ME and Ophelia

Sunday, June 20, 2004

Second plane leaves on Friday

A plane carrying emergency food and equipment took off for Sudan today, says the Scotsman:

Six tonnes of food, tents and plastic sheeting were on the flight bound for Nyala in southern Darfur.

Four Toyota vehicles and temporary warehouses were also on the flight which left Oslo this morning.

The aid plane was jointly organised and funded by the UK-based Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (Cafod) and Norwegian Church Aid.

Cafod staff in Sudan will race to deliver aid to villages in Darfur before the rainy season starts early next month.

A second Cafod-funded aid plane is due to set off for Sudan on Friday.

See details on further aid sent to Sudan, in June 17 post entitled "UK is second biggest bilateral donor in the world to Sudan".

Update June 21: " Two million could starve unless aid gets through. As militia attacks continue, Marcus Prior of the UN World Food Programme in Darfur warns that the rainy season is about to accelerate the disaster.

Statement via U.S. Newswire of John Kerry on World Refugee Day and the Need for Action in Darfur:

"The United States must lead the UN Security Council to immediately impose tough and effective sanctions on the government of Sudan, unless it moves without delay to act on its stated commitment to disarm militias and allows full, unimpeded access for humanitarian assistance. The Security Council should also provide authorization, under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, for an international humanitarian intervention. Advance authorization will signal to the Sudanese government that the international community will not acquiesce in continued dying in Darfur and would help accelerate preparations for intervention, should that prove necessary.

"Because of the urgency of the crisis we must also be ready to take additional measures to pressure the Sudanese government: time is not on the side of those displaced by the violence. The coming rains will further limit humanitarian access, and disease could kill hundreds of thousands in crowded camps."

# posted by Ingrid J. Jones @ 6/20/2004
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