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Sudan describes the human rights special rapporteur as EU agent.

September 18, 2008 (GENEVA) -- The Sudanese government stepped up its efforts to end the mandate of the UN human rights special rapporteur on Sudan Sima Samar describing her as a "European Union (EU) agent".

"The special rapporteur on Sudan, Miss Sima Samar, has demonstrated that she is an agent of the European Union rather than (being) the Human Rights Council rapporteur," John Ukec Lueth Ukec Sudanese ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva said. Samar's report earlier this month offered a damning view of human rights situation in Sudan. The human rights expert said that Sudan carries out "indiscriminate" and "disproportionate" bombing of civilians in the war ravaged region of Darfur. She also spoke of torture, disappearances and suppression of the freedom of the expression in the country. But Ukec denied the information contained in the report and said that human rights conditions in the country are marvelous with the exception of Darfur. "If Sudan is totally devoid of human rights then how can she (Samar) fly into Sudan, and travel to cities safe... enjoying good sleep in hotels and even visits with prisoners?" Ukec asked. "Let Sima Samar do (a) report on Afghanistan ... or in Iraq if she will ever get out of the Green Zone" he added. Ukec said that Human Rights Council had been "hijacked" by the European Union and that countries such as Britain and France were seeking to reimpose a colonialist agenda. But the US ambassador to the UN Zalmay Khalilzad defended Samar's role. "I have to say that I know Sima Samar. She was the head of the Afghan Human Rights Commission, and she was a deputy prime ministereC* She was a great human rights advocate against the Taliban abuses in Afghanistan. So I have full confidence in her and her abilities and her commitment to human rights" Khalilzad said. "Frankly, she used to give me a hard time when I was in Afghanistan, when she was the head of the human rights commissions, on many issues. So she's no one's -- shall we say, puppet or agent here. She's a very strong lady that speaks her mind and is not intimidated" he added. Sudan supported by the Arab, African and Islamic bloc are trying to force an ending to Samar's mission. However the EU bloc is resisting the move and France introduced a resolution calling for extending her mandate. The resolution angered Sudanese officials. "We have not forgotten what France has done in Algeria, Vietnam and inhumane treatment in colonies in recent past" Ukec said. "France talks of human rights, while it accommodates those who terrorize innocent people in Darfur. It talks of impunity, but those who rape women, kill peacekeepers they accommodate in five star hotels in Paris" he charged referring to Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) leader Abdel-Wahid Al-Nur. UN experts estimate some 300,000 people have died and 2.5 million driven from their homes. Sudan blames the Western media for exaggerating the conflict and puts the death toll at 10,000. (ST)

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Publication:Sudan Tribune (Sudan)
Date:Sep 21, 2008
Words:515
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