Most recent in GPANet.org

  • As UNAMID deploys out of Darfur: ethnically-targeted violence continues on a wide scale | A bi-weekly compendium, No. 3

     

    Eric Reeves | November 3, 2017  |  http://wp.me/s45rOG-8177

    The failed UN/African Union "hybrid" Mission in Darfur (UNAMID)-which has shamelessly and with gross inaccuracy celebrated its success for the almost ten years during which it has been charged with protecting civilians and humanitarians-continues (per its most recent reauthorization by the UN Security Council | June 2017) to draw down its forces on a scale ensuring that what exceedingly limited protection the Mission has offered will be greatly reduced. 44 percent of military personnel are now deploying out of Darfur and 30 percent of the policing personnel. The knock-on effects of withdrawing this hopelessly misconceived, demoralized, ill-equipped, and badly led Mission are many.

    Some of the greatest consequences will be a reduction in humanitarian access; for example, since the UN Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) flies only to areas militarily protected, locations abandoned by UNAMID troops will no longer be accessible. This is especially perverse since a condition for the permanent lifting of U.S. economic sanctions by the Trump administration was the improvement of humanitarian access in Darfur.  The UN's current estimate of the number of people in Darfur in need of humanitarian assistance is 3 million.

    Tragically, the greatest consequence of UNAMID's deployment out of Darfur are the continuation, and in some places acceleration, of daily ethnically-targeted attacks on civilians throughout Darfur, primarily by Arab militias controlled or sanctioned by Khartoum. Non-Arab (African) civilians continue to be-as they have been for more than fourteen years-subject to murder, rape, displacement, and loss of property and goods.

    There is good reason to believe that we will see in the reports from Darfur (conveyed primarily by Radio Dabanga) continuation, even expansion, of these attacks. Only the fact of previous vast destruction of African villages and the violent expropriation of farmlands, and the massive concentration of displaced persons (some 2.7 million in Darfur itself, another 320,000 in eastern Chad refugee camps) limits the scale of attacks. Moreover, we should remember that some 600,000 people have been killed as a direct or indirect result of violence over the past fourteen years: this approaches ten percent of the pre-war population in Darfur (see | http://sudanreeves.org/2017/01/05/quantifying-genocide-darfur-mortality-update-august-6-2010/).

    As a crude barometer of the scale of violence, I will be assembling weekly a brief compendium of foreshortened dispatches (all with sources on the ground). For surveys covering more extensive periods the violent expropriation of African farmlands (November 2014 - November 2016) and the rape of girls and young women (for the years 2014 and 2015), see:

    http://sudanreeves.org/2016/02/17/changing-the-demography-violent-expropriation-and-destruction-of-farmlands-in-darfur-november-2014-november-2015/

    http://sudanreeves.org/2017/03/07/continuing-mass-rape-of-girls-in-darfur-the-most-heinous-crime-generates-no-international-outrage-january-2016/

    Herewith the third (bi-weekly) compendium of violence reported from Darfur during the withdrawal of UNAMID.

    The dispatches are all from Radio Dabanga, although several of the links I provide in my commentary are to related dispatches from Sudan Tribune. All emphases in bold are mine; the emphases in orange bold are of particularly significant highlights or passages:

    · "Raids and siege tactics" to be used in North Darfur arms and vehicle collection | October 25, 2017 | KHARTOUM / KUTUM / KABKABIYA

    The Chairman of the High Committee for the collection of weapons and unlicensed vehicles has said in the Khartoum that "the forced collection of weapons through raids and siege will be carried out decisively in all the targeted states in the coming days." This was announced yesterday by Ahmed Abdallah El Naw, chairman of the High Committee after the regular meeting of the committee at the Republican Palace under the chairmanship of Sudan's Vice-President Hassabo Abdelrahman. [During the fearsome assaults on the populations of East Jebel Marra and the Jebel Marra massif itself, Hassabo referred to the non-Arab/African populations of these areas as "insects," and that "none should be left alive"-ER https://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/report_pdf/sudan0915_insert_lowres_with_cover.pdf/]

  • Darfur: How Genocides Are Made to Disappear

     

    Fourteen Years After Genocidal Violence Began in Darfur, the EU, UN, and AU Offer Darfuris Expedient and Disingenuous Promises

    Eric Reeves  |  October 30, 2017   |   http://wp.me/s45rOG-8172

    A lengthy Radio Dabanga dispatch today manages to capture an extraordinary amount of the bad faith, disingenuousness and culpable ignorance on the part of those actors who are most responsible for allowing Darfur's agony to continue for over fourteen years. Some 3 million people still displaced from their homes, villages, and lands, and some 600,000 have died from the direct and indirect causes of violence loosed my the National Islamic Front/National Congress Party Khartoum regime in its ethnically-targeted counter-insurgency throughout Darfur, extending into eastern Chad. The Radio Dabanga dispatch in its unedited entirety appears at the end of this analysis; but immediately below is a detailed, parsing analysis of the perverse pretenses, lies, understatements, and willful ignorance that are cited throughout the dispatch.

    I would begin my noting that nowhere in the comments from European UnionUN, and African Union actors is there anything approaching an honest acknowledgement of the costs of many years of violent expropriation of no-Arab/African farmlands-by Khartoum's various Arab militia allies (some non-Sudanese), by proxy forces, and by those armed groups that continue to operate without fear of arrest by Khartoum. For all the expedient talk about the transition from humanitarian assistance to development assistance, there is nothing from the EU Ambassador to Sudan or others about this critical obstacle to returns by the displaced.

    [For a detailed, data-driven analysis of the issue, looking at Darfur as a whole from November 2014 - November 2015, see my monograph: "‘Changing the Demography':  Violent Expropriation and Destruction of Farmlands in Darfur,  November 2014 - November 2015" | December 1, 2015 |  http://wp.me/p45rOG-1P4/]

    Instead of acknowledging this central problem in any meaningful and lasting peace agreement for the people of Darfur, we have only glib acknowledgement of challenges still facing "voluntary returns":

    "There are some tough and hard nuts still to crack in Darfur-this is beyond doubt," said [EU Ambassador Jean-Michel Dumond]...

    But instead of solutions to difficult problems, Ambassador simply changes the subject:

    "The climate change is a reality," Dumond continued. "Demographic pressure is there. If the right to return is to be respected, we also know that many of the displaced people will not return to their villages. That is why we are considering new programmes focusing on the creation of job opportunities for the displaced people in urban dwellings around the big cities in Darfur." [all emphases in bold in quoted text have been added-ER]

    There is no doubt that climate change has had an influence on demographic issues and tensions in Darfur, although these began well before the explosion of violence in 2003; and demographic pressures have long been felt in Darfur. But the notorious statement by then chief Janjaweed militia leader Musa Hilal in August 2004 is of considerably more relevance than Ambassador Dumond's in explaining why so many non-Arab/African people can't return to their villages, why Khartoum is so clearly intent on dismantling the camps for these displaced persons, and why farming is not in their future:

    The ultimate objective in Darfur is spelled out in an August 2004 directive from [Janjaweed paramount leader Musa] Hilal's headquarters: "change the demography" of Darfur and "empty it of African tribes." Confirming the control of [Khartoum's] Military Intelligence over the Darfur file, the directive is addressed to no fewer than three intelligence services-the Intelligence and Security Department, Military Intelligence and National Security, and the ultra-secret "Constructive Security," or Amn al Ijabi.  (Julie Flint and Alex de Waal, Darfur: A Short History of a Long War, Zed Books, 2005)

    Dumond's notion that somehow this attitude does not still prevail is finally a form of mendacity, deliberately distorting the truth about what is possible, and what Khartoum is and is not willing to commit to salvage the lives and livelihoods that it has for fourteen long years attempted to destroy. The vast majority of non-Arab/African Darfuris cannot return to their villages because the have been destroyed or because insecurity is intolerably great. The same is true of the 320,000 overwhelmingly non-Arab/African Darfuri refugees in eastern Chad.

    The EU's Partner in Sudan

  • Will the NIF/NCP regime in Khartoum be held accountable for genocide, massive crimes against humanity, and uncountable war crimes?

     

    Eric Reeves   |   October 27, 2017

    As the regime in Khartoum is brought ever further into the international fold, its savage assaults on people of Sudan's marginalized regions must not be forgotten. In particular, I believe, we are obliged to recall that the deliberate bombing of civilians and humanitarians-including hospitals, schools, mosques, churches, foodstocks-extend back to the earliest days of National Islamic Front/National Congress Party rule. Many of the very same men who engineered the June 1989 military coup are still in power, including President Omar al-Bashir, indicted by the International Criminal Court on multiple counts of genocide and crimes against humanity.

    For more than twenty years the regime has used aerial attacks on civilians and humanitarians as a central weapon of war. The evidence is overwhelming, and is gathered here (see below) in systematic fashion, with as much comprehensiveness as records permit. A final data spreadsheet includes more than 2,000 confirmed incidents of deliberate attacks on civilians and humanitarians, including the International Committee of the Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières, American Refugee Council, Norwegian People's Aid, and many others. South Sudan, Darfur, South Kordofan, Blue, Nile, eastern Sudan, and extra-territorial bombings are all included, along with a lengthy framing essay and a bibliography of sources extending to many dozens of pages. The data spreadsheet includes dates, locations, sources, number of bombs (or other munitions) dropped, and casualties and damage.

    Many links to sources have gone "dead"; many of those who served as sources are now deceased or unavailable; some data/records have become unavailable for other reasons. This report, I believe, is likely to be the definitive account of the Khartoum regime's serial war crimes of aerial assaults on civilians and humanitarians.

    "'They Bombed Everything that Moved': Aerial military attacks on civilians and humanitarians in Sudan, 1999 - 2011"

    (May 2011; updated October 2011, 2012, September 2013)

    http://wp.me/p45rOG-1lh

    The primary weapon in Khartoum's aerial war on civilians has been the Russian-built Antonov cargo plane, retrofitted to become a crude, inaccurate, but terrifying weapons of civilian terror and destruction. Shrapnel-loaded barrel bombs are simply rolled out the cargo bay from high altitudes without sighting mechanisms. The have no useful military accuracy.

  • Is the Dismantling of Darfur’s IDP Camps Beginning Under Cover of “Arms Collection”?

     

    Eric Reeves  |  October 23, 2017  |   http://wp.me/p45rOG-27s

    As far back as the summer of 2004 plans for the "return" of displaced persons were being considered, and mendacious public announcements by senior NIF/NCP officials spoke of "returns" as in full swing-a crude effort at making something so by declaring it so. Abdel Rahim Mohamed Hussein, then Minister of the Interior and the regime's special representative on Darfur, announced on Sudanese government-controlled radio on July 9, 2004 "that 86 percent of the Internally Displaced Persons had already returned to their villages" (UN Integrated Regional Information Networks, July 12, 2004). Hussein further declared that "it was ‘most important' to get people to return to their villages. Each state-the Darfur region has three-had its own plan of return."

    At the time camps for displaced persons in Darfur held more than 1 million people-leaving aside the large number of refugees (today this a population of approximately 320,000 according to the UN High Commission for Refugees). Presently, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, which has frequently been either unreliable or badly out of date with its figures for internally displaced persons (IDPs), provides data indicating that the number of IDPs in all setting is approximately 2.7 million (see | http://sudanreeves.org/2017/03/19/internally-displaced-persons-in-darfur-the-invisible-catastrophe/).

    Here it seems appropriate to recall that Hussein, the man speaking so callously of Darfuri IDPs, has been indicted by the International Criminal Court for massive crimes against humanity in Darfur. But there have been many statements such as his subsequently; indeed, in the closing days of 2015, Vice-President Hassabo Mohamed Abdelrahman was reported by Sudan Tribune as making clear the regime's view of the IDP camps:

    In a speech delivered before the representatives of former rebel groups and IDPs in El-Fasher, North Darfur on Monday, [Second Vice-President Hassabo Mohamed Abdelrahman] said Darfur has "completely recovered from the war and is now looking forward to achieve a full peace, stability and development."

    "IDP camps represent a significant and unfortunate loss of dignity and rights of citizens in their country" he said and called on the displaced "to choose within no more than a month between resettlement or return to their original areas."

    He further reiterated his government's commitment to take all the measures and do the needful to achieve this goal, stressing that "the year 2016 will see the end of displacement in Darfur." Abdel Rahman told the meeting that he has just ended a visit to Karnoi and Tina areas in North Darfur, adding the two areas which were affected by the conflict have totally recovered. He said his visit with a big delegation to the two areas "is a message sceptics in the fact that security and stability are back in Darfur"... (Sudan Tribune, December 28, 2015 | El Fasher, North Darfur)

  • As UNAMID deploys out of Darfur: ethnically-targeted violence continues on a wide scale | A weekly compendium, No. 2

     

    Eric Reeves | October 21, 2017  |  http://wp.me/p45rOG-27p

    [I periodically inquire of those on this email list whether they wish to continue to receive such dispatches as this; if you no longer wish to receive emails from this source, please reply with "decline" in the subject box-ER]

    The failed UN/African Union "hybrid" Mission in Darfur (UNAMID)-which has shamelessly and with gross inaccuracy celebrated its success for the almost ten years in which it has been charged with protecting civilians and humanitarians-is (per its most recent reauthorization by the UN Security Council | June 2017) drawing down its forces on a scale ensuring that what exceedingly limited protection the Mission has offered will be greatly reduced. 44 percent of military personnel are being deployed out of Darfur and 30 percent of the policing personnel. The knock-on effects of withdrawing this hopelessly misconceived, demoralized, ill-equipped, and badly led Mission are many.

    Some of the greatest consequences will be a reduction in humanitarian access; for example, since the UN Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) flies only to areas militarily protected, locations abandoned by UNAMID troops will no longer be accessible. This is especially perverse since a condition for the permanent lifting of U.S. economic sanctions by the Trump administration was the improvement of humanitarian access in Darfur.  The UN's current estimate of the number of people in Darfur in need of humanitarian assistance is 3 million.

    Tragically, the greatest consequence of UNAMID's deployment out of Darfur are the continuation, and in some places acceleration, of daily ethnically-targeted attacks on civilians throughout Darfur, primarily by Arab militias controlled or sanctioned by Khartoum. Non-Arab (African) civilians continue to be-as they have been for more than fourteen years-subject to murder, rape, displacement, and loss of property and goods.

  • As UNAMID deploys out of Darfur: ethnically-targeted violence continues on a wide scale | A weekly compendium, No. 1

     

    Eric Reeves | October 14, 2017 | http://wp.me/p45rOG-27b

     

    The failed UN/African Union "hybrid" Mission in Darfur (UNAMID)-which has shamelessly and with gross inaccuracy celebrated its success for the almost ten years in which it has been charged with protecting civilians and humanitarians-is (per its most recent reauthorization by the UN Security Council | June 2017) drawing down its forces on a scale ensuring that what exceedingly limited protection the Mission has offered will be greatly reduced. 44 percent of military personnel are being deployed out of Darfur and 30 percent of the policing personnel. The knock-on effects of withdrawing this hopelessly misconceived, demoralized, ill-equipped, and badly led Mission are many.

     

    Some of the greatest consequences will be a reduction in humanitarian access; for example, since the UN Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) flies only to areas militarily protected, locations abandoned by UNAMID troops will no longer be accessible. This is especially perverse since a condition for the permanent lifting of U.S. economic sanctions by the Trump administration was the improvement of humanitarian access in Darfur.  The UN's current estimate of the number of people in Darfur in need of humanitarian assistance is 3 million.

     

    Notably, UNAMID-in completely inappropriate and unqualified public commentary-celebrated the permanent lifting of sanctions, a celebration undoubtedly motivated by a desire to assist in lifting the opprobrium that hangs heavily over a genocidal regime regime that continues to flout, abuse, and block UNAMID's movements in Darfur. By celebrating the lifting of sanctions, the ignominious retreat in which UNAMID is engaged-more deployments out of Darfur will certainly be part of any UNAMID reauthorization in June 2018-is supposed to appear less ignominious. But the truth is conspicuous: UNAMID is the single greatest failure in the history of UN peacekeeping.

    Inline image 1

    UNAMID failed disgracefully in its "investigation" of the mass rapes at Tabit, North Darfur, October/November 2014; regular Sudan Armed Forces, at the command of the local garrison chief, raped more than 200 girls and women over two days. UNAMID took days to reach Tabit to "investigate" and announced it found no evidence of mass rape.  Human Rights Watch authoritatively, based on hundreds of interviews, confirmed what had been reported within days by Radio Dabanga: that mass rapes had occurred and had been committed by regular SAF troops | https://www.hrw.org/report/2015/02/11/mass-rape-north-darfur/sudanese-army-attacks-against-civilians-tabit

  • International Celebration of Lifting of U.S. Economic Sanctions on Sudan: Exercises in Self-Interest and Culpable Ignorance

     

    Eric Reeves | October 10, 2017 |  http://wp.me/p45rOG-26W

    I'll be writing regularly about what follows in the wake of the Trump administration's permanent lifting of U.S. economic sanctions on the Khartoum regime. Given the abundance of commentary on the benefits of such action, it seems useful to begin with the observations of a Sudanese economist who actually knows something about the Sudanese economy, as opposed to the staggering ignorance in this sphere revealed in commentary by the International Crisis Group, other American and European "think tanks," and actors such as UNAMID, whose contemptible performance in reporting on what has occurred in Darfur since the Mission deployed in January 2008 makes its celebration of the Trump administration action particularly and perversely ironic. Professor Hamid Eltigani of American University in Cairo has regularly and astutely commented on the economic situation in Sudan, and understands full well the dynamics of the collapsing economy. His previous work-frequently cited by actual experts on Sudan such as Suliman Baldo and Omer Ismail-has proved consistently accurate and Radio Dabanga's interview of him today provides a useful overview:

    "US sanctions relief will not improve living conditions in Sudan": Economist

    Radio Dabanga | October 9, 2017 | CAIRO / KHARTOUM

    https://www.dabangasudan.org/en/all-news/article/us-sanctions-relief-will-not-improve-living-conditions-in-sudan-economist

    Economic expert Prof Hamid Eltigani has contradicted predictions by Sudanese government officials that the US lifting of the trade embargo on Sudan will solve the economic crisis in the country to a large extent. Sudan's FA Minister announced that the second phase of the dialogue with Washington will take place early next year. According to Prof Eltigani, economist and head of the Department of Public Policy and Administration at the American University in Cairo, the permanent lifting of the trade embargo on Sudan as declared by Washington on Friday, "has mostly a psychological effect. The lifting of the sanctions opens the door for Sudan to free trade and investment, but the problem is that Khartoum is bankrupt and has nothing to sell," he commented in an interview with Radio Dabanga broadcast today.

    "Almost all industries have become inoperable in Sudan, as their structures have collapsed," he explained. "Most of the productive forces migrated to urban areas and are trying to survive by doing marginal jobs in the informal sector. Others are living in the various camps for the displaced. In addition, the country's infrastructure and the education sector that is supposed to provide qualified production cadres have collapsed completely."

  • The Voice of Conscience on Sudan in the U.S. Congress

    U.S. Rep. McGovern Condemns Trump Sanctions Relief for Sudan

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today U.S. Congressman Jim McGovern (D-MA), a senior House Democrat and the co-chair of the bipartisan Tom Lantos Human Rights Foundation, released the following statement in response to the Trump Administration's decision to provides permanent sanctions relief to Sudan. In July 2017, McGovern led a bipartisan group of over 50 lawmakers calling on the President Trump not to provide sanctions relief to Sudan. Click here to read the letter.

    "I am deeply disappointed and opposed to the Trump Administration's decision to provide permanent sanctions relief to the Government of Sudan, whose president and other high officials have been internationally indicted for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

    "I believe the so-called progress cited has been minimal, especially in the area of full, unrestricted delivery of humanitarian aid to all regions of Sudan. Further, this announcement legitimizes the murderous actions of the Sudanese government and military, coming so close on the heels of Sudanese security forces firing at unarmed protesters at the Kalma refugee camp in South Darfur on September 22nd, killing at least 6 and wounding 28 others, along with other attacks against civilians over the past three weeks.

    "President Trump and President Bashir should understand that much more progress is required and any back-sliding will likely result in Congress reinstating sanctions. More importantly, as the U.S. now engages with Sudan, our policy must emphasize greater respect for human rights including religious freedom, political inclusion, an end to corruption, and genuine negotiations with all armed actors to achieve a just and lasting peace. No additional sanctions should be lifted or waived until these priorities are achieved, and I intend to introduce legislation later this month aimed at putting such a policy in place.

    --

    Eric Reeves, Senior Fellow at Harvard University's François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights

     

    ereeves@smith.edu

    www.sudanreeves.org

    Twitter@SudanReeves

    About Eric Reeves: http://sudanreeves.org/about-eric-reeves

    Philanthropy: http://ericreeves-woodturner.com/woodturnings-available-for-purchase-dire

     

     

  • Cholera in Sudan is Now Endemic--and yet the UN's World Health Organization says nothing

     

    Cholera in Sudan is Now Endemic--and yet the UN's World Health Organization says nothing

    Eric Reeves  |  October 3, 2017  |  http://wp.me/p45rOG-26H

    Cholera in Sudan now has a deadly grip, continuing to re-emerge in areas thought free of the disease. It is a pandemic in Sudan, which now appears to be endemic. Unless the UN's World Health Organization (WHO) finds the courage to defy Khartoum's prohibition on use of the word "cholera," treatment resources will be limited and the epidemic will continue. Ultimate responsibility for this will clearly belong to the Director-General of WHO, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus (see a superb Washington Post overview of the crisis by Glenn Kessler ("As the death toll climbs in Sudan, officials shy away from the ‘cholera' label," September 14, 2017).

    Laboratory tests by Sudanese doctors have confirmed that the disease is cholera, and yet WHO has conducted no tests on the fecal specimens of victims: https://www.dabangasudan.org/en/all-news/article/medics-cholera-spreading-in-sudan .

    Disingenuously, WHO in Geneva simply says:

    "WHO has not received any lab results to date that confirm cholera in Sudan," said Gregory Hartl, a WHO spokesman.

    What Hartl does not say is that WHO has made no effort to secure laboratory results for fecal samples from victims or to disconfirm the results announced by Sudanese doctors who found cholera in the laboratory.

    The bacterium that causes cholera (Vibrio cholerae) is easily identified in the laboratory---why doesn't UN WHO conduct tests of fecal samples from victims in Sudan? There are no acceptable answers.

    If there really is no cholera in Sudan-a preposterous proposition in light of the evidence at hand-why doesn't WHO confirm its absence by testing fecal samples of those who have died of "Acute Watery Diarrhea"?  Why not bring an end to this absurd skepticism?

    The answer is all too simple: WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus refuses to confront the brutal Khartoum regime over its refusal to use the word "cholera" to describe the disease ravaging Sudan. See in this connection an Open Letter to the Director General of WHO from a group of American physicians, including specialists in infectious diseases. They rightly declare of Dr. Tedros:

    "Your failure to transport stool samples from victims in Sudan to Geneva for official confirmation of cholera makes you fully complicit in the terrible suffering and dying that continues to spread, out of control, with daily new reports confirming that this is indeed a cholera epidemic."

    For its part, as Kessler points out dramatically in his Washington Post article, the United States government is engaged in wildly contradictory statements, a function of pure expediency:

    "As of July 7, health actors had recorded more than 23,200 cases of acute watery diarrhea (AWD) since August 2016, according to the U.N. World Health Organization (WHO) and the Government of Sudan (GoS) Ministry of Health (MoH)."
           - U.S. Agency for International Development, fact sheet, July 27, 2017

    "The U.S. Embassy in Khartoum informs U.S. citizens that there are confirmed reports of cholera cases in some areas of Sudan, including the greater Khartoum metropolitan area, that have resulted in fatalities." (emphasis added)
         - U.S. Embassy in Khartoum, emergency message, June 1, 2017

    The Trump administration is thus also complicit in the suffering and dying that continue mercilessly throughout Sudan. Can there be any doubt that this is related to the impending decision to lift permanently sanctions on this genocidal regime?

    Khartoum for its part has made clear to journalists that using the word "cholera" is cause for arrest; medical personnel using the word "cholera" will be dismissed from even senior positions, as one hospital official in Khartoum has discovered.

    International non-governmental humanitarian organizations in Sudan cannot report what they know to be cholera as such because they will be expelled-at least until the UN's WHO and Director-General Dr. Tedros find the courage to defy Khartoum's obscenely destructive censorship and use the correct word for the epidemic in Sudan, cholera.

    Meanwhile, treatment resources are far too scarce-particularly re-hydration equipment and physicians and epidemiologists who specialize in cholera-and many cholera victims are not treated at all, or only minimally, or simply isolated

    The international community as a whole is disgracing itself by not demanding that Khartoum allow a disease infecting and killing so many tens of thousands of Sudanese be named for what it is: cholera.

    What follows are photographs, from around Sudan, provided by Radio Dabanga, showing how inadequate cholera treatment facilities are--and these are the lucky ones...

    -- 

    Eric Reeves, Senior Fellow at Harvard University's François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights

     

    ereeves@smith.edu

    www.sudanreeves.org

    Twitter@SudanReeves

    About Eric Reeves: http://sudanreeves.org/about-eric-reeves

    Philanthropy: http://ericreeves-woodturner.com/woodturnings-available-for-purchase-dire

     

     

  • The UN's World Health Organization at its most disingenuous: “First global pledge to end cholera by 2030” | BBC, October 3, 2017

     

    This BBC dispatch reveals the UN's World Health Organization at its most spectacularly disingenuous, failing to mention cholera in Sudan; here the person most responsible is Dr. Dominique Legros, head the WHO's cholera programme:

    "First global pledge to end cholera by 2030" | BBC, October 3, 2017 | http://www.bbc.com/news/health-41483903

    by Tulip Mazumdar, BBC Global health correspondent

    Around the world are meeting in France to commit to preventing 90% of cholera deaths by 2030. The disease, which is spread through contaminated water, kills about 100,000 people every year. It is the first time governments, the World Health Organization, aid agencies and donors have made such a pledge. It comes as Yemen continues to fight one of the worst cholera outbreaks on record. [all emphases in bold have been added; commentary in blue italics, followed by my initials, are mine--ER]

    Cholera has been spreading in the war-torn country due to deteriorating hygiene and sanitation conditions and disruptions to the water supply. More than 770,000 people have been infected with the disease, which is easily treatable with the right medical equipment, and 2,000 have died. Many of the victims are children. These huge outbreaks tend to grab the headlines, but there are also frequent outbreaks in so-called cholera "hotspots."

    [No mention of Sudan, a massive cholera "hotspot"-ER]

    Disease of the poor

    Cholera is an acute diarrhoeal infection caused by ingestion of food or water contaminated with the bacterium Vibrio cholera [sic: it should be "vibrio cholerae-ER]. It can spread quickly and widely in cramped, dirty conditions [precisely what we find in the IDP camps of Darfur-ER]. The infection is cheap to treat with rehydration salts, and easy to avoid altogether if people have access to clean water and decent toilet facilities. But about two billion people globally lack access to clean water and are potentially at risk of cholera, according to the World Health Organization. The UN health agency says weak health systems, and outbreaks not being detected early enough also contribute to the rapid spread of outbreaks.

    [In Sudan, the problem is not "detection" but a refusal by the UN World Health Organization to name what is clearly cholera as such-ER]

    Dr Dominique Legros, who heads up the WHO's cholera programme, told the BBC: 

    "We can't keep seeing these huge outbreaks every year. We have the tools at hand to prevent them, so let's use them. If you provide water and sanitation, it's enough to stop the transmission of cholera. We've seen that today in countries like Senegal, where we have been able to stop transmission."

    [What fantastic hypocrisy, given WHO's failure to speak of cholera in Sudan!-ER]

    Cholera is a disease of the poor, and building basic infrastructure for communities costs money. However, there is no expectation of any major pledges of cash at Tuesday's meeting.

    "Badge of shame"

    The charity Wateraid estimates it would cost $40 (£30) per person to provide water, sanitation and hygiene. Its chief executive, Tim Wainwright, says that is "surprisingly affordable." "Looking around the world, the map of cholera outbreaks is essentially the same as a map of poverty and marginalisation. "The fact that this preventable disease still sickens 2.9 million people every year and kills 95,000 people is a global badge of shame."

    The oral cholera vaccine is another important part of the fight against this enduring disease. It only offers protection for up to 3 years. But in situations where outbreaks are highly likely, it can save thousands of lives. Some 900,000 doses of the vaccine are currently being sent to refugee camps in Bangladesh where almost half a million Rohingya Muslim refugees are gathering in squalid conditions after fleeing violence in neighbouring Myanmar, also known as Burma.

    "The vaccine alone doesn't solve the problem, the water and sanitation is a more long-term solution," said Dr Seth Berkley, chief executive of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisations. "In the interim, we need to work to ensure we are doing both." Northern Europe and the US managed to eliminate cholera 150 years ago. Tuesday's pledge aims to, finally, achieve that goal for some of the world's poorest people.

    [No cholera vaccines have been sent to the populations in Sudan most at risk-because WHO bows in cowardice to the Khartoum regime and refuses to use the word "cholera"; this in turn makes impossible the importing of cholera vaccines, despite the desperate need for them-ER]

    Estimated global annual cholera cases:

    • India: 675,188 cases, 20,266 deaths
    • Ethiopia: 275.221 cases, 10,458 deaths
    • Nigeria: 220,397 cases, 8,375 deaths
    • Haiti: 210,589 cases, 2,584 deaths

    [No mention of Sudan, where we may be sure from numerous reports that many tens of thousands of been infected and hundreds have died; the Khartoum regime has provided no credible data and has shown it wishes to minimize the health crisis facing the country--ER]

    Source: Johns Hopkins University

    -- 

    Eric Reeves, Senior Fellow at Harvard University's François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights

     

    ereeves@smith.edu

    www.sudanreeves.org

    Twitter@SudanReeves

    About Eric Reeves: http://sudanreeves.org/about-eric-reeves

    Philanthropy: http://ericreeves-woodturner.com/woodturnings-available-for-purchase-dire