Now the Sudanese government insists it has not agreed to an additional 2,000 AU troops mentioned by Nigerian President and African Union Chairman Obasanjo on Sunday. Sudan had previously said it would cooperate with whatever the AU decided. [Reuters]
The New York Times has a cover story today on Sudan. Marc Lacey writes about the flexible personalities of "Janjaweed" and how it makes governmental promises to disarm the militias both disingenous and nearly impossible:
If you sent 200 soldiers out to get the Janjaweed, maybe 50 of them would probably be Janjaweed themselves,'' said Osman Mirghani, a prominent columnist for the Sudanese newspaper Al Rayaam who has written frequently and frankly about the conflict in Darfur, sometimes incurring the wrath of the government.[New York Times]
"A Janjaweed is a Janjaweed when he is on his horse with his gun, going to burn and kill,'' Mr. Mirghani said. "But when he comes back to his village and hides his gun he is no different than anyone else. Maybe he's a policeman during the day and a Janjaweed at night.''
We got a note from Geoffrey Chan yesterday from the IFEX, the International Freedom of Expression eXchange. They are a network that monitors attacks on journalists in Sudan and other countries. He writes, "the issue is particularly alarming in Darfur, where there have been tight restrictions on reporting." Here's the link to their website: https://www.ifex.org/en/content/view/full/42/, and thanks Geoffrey. The site details a chilling story of the Darfur news blackout, detaining and fining and imprisoning journalists.