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Sudan's Leader Evades Arrest Once Again— via Private Jet

Leader is wanted by ICC for war crimes

(Newser) - For six years and counting, Omar al-Bashir has evaded arrest and a trial at the International Criminal Court on genocide and crimes against humanity charges stemming from the Darfur conflict , and it appears he may have slipped through the cracks again—this time in South Africa. The Sudanese leader was... More »

HRW: Sudan Troops Raped 221 in Darfur; Gov't Says 0

Alleges mass coverup by Sudan govt in calculated attack on village

(Newser) - Sudanese army troops raped at least 221 women and girls in a Darfur village in a series of organized, house-to-house attacks last year, Human Rights Watch says in a report today. The organization's Africa director called it "a new low in the catalog of atrocities in Darfur."... More »

7 UN Peacekeepers Killed in Sudan

Deadliest attack in the history of the operation

(Newser) - Seven UN peacekeepers are dead and another 17 wounded after gunmen ambushed a team in Sudan's western region of Darfur. It is the deadliest ever single attack on the international force in the country since it began its work there in five years ago. The assault included sustained heavy... More »

Sudan Says Rebel Chief Killed

Death of JEM leader Khalil Ibrahim would be key victory

(Newser) - The Sudanese army said it killed the leader of the main Darfur rebel group in fighting today and touted his death as a key victory. The army said Khalil Ibrahim, who led the Darfur-based Justice and Equality Movement, or JEM, was killed during a military offensive in North Kordofan state... More »

It's a New Beginning Today in Sudan

Millions of southern Sudanese vote this week to create a new country

(Newser) - Today's referendum in the southern Sudan is a "chance to turn the page on the past and write a new chapter in history," writes President Obama in the New York Times . "A successful vote will be cause for celebration and an inspiring step forward in Africa’s... More »

Don't Blow It, World: Sudan Has Chance at Peace

Op-ed: Other nations must keep up pressure ahead of referendum

(Newser) - For Sudan, this might be as optimistic as it gets: Two experts have returned from a two-week visit and concluded that war and violence "are not inevitable" following January's referendum on southern independence. "But only if the international community sets clear lines of acceptable behavior as the two... More »

China: Those Weren't Our Bullets in Darfur

Beijing is trying to block UN report to the contrary

(Newser) - China is attempting to block publication of UN report stating that Chinese bullets were used in attacks against UN peacekeeping forces in Darfur, the Christian Science Monitor reports. The report states that 11 different kinds of Chinese-made bullet casings were found at sites where government-allied militia members attacked UN or... More »

Clooney Jokes About Humanitarian Award

Offers to assist Darfur via wardrobe malfunction

(Newser) - Accepting the Bob Hope Humanitarian Award at last night's Emmys, George Clooney made light of his work to raise awareness about genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan. "I have offered to go to the south of Sudan and stage, like, a wardrobe malfunction," the modest actor quipped.... More »

Angelina Jolie Hates Obama

Actress slams president's Darfur policy in Newsweek

(Newser) - Angelina Jolie “hates” President Obama so much that she and partner Brad Pitt “get in nasty arguments all the time” about him, sources tell Us —and she lets a bit of her distaste shine through in a piece she wrote for Newsweek on Darfur. “When the... More »

Obama Sets Softer Sudan Policy

(Newser) - Though Obama advocated a confrontational approach to Sudan on the campaign trail, his administration will announce a somewhat soft policy toward the country on Monday. Ending months of internal wrangling, the policy is designed use to "pressure and incentives" to bend the government to address US concerns over the... More »

UN Staffers Kidnapped in Darfur

Peacekeeping troops establish contact, plead for their release

(Newser) - Two staffers supporting peacekeeping operations in Darfur were kidnapped from their homes this morning, the AP reports. The joint UN-African Union peacekeeping force has established contact with the abductors. “We are here to protect civilians," the head of the mission told them. "We are not part of... More »

Not So Fast, UN: Darfur War Isn't Over

(Newser) - A top UN official has declared that the "real war" in Darfur is over, but that might come as a surprise to the 3 million or so refugees still living in fear of militia attacks, writes Andrew Meldrum for Global Post. He talks to relief officials who find the... More »

Obama Calls for Era of Cooperation With China

(Newser) - President Obama opened bilateral talks with China today with a friendly speech, saying the US-China relationship would “shape the 21st century” and highlighting areas in which the nations have common interests, like nuclear proliferation, terrorism, and the global economy. He also touched on climate change, noting that the US... More »

Dumbledore Sparks Fight for Real-World Justice

Nonprofit Harry Potter Alliance uses books as inspiration

(Newser) - Harry Potter’s battle against injustice in the wizarding world has prompted fans to take the fight to the Muggle universe, the Los Angeles Times reports. Inspired by moral teachings of Albus Dumbledore, Harry’s mentor, the nonprofit Harry Potter Alliance has registered voters, collected some 13,000 books to... More »

Coach Tries to Make Winner of Hapless Sudan Soccer Team

'I don't think about politics,' Brit says

(Newser) - Stephen Constantine is known for tackling lost causes. He’s brought unexpected success to such hard-luck national soccer squads in India, Nepal and Malawi. “I seem to get the really tough jobs others don’t want,” he tells the Wall Street Journal. Now he’s got arguably his... More »

Angelina: UN Must Take a Stand on Darfur

Jolie writes for Time magazine

(Newser) - Angelina Jolie argues in a Time essay that it's put-up-or-shut-up time for the UN on Darfur. The Security Council will receive a report today on the nation's genocide under the watch of Omar al Bashir, and its response will determine whether the idea of an "international standard of justice"... More »

Sudan Prez: No Crimes in Darfur

Says media claims are part of propaganda campaign

(Newser) - Sudan’s president says his military hasn’t attacked civilians in Darfur and challenges “anybody” to show evidence to the contrary. “What has been reported to have happened in Darfur did not actually happen at all,” Omar al Bashir told the BBC in his first interview since... More »

Sudan Invites Aid Groups Back to Darfur

After getting the boot in March, NGOs to return to troubled region

(Newser) - The Sudanese government says it will invite new aid groups to work in Darfur and let the UN and other agencies expand their operations in the region. The announcement comes two months after Sudan expelled 13 NGOs, including Doctors Without Borders, in the aftermath of the International Criminal Court's indictment... More »

Obama Puts Human Rights on Back Burner, Activists Say

Sometimes confrontation isn't best tactic, administration suggests

(Newser) - Human-rights workers had high hopes for the Obama administration after President Bush’s inconsistent, too-hot-too-cold policies—but so far, the Washington Post reports, activists think President Obama has let rights take a back seat to more pressing concerns. For example, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said pushing China on human... More »

Darfur: Mass Bloodshed May Not Be Genocide

Despite the violence, Sudan crisis may not fit legal definition

(Newser) - Hundreds of thousands of people have died or been displaced in the years-long conflict in Darfur, which presidents Bush and Obama have both called a genocide. But while nobody denies the seriousness of the violence, organizations from Doctors Without Borders to the International Criminal Court say that the Sudanese government's... More »

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