Press Bulletin of the Embassy of the Russian Federation/

 

17-03-2005

Russian MFA Information and Press Department Commentary Regarding Reports on Suspension of Activities of United Nations Mission in Darfur

Question: How can you comment on the reports in some media on the suspension of the work of the staff of the United Nations Mission in Western Sudan?

Answer: Moscow is concerned by news of the evacuation of UN workers from a number of regions of the Western Sudanese province of Darfur. The situation in that part of the country, including in the field of security, remains tense because of the continuing armed clashes, which creates a threat to the lives of the UN workers there and difficulties in the supply of humanitarian aid to the local population.

Russia has been consistently advocating for an end to violence in Darfur and for unimpeded aid access in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions. We have regarded and continue to regard the activities of UN workers in this Western Sudanese province as an important factor, aimed at rectifying the humanitarian situation there. The actions of those who are trying to hinder this humane mission lead only to an exacerbation of the sufferings of the peaceful population. In this connection Moscow expects the government of Sudan in full accordance with the obligations it assumed to provide necessary security conditions for the return of the UN mission to the western regions of Darfur.

We regard the decision to evacuate UN staff as a forced and temporary measure and hope that the work of the UN structures will be resumed very soon.

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