Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Sudan’s Bashir Seeks Women’s Help in Arms Collection Campaign | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page
Media ID: 55383695

Sudan President Omar al-Bashir Photo: ASHRAF SHAZLY / AFP

Khartoum– Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir warned against refusing to voluntarily surrendering weapons, in a campaign to collect arms from tribes in war-torn Darfur.

Bashir also urged women in Darfur to help in the campaign, asking them to prevent their husbands and children from hiding the weapons they have.

Speaking at a rally in Niyala, South Darfur, Bahsir said: “Enough is enough. We will implement the rule of law in the region and weapons will only be carried by regular forces.”

Earlier in July, the president pressed on with a government campaign to collect arms from tribes and combat arms proliferation in Darfur.

The campaign was mocked by the central government in Khartoum, however, observers believe the campaign overlooked the real reasons behind collecting the weapons. They see that the situation now is not suitable for citizens to relinquish weapons they attained from the government or following conflicts in nearby countries.

Conflicts in Sudan have killed about 300,000 people and displaced more than 2,5 million, most of which are stuck in large camps, according to the United Nations. However, the Sudanese government believes the reasons behind the displacement had ceasedto be and the security situation in the country improved.

Bashir is touring the region ahead of a United States’ decision on October 12 on whether to permanently lift a decades-old trade embargo on Sudan.

Before arriving in South Darfur, Bashir told rally attendees in West Darfur: “We are asking people to surrender their arms voluntarily. Some are giving up their weapons but others are keeping them.”

He warned that the government will take the arms that had not been surrendered.

“By the end of this year, no civilians will be permitted to carry arms throughout the entire Darfur region,” he said.

Bashir pledged to restore and maintain security in the region. He said the government is capable of reinstating stability in the region, adding that the rebels are responsible for halting reconstruction works.

“Security is the starting point of any development. You, the people of Darfur, give us security; we will give you development,” he said.

He pledged imposition of state authority legalizing the unlicensed cars and completion of development and service projects, announcing providing the State with three excavators as part of Zero Thirst Program to solve problem of water in the West Darfur State.

In related news, Sudanese foreign ministry stated that the Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour led the country’s delegation to the UN General Assembly. The statement issued mentioned that the minister participated in a special session on immigration and refugees organized by the Italian delegation to UN.

The statement also said that the minister spoke at that session along with the foreign ministers of Italy, Tunisia, Niger, and Uganda as well as members of the civil society. They discussed means to help refugees and displaced citizens.

The head of the Sudanese delegation presented the role of the government to contain the problem and cooperate with the regional and international community to overcome this crisis. He also lauded the role of Italy in this matter, pointing that Sudan continues to follow an open door policy to contain the refugees.