UN defends report critical of Sudan

Sudan signs UN deal vowing to increase co-operation with humanitarian organisations.

    An agreement, signed in Khartoum on Thursday, 
    lifts restrictions that  impede aid work [AFP]

    'Rape and torture'
    The report on rights abuses in Darfur by Jody Williams, a Nobel laureate, and her team produced earlier this month, found that Sudan's government had "orchestrated and participated in" war crimes and human-rights abuses such as rape and torture across the Darfur region.
    It urged the international community to adopt a "fully unified approach" in addressing Darfur, and called for travel bans and the freezing of assets for those identified as rights violators.
    Sudan had claimed the report was biased.
    De Alba rejected the claim, saying that "certainly the integrity of the members has been beyond any question, I think they all did very good, very professional work".
    Khartoum's pledge
    Meanwhile, in Khartoum, Sudan's capital, the Sudanese government said it would increase co-operation with humanitarian organisations, signing an agreement with the UN promising to grant visas and entry permits for humanitarian workers.
    The UN estimates at least 200,000 people have been killed in Darfur with a further 2.5 million displaced since the conflict began in 2003.
    De Alba said on Thursday that it was crucial that the council remains "engaged", both for the situation on the ground in Darfur and the council's own credibility.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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