfur due to the ongoing peace talks that would end the civil war in the Southern Sudan. That civil war had raged for over 17 years and the toll on human life and civilian suffering was staggering. Many involved were concerned that by focusing on Darfur as the negotiations reached a pivotal stage it could derail the peace process in the South. While there may be corporate angles to the hesitation to expose Darfur as well, I do believe that there was dilemma of which should take priority for many organizations. _______________________ Washington, D.C.: Could you give us a perspective of the damage that has been done in Sudan? Richard OBrien: In Darfur, Sudan, literally tens of thousands have been massacres. Scores upon scores of villages have been razed. Women have been systematically raped and the vast majority of the population has been ethnically cleansed because of the danger they find themselves in. The government of Sudan has sponsored the Janjaweet militias who are responsible for these abuses, providing them with wages, supplies and aerial coverage. The number of refugees and displaced people numbers well over 1.2 million and famine has begun to set in as a result of the inability to secure famine routes. if the situation continues withoput massive immediate aid the number of dead from famine and disease alone will be in the hundreds of thousands. In the South and central regions of Sudan the Dinka, Nuer and Nuba ethnicities were targeted by the government as well for many years. The abuse there had been genocidal in nature as well with a strong tendency for complete ethnic cleansing. There was the presence of a strong slave trade as well that victimized the local communities as well as the systematic rape of women. The causes or reasons were varied. in the South the government was interested in freeing up large swathes of land to sell oil concessions. In central Sudan the government felt threatened by the moderate Nubas and the oil pipelines flowed through the territory there. the government also uses the pretext of nationalist or rebel groups that sping up in the area, primarilty for defensive purposes to justify their campaigns. _______________________ Arlington, Va.: How does international law factor into the situation in Dafur? Richard OBrien: This is a tough one. The laws regarding human rights, crimes against humanity and genocide are still being written. We are in new territory with Milosevic of Yugoslavia when it comes to putting on trial a former head of state for genocide or crimes against humanity. There are clear articles in the Genocide Convention that are being broken and many statutes that can be invoked but the real teeth lie with the Security Council and preventative measures. The Security Council could move things along in Darfur, Sudan in a number of ways both regarding aid and punitively. I have a list, a matrix, if you will of applicable laws. If you email me on another day I will try to look through our files and send it to you. obrienrichard04@yahoo.com _______________________ Marlinton, W.V.: Why isn't there a movement in this country by private citizens to change/affect the outcome in Sudan? And if there is, can you share that inforamtion (name contact person, etc) with us? Richard OBrien: There are several organizations including the Sudan Taskforce, Darfur peace and Development (Mr Giddo 804-439-1212) Nuba Mountain Int'l Assoc (Mr Ismail aminis66@aol.com) but probably the best person to get ahold of is Jemera Rone of Human Rights Watch. She is the sharpest Human Rights advocate on Sudan. I dont have her information in front of me but she runs a listserv with excellent information updated daily. _______________________ Washington, D.C.: I had a few friends that worked with you at the CPG. They were telling me about how you all were devoloping satelite technology to broadcast images from sudan. What is the situation on that? Richard OBrien: We took a long hard look at using satellite imaging but decided against it. There are too many factors that can make the image useless. Foliage, night shots, inconclusive shots, the angle of interpretability, not to mention the expense of it. We found that the best use of time and money was to work on getting on the ground sources, building a good relationship and then getting the breaking news to the people who can most readily influence the situation. _______________________ Lyon, France: Please explain why the millions of Christians murdered in Sudan gets such little international attention, yet focuses on the Israelis every time they shoot a terrorist. Is the fear of Islamic nations so great that no one, besides the US, will condemn them? Richard OBrien: I believe the lack of press coverage comes down to lack of strategic interest and indifference. Both are vastly inappropriate excuses. It seems to me that every person, not only relatives and other victims of crimes against humanity, but every person should take a personal interest in those who are being victimized who cannot defend themselves. I believe the press focuses on Israel because it is a powder keg and an important part of the US foreign policy in a very important area. _______________________ New York, N.Y.: What can individuals stateside do to help? What are a few international organizations whom we can contact and donate time and money? Thanks. Richard OBrien: Six months ago i would have suggested our Center but we went out of business. I would suggest contacting Jemera Rone of Human Rights Watch in DC or NY. She is the foremost expert in the country regarding the area and has done more singlehandedly to bring these issues to the public's attention than anyone I know; John predergast of the International Crisis Group also plays a key role in informing policy makers who can nudge policy makers into action. For the humanitarian part Doctor's without Borders is usually the organization that will go where other organizations wouldn't think of going. They are really one of the first lines in getting aid to people who are in remote areas. _______________________ Washington, D.C.: Are there investments and deals at stake that prevent international intervention? Richard OBrien: There was a time earlier this year when most organizations had to wait on releasing the information regarding Darfur, Sudan because of the peace process that was occuring in the South. the civil war had left the south ravaged and the civilian population utterly devastated after 17 years of conflict that included genocide, ethnic cleansing and slavery. Once that peace treaty was in hand many of the organizations turned their attention to Darfur and put out the accounts of the deplorable conditions there. It was a true dilemma. had they published the information earlier, would it have destabilized the talks and derailed the peace process and would we now be looking at two situations of peril and not just Darfur? _______________________ Alexandria, Va.: What's your outlook for Sudan's regional security? How are neighboring countries reacting? Richard OBrien: Chad is the only country that is significantly effected. earlier in the civil war in the south, Uganda was effected by the border-hopping that the LRA forces would do between Sudan and Uganda. The LRA would massacre and pillage a village in Northern Uganda and then slip across the border to hide in Sudan. But that has been over for some time. Presently Chad, a very poor country, has hosted the vast majority of the over 1 million refugees from Darfur Province. The refugee camps are over capacity and many of them do not have the supplies or protection they need. As a result the Chadian government has done everything it can to help the refugees but they are utterly overwhelmed. Beyond this I do not believe that the Darfurian situation has effected other parts of the region. _______________________ Washington, D.C.: Are aid workers in danger there? Richard OBrien: Yes. The situation on the ground is very volatile. The Janjaweet are not to be trusted as they are the perpetrators of massacres, rape and genocidal conduct. There are disease and famine conditions in many of the camps. Until the Africa Union troops get on the ground and secure the supply roots and are backed up by a UN mandate to use force to protect civilians, everyone on the ground faces some degree of danger. _______________________ Detroit, Mi.: I think that unless one has pictures on television and in the newspapers of the killing, people do not want to admit that genocide is occurring or do anything about it. After the pictures in the media from Somalia and Americans dying there after our intervention, noone wanted to do anything about the situation in Rawanda. We now have daily bad graphic images coming from Iraq, and Americans do not want to think of becoming involved in another conflict in which Americans may die. Richard OBrien: You have a point there. Until recently it was very difficult to get any images outside of Darfur, Sudan due to the travel ban put in place by the Sudanese government. Only now, as the massacres have ebbed are the reporters and aid workers more readily able to get in and out of the country. But photos and film of the famine is available and every now and then you will see the films on BBC and CNN. It is one of those burdens of being the world's super power and the one country that other countries expect to lead, when bad things happen, we are expected to take a leadership role. There is a term called 'compassion fatigue' and I think its over used. I believe that the average American would see to it that both situations were addressed if they knew enough about each. We did the humanitarian aid during WWI and WWII during the thickest of fighting. I think we can do it today. _______________________ New York, N.Y.: What is the most valuable action for private individuals to take? I find that further study of the crisis in the news does not illuminate how best to help. To whom should letters be written, and where is a good place for contributions? Richard OBrien: There are a couple of ways to go on this. Dont underestimate how much of a difference one individual can make. The first place is our government. Even though we are in the middle of an election cycle, the administration, your Senator, Representive and the State Department Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights (It used to be Lorne Craner - and may still be) are good places to start here. Another good place to get information and give donations to is through Jemera Rone of Human Rights Watch in either DC or NY - she is probably the best person in the country to get things done in Sudan. Try to get on her list serv. John Predergast of International Crisis Group does good work as well and Doctor's without Border's is one of the best humanitarian organizations for first response and remote response. Feel free to email me if you need other leads; obrienrichard04@yahoo.com _______________________ Richard OBrien: signing off _______________________ .


news source abbreviations

AFP - Agence France-Presse
All-Africa - All-Africa Global Media
AI - Amnesty International
Al Jezeera - Arabic Satellite TV news from Qatar (since Nov. 1996, English since 2003)
Anadolu - Anadolu Agency, Turkey
ANSA - Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata - Italy
Antara Antara National New Agency, Indonesia
AP - Associated Press
BBC - British Broadcasting Network
DPA - Deutsche Presse-Agentur
EFE - Agencia EFE (Spanish), www.EFEnews.com (English)
FANA - Federation of Arab News Agencies

HRW - Human Rights Watch
ICG - International Crisis Group
ICRC - International Committee of the Red Cross
Interfax - Interfax News Agency, Russia
IPS - Inter Press Service (an int'l, nonprofit assoc. of prof. journalists since 1964)
IRIN - Integrated Regional Information Networks (UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (Africa and Central Asia)
IRNA -Islamic Republic News Agency
IWPR Institute for War & Peace Reporting (the Balkans, Caucasus and Central Asia, with a special project on the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal)

JTA - Global News Service of the Jewish People
Kyodo - Kyodo News Agency, Japan
LUSA - Agência de Notícias de Portugal
National Native News
NYT - New York Times
UN-OCHA - UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (ReliefWeb)
OANA - Organisation of Asia-Pacific News Agencies
Pacific Islands Report - University of Hawai‘i at Manoa
Pacific News Service nonprofit alternative source of news and analysis since 1969PANA - Panafrican News Agency
Peace Negotiations Watch
 (PILPG) Weekly News monitor since Sept. 2002
PTI - Press Trust of India
RFE/RL - Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty ( private news service to Central and Eastern Europe, the former USSR and the Middle East funded by the United States Congress)
Reuters - Reuters Group PLC
SAPA - South African Press Association
UPI - United Press International
WPR - World Press Review,
a program of the Stanley Foundation.
WP - Washington Post
Xinhua - Xinhua News Agency, China

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