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SUDAN - Aug. 1 - 'UN Relief Effort Must Leave Kenya'.

Sudan accuses aid groups of providing funds and supplies to rebels fighting the Khartoum government and says it had asked the UN to move its relief operations from Kenya to southern Sudan. 'Al Ayam' reports that on July 31, Gutbi Al Mahdi, minister of social planning, had "notified the UN representative in Khartoum on the government's wish to transfer the activities of the southern sector [of Operation Lifeline Sudan] which is launched from Lokichokio in Kenya to within Sudan". (Operation Lifeline is a UN-led relief effort operating out of Kenya and Khartoum, and supplies aid to civilians in both government and rebel-held areas in southern Sudan.) Mahdi is quoted as saying: "They have undertaken financing operations for the army of the rebels and have provided all their supplies". (Pres. Bashir had accused aid groups of helping the rebel Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) and threatened to end their operations. On July 29, an SPLA statement denied the claims.) Mahdi is quoted as saying the SPLA did not cultivate areas under its control because of food, military and logistical assistance from aid groups. (Over 1.5m people have died in the civil war.) 'SUNA' reports the UN had agreed there was a need to review relief operations in south Sudan. (The UN said in March it would tighten flight procedures after it ferried pro-government militia leaders on a relief plane, triggering a hostage crisis.) Mahdi says Sudan wanted to forge a new relationship with Operation Lifeline based on "respect for national sovereignty and transparency".
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Publication:APS Diplomat Recorder
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:6KENY
Date:Aug 5, 2000
Words:253
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