Salva Kiir South Sudanese president asked the contested border district of Abyei groups not to explode the time bomb set by Omar Bashir the genocidal slave master of the South.
Over 40 died in Abyie earlier this month, trying to defuse the time bomb and to decide whether it stays with their master north or joins the free south.
Kiiris is deploying his best trying to calm Abyie in one said and satisfy his once enemy Bashir. Let us hear it from his words: “But I would ask the people of Abyie not to take any unilateral decision to join the south and to give me a chance to find a peaceful settlement with my brother President Omar al-Bashir».
It has been highly explosive between the rival southern-backed Danka Ngok people and northern-supported Misseriya Arab cattle and slave herders. This is where the time bomb is not yet diffused between north and south.
The independence vote of the south was the 2005 centerpiece of peace deal between the Arabic Muslim North and southern Christian Animist /African rebels that ended a 22 year civil war.
Southern Sudan Referendum Commission website showed on Monday 25 January more than 98.8 percent voted to break away in the January 9-15 referendum and become the world’s newest nation.
Kiir is trying to keep peaceful tone by praising Bashir’s “noble stand to respect the outcome of the referendum and to support the emerging new state in the case of secession.”
Preparations must now focus on the period ahead, Kiir said, speaking at the opening session of the south’s parliament, at which he urged lawmakers to “pass and adopt the transitional constitution which will become the foundation of the new order.”
“While we are waiting for the final outcome of the polls, the referendum task force is now left with two key tasks,” Kiir said.
“We have to work out a transition constitution, and preparing the government of southern Sudan for the period after the end of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, at past midnight, July 8, 2011.”
The challenges ahead will be tough, Kiir said. “There is no easy walk to freedom,” Kiir added, citing former South African president Nelson Mandela as an “inspiration for liberation.”
As well as Abyie, Kiir said negotiations were continuing on the future sharing of Sudan’s oil wealth — which lies mainly in the south but with pipelines only running north — as well as issues such as debt, and citizenship, and the demarcation of the north-south border.
“The newest nation in the world is being born — for every newly born baby, there are always challenges associated with birth,” said the southern parliament’s speaker, James Wani Igga.
“We must have the right constitution to address the challenges, which is a long list.”
Excitement is rising in the south at the prospect of independence. “We assure all of you, the promised land is only some meters away, no longer kilometers,” said Igga.
But Kiir urged patience with the referendum’s final results not expected until mid-February.
“In your excitement, you should not cause misery to yourselves and others,” he added, saying the rights of northerners in the south must be respected.
He called for “no celebratory gunfire” on the day of announcement. “The last bullet of the long struggle has been released in the casting of the ballot, and we now have to wait patiently to see whether the bullet has hit the target or not,” Kiir said.
Thus 99 percent of Southern Sudanese voted in favor of secession according to the first officially published by the vote’s organizing commission
These results were the latest indication of a landslide vote for southern independence from slavery in last week’s referendum, promised in a 2005 peace deal that ended decades of north-south civil war. The final official figures are expected in February if the fire of Abyie did not burn the rest.
The website for the Southern Sudan Referendum Commission showed a 98.6 percent vote for secession, with more than 80 percent of the votes from the south counted, and 100 percent counted in other areas.
As promised Omar Beshir, the master of Sudan’s complication exploded expressly on the day of the election his time bomb Abyie the oil rich northern part of Southern Sudan. At least 23 people have been killed in ongoing clashes around the disputed region, an oil-rich area that the British transferred to Sudan in 1905. The 2005 peace agreement called for people in Abyie to vote this week on whether to remain part of the north or return to the south, but that vote has been delayed. In the coming 6 months many bombs of Beshir must be a lot of Deming to be done by the international community before the South to be truly Independence- oil wealth share, boarder demarcations, Abyie , LRA infiltrations, Omar Beshir’s arming minority tribesmen in the south …
Clashes have happened for four days between members of the Ngok Dinka ethnic group, which tend to have more in common with the south, and the Misseriya, a nomadic Arabic tribe that comes in and out of the Abyie region and whose sympathies would most likely tilt toward the northern government.
The death toll was at least 23. Thirteen were Misseriya, according to hospital officials in nearby Muglad. Ten were reported dead in Abyie, said John Ajang, secretary general of the Abyie government.
“Clashes have now entered their fourth day between the Abyie government forces and armed militias,” Ajang said. “We do not believe that these are mere Misseriya tribesman; we believe that these are Sudanese government-supported militias.”
Ajang said witnesses described heavy weaponry inconsistent with the automatic weaponry seen carried by Misseriya tribesmen in the past.
“We believe this is an attempt by the Sudanese government to take Abyie while the governments of south Sudan forces are busy with the referendum,” Ajang said.
The 4th day conflict in Abyie is putting at stake the seven-day referendum is the separation of Africa’s largest state into two sovereign states. The divisions between the Muslim and Arab-dominated government in the north and the Christian and African tribal populations of the south have been festering since end of colonial rule in 1956. In 1983, those tensions erupted into a 20-year civil war that killed 2.5 million people. As North and South negotiated a peace treaty that would be signed in 2005, Sudan’s president, Omar al-Bashir, began genocide against Muslims in Darfur, a western province of Sudan; he has since been indicted by the International Criminal Court for his crimes there.
_____________________ The negotiated comprehensive peace agreement of 2005 and set Jan. 9, 2011, as the date of a Southern Sudan referendum to decide the fate of the two-state solution was supposed to include Abyie, but due to the complication created by the genocidal Omar Beshir it has been delayed and conflict just flared.
As this hopeful and historic day unfolded, and counter to most official expectations, the south resisted provocations in the early going–only to see the initial triumph tested by reports of violent clashes in Abyie.
It is a moment of unaccustomed celebration in a trash and rubble covered with red dust under a broad blue sky. But the spirit of the Southern Sudanese people is a mix of jubilation and determination, as they anticipate deliverance in the birth of the world’s newest nation. But Omar’s time bomb in Abyie the Misseriya and the LRA (Lord’s resistance Army of Uganda) already started taking victims. The later recently kidnapped two girls.
In Juba Crowds started to gather outside polling stations in at 3 a.m. on Sunday morning. Barring massive fraud, there is little doubt the south will vote overwhelmingly for secession—the betting at local bars is on whether the vote in favor will be over or under 95 percent. Omar Beshir is working to hard with his gents that the threshold 60 percent of the 3.9 million registered South Sudanese voters participated in the referendum not to pass, so the South will stay under his genocidal shadow of slavery.
Street signs and billboards imprinted with the words “Vote Wisely.” It is difficult to find any Southerner who wants to remain part of the existing Sudanese state under Sharia law. But those living under the shadow Beshir as middle man working for him reject the referendum. This is surprising, considering the 55 years of struggle and 2.5 million lives that have been lost fighting for independence.
Over estimated 40,000 refugees known locally as “Returnees” have flooded the south over the past three months to participate in the referendum and build a new life in their new nation was an additional shock to Omar Bashir.
Three months ago, Bashir made the world to believe that the voting would have to be pushed back or delayed indefinitely. International attention had shifted away from Sudan in the aftermath of the peace accords, and “Save Darfur” started to sound like a dusty bumper sticker from 2005. With decreased attention came increased tension between the north and the south. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned that Sudan was “a ticking time bomb,” while then-Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair declared that “a new mass killing or genocide is most likely to occur in Southern Sudan.”But renewed focus on Sudan from the Obama administration, including the appointment of Senator John Kerry as a special negotiator, helped turn the tide.
October 2009, China surprised observers by announcing that it would support the outcome of the voting, making it more difficult for the north to suppress the south without displeasing its largest investor.
On this first day of referendum voting, there were, however, two conflicts exploding the time bomb of Bashir. They occurred in the provinces of Unity State and Abyie in the 48 hours before people went to the polls in order to scare them away. Specifics are slow to travel in Sudan, and even local government officials seemed short on detailed information, but unconfirmed reports from the regions indicate that four people were murdered in Unity State and as many as 30 in Abyie.
Reports of the violence have thus far failed to dampen the hopeful tone of Sunday’s voting. But serious hurdles await the fledgling state. A new government will need to be formed, and official independence will not be granted until July 9. This gives the north at least six months to disrupt the transition and derail the secession after the international camera crews depart. And it’s anybody’s guess whether Monday’s clashes portend the coming greater bomb by Omar Bashir.
While President Bashir has earned a reputation as an untrustworthy negotiator, he has said repeatedly that he will accept the results of the referendum. Nonetheless, a contentious issue remains in the fate of the still-contested border state of Abyie. The tribal leaders made it clear that their people’s allegiance is with the south, though they are legally barred from participating in the referendum. Their frustration could result in a popular declaration of affiliation with the south at any time, which could in turn provoke an attack. Tribal proxy wars have proved a devastatingly effective tactic for the north in the past, with the town of Abyie entirely destroyed as recently as 2008.
“If the north thinks they could do something and get away with it without dramatic serious implications, they are making the biggest mistake of a lifetime,” Senator Kerry official observer of the Referendum.
The Sunday January 9th vote is the beginning of the end for the African colonial sacrosanct frontier as endorsed in 1964 Organization of African Unity conference in Cairo Egypt recognizing the colonial pact of 1880’s that announced the Scramble for Africa. The people of Southern Sudan will vote for freedom and will be independent from servitude. They will declare in favor of cutting their links with Khartoum and become Africa’s 54th state. This is the 1st of its kind that an African region becomes independence fighting slavery, religious imposition and internal strife. The slogan of the Africa Union that Africa must unite did not stop the continent from being Balkanized to different micro states. Thus breaking artificially created colonial borders designed to keep the interest of the colonial powers than that of the African people even in post independent period. In 1960s when most of the continent’s states were created with strong force the interest of the colonial powers were working on the ground. The leaders were forced to inherit the artificial borders just to please their masters in the pretext of fear of war that will befall upon them if they do the contrary, except few who took arm and fought but still at last inherited the same share of the cake. These artificial borders they had inherited had been drawn by the European powers who divided the continent according their Marge of in interest in the Scramble of 1880’s. These artificial orders which scramble Africa cut through ethnic groups, dividing peoples and even families. The colonial powers threw together men and women who had differences of language and religion. The dilemma of the then Africa’s leaders were to decide to accept these frontiers- believing that if they reject them it will set every new country against each others throat. But to this day the continent has been victim of the heritage of such wicked misgivings. The 9th January referendum of Southern Sudan is the beginning of the end of these artificial frontiers leading to the eventual unity Africans in respect and reciprocity to one another. In the 1960 the founders of pan Africanism thought that the independence and the unity of the Africans would come with unconditional unity in the post independence period. This has proved wrong the last 50 years. It is now a new era where the colonial boarders will fall and people will unite regionally once they are out of these colonial paradigm like Southern Sudan Starting 9th of January 2011. These news working principles must not be based on colonial heritage but on African traditional historical back grounds. The same principle could be applied to stop the looming Nile war in the riparian states. The leaders of the 9 Nile countries , rather than fighting for the equitable share of the Nile waters based on colonial pact or arguing on rejected regional agreement made by one group against the other (Sudan &Egypt) rather open their doors and go to a referendum leading to regional confederation if they could not make an outright unity right now. This will create a new strong region surpassing the forces of division inherited from the scramble of Africa.
The Horn African dictators are kept in power by robbing their people and staking the national revenue in the international safe heavens- The most notorious are Melese Zenawi of Ethiopia and Omar al- Beshir of Sudan. They both war mongers and are killing their people in mass with the complicity of these bankers that indirectly responsible for the starving and disappearing of millions of innocent in the Horn of Africa. WikiLeaks just started the truth to come to light which was known by the silent majority.
WikiLeaks cables: Sudanese president ‘stashed $9bn in UK banks’
Speculation that Omar al-Bashir siphoned $9bn in oil money and deposited it in foreign accounts could fuel calls for his arrest
Omar al-Bashir, the Sudanese president, has siphoned as much as $9bn out of his impoverished country, and much of it may be stashed in London banks, according to secret US diplomatic cables that recount conversations with the chief prosecutor of the international criminal court.
Some of the funds may be held by the part-nationalised Lloyds Banking Group, according to prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, who told US officials it was time to go public with the scale of Bashir’s theft in order to turn Sudanese public opinion against him.
“Ocampo suggested if Bashir’s stash of money were disclosed (he put the figure at $9bn), it would change Sudanese public opinion from him being a ‘crusader’ to that of a thief,” one report by a senior US official states. “Ocampo reported Lloyds bank in London may be holding or knowledgeable of the whereabouts of his money,” the cable says. “Ocampo suggested exposing Bashir had illegal accounts would be enough to turn the Sudanese against him.”
Lloyds responded by saying it had no evidence of holding funds in Bashir’s name. “We have absolutely no evidence to suggest there is any connection between Lloyds Banking Group and Mr Bashir. The group’s policy is to abide by the legal and regulatory obligations in all jurisdictions in which we operate.”
Details of the allegations emerge in the latest batch of leaked embassy cables released by WikiLeaks which reveal that:
The cables were released as the WikiLeaks editor-in-chief, Julian Assange, accused the US of mounting an aggressive, illegal investigation against him. “I would say that there is a very aggressive investigation, that a lot of face has been lost by some people, and some people have careers to make by pursuing famous cases, but that is actually something that needs monitoring,” he told reporters outside the mansion on the Norfolk/Suffolk border where he is staying while on bail.
Assange has repeatedly asserted that he is the victim of a smear campaign. The Guardian today publishes the first full account of the allegations made against him by two Swedish women based on previously unseen police documents.
If Ocampo’s claim about Bashir’s fortune is correct, Sudanese funds being held in London banks amount to one tenth of annual GDP inSudan, which ranks fifteenth from bottom in the UN’s index of the world’s poorest countries. Ocampo discussed evidence of the stash with the Americans just days after issuing an arrest warrant for the Sudanese president in March 2009, the first issued by the court against a serving head of state. Bashir was indicted for seven counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity last year with a further three counts of genocide added in July. Ocampo, who has never released details of the alleged funds, was severely criticised for the indictment by many in Sudan and internationally amid criticisms the move would inflame fighting in the southern Darfur region.
Despite the humanitarian crisis in Sudan, Bashir has remained popular among many others in the country, particularly those who have benefited from the oil boom brought about during his presidency. A spokesperson for the Sudanese government dismissed the claim, describing it as further evidence of the ICC’s political agenda in discrediting the Sudanese government.
“To claim that the president can control the treasury and take money to put into his own accounts is ludicrous – it is a laughable claim by the ICC prosecutor,” said Dr Khalid al-Mubarak, government spokesperson at the Sudanese embassy in London. “Ocampo is a maverick, and this is just part of his political agenda. He has failed miserably in all his cases and has refused to investigate Iraq or Gaza – he needs success and he has targeted Bashir to increase his own importance.”
“Attempts to smear not only Bashir but Sudan as a whole are well known, and are clearly linked with anti-Arab sentiments and Islamophobia,” Mubarak added.
But experts said that if confirmed, the funds could have big implications for victims of human rights abuses in the county. Richard Dicker, head of international justice at Human Rights Watch, said: “If Bashir were to be tried and convicted, these funds could not just be frozen, but used as a source of reparations for victims … [of] horrific crimes in Darfur.”
Robert Palmer, a campaigner at anti-corruption organisation Global Witness, said: “$9bn may sound like an inconceivably large amount of money for the president of Sudan to control. But we have uncovered evidence of substantial funds being held in a European bank by an oil-rich country in the past, where the head of state had a worrying level of personal control over the funds. In Sudan’s case, the figure is almost the same amount as has been transferred from north to south Sudan under the oil revenue sharing part of the comprehensive peace agreement since 2005.”
In a remarkable series of exchanges, the cables also reveal how Sudan’s mineral wealth had a direct bearing on the ICC proceedings against Bashir, as China balked at action against him that could harm its interests in the oil industry. “Ocampo said China, as long as it continues to have oil concessions in Sudan, does not care what happens to Bashir,” one cable states.
In another cable dated March 2008, a senior French official noted “growing Chinese concern about possible north-south fissures in Sudan and the possibility that its oil interests could be threatened”.
“The Chinese were beginning to see more clearly that Sudan’s behaviour towards Darfur and Chad could only increase the possibility of a north-south rupture will a possibly severe effect on China’s stake in the oil sector,’ the French are reported to have said.
In return, the Chinese expressed “puzzlement” that the French – a member of the ICC and able to influence the deferral of proceedings against Bashir – supported Ocampo’s decision to pursue the Sudanese president, given France’s oil interests in the region. “[The Chinese] observed French companies have oil interests in Sudan as well as Chad,” the Americans stated.
France ultimately supported Bashir’s indictment, but the cables suggest this was deliberately calculated to protect their oil interests. The French told the Americans they believed that firm action on Darfur was the only way to protect oil interests.
Both French firm Total and China, through affiliates of its state-owned China Petroleum and Chemical Corporation, have substantial oil concessions in Sudan, which currently produces 500,000 barrels of crude oil per day .
“It is ironic that China, which postures as a friend of the people’s in the developing world couldn’t give a damn about the suffering of hundreds of thousands of African victims in Darfur,” said Dicker. “I’m not surprised that China is putting its oil interests above the interests of humanity in seeing that these crimes of enormous concern are adjudicated, but I think it will rebound to China’s discredit,” Dicker added.Speculation that Bashir may have deposited billions in oil money in foreign accounts is likely to add to demands for his arrest and transparency in Sudan’s oil sector.”The arm of the law, when it comes to this type of crime, committed by or alleged to have been committed by heads of state or heads of government, has gotten longer,” said Dicker. “There is a long road to trial in The Hague, but what’s striking is a number of other heads of state and heads of government have wound up in court much to their surprise through often lengthy and circuitous pathways.”
WikiLeaks: Sudan’s president ‘stashed $9 billion’
Omar al-Bashir, the Sudanese president, is suspected of siphoning off $9 billion from his country’s oil boom and depositing much of it in British banks, according to a leaked US diplomatic cable.
Bank denies WikiLeaks’ Sudan claim
A part-nationalised British bank has said there is “no evidence” to back claims exposed in leaked US diplomatic cables that Sudan’s president may have stolen £5.8 billion from his country and deposited it in London.
A document among tens of thousands released by the WikiLeaks website reported the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court asserting that Lloyds Banking Group “may be holding or knowledgeable of the whereabouts of his money”.
In the cable, a US official says that Luis Moreno-Ocampo discussed the possible stash of money days after issuing an arrest warrant for president Omar Bashir, who has been indicted by the ICC on several counts of war crimes and genocide.
A Sudanese government spokesman told The Guardian – which has been publishing the WikiLeaks material – that the claim the president had taken the cash was “ludicrous” and attacked the motives of the prosecutor.
Lloyds insisted it was not aware of any link with Bashir. “We have absolutely no evidence to suggest there is any connection between Lloyds Banking Group and Mr Bashir. The group’s policy is to abide by the legal and regulatory obligations in all jurisdictions in which we operate,” a spokeswoman said.
In the cable reporting the conversation, the US official wrote: “Ocampo suggested if Bashir’s stash of money were disclosed (he put the figure at $9bn), it would change Sudanese public opinion from him being a ‘crusader’ to that of a thief.
“Ocampo reported Lloyds bank in London may be holding or knowledgeable of the whereabouts of his money,” the cable said. “Ocampo suggested exposing Bashir had illegal accounts would be enough to turn the Sudanese against him.”
Dr Khalid al-Mubarak, spokesman at the Sudanese embassy in London, told The Guardian: “To claim that the president can control the treasury and take money to put into his own accounts is ludicrous. It is a laughable claim by the ICC prosecutor. Ocampo is a maverick, and this is just part of his political agenda.
“Attempts to smear not only Bashir but Sudan as a whole are well known, and are clearly linked with anti-Arab sentiments and Islamophobia,” Dr Mubarak added.
Robert Palmer of anti-corruption group Global Witness said: “”If this allegation by the ICC prosecutor is accurate, it appears that a UK high street bank bailed out by the Government is holding billions controlled by an indicted war criminal, or at the very least would be able to help trace any funds. If this story is true, I’d like to know what controls Lloyds put in place to ensure that the funds were legitimate – and I’m sure the Sudanese people would as well.”