Last Friday, we posted a blog entitled Actions Speak Louder than Words, taking a look at the Sudanese Government’s declaration of an "immediate, unconditional" ceasefire on November 15, two days beforehand. There was much skepticism from all sides about the declaration, as the Government of Sudan has consistently broken almost every ceasefire it has ever signed. On Friday, we wrote
"the Government of Sudan has by all means earned the skepticism with which the world looks at it, and as an international community we cannot by any stretch of the imagination afford to be naïve enough to take Bashir’s promises at face value… We cannot afford, and Darfuris cannot afford, to believe in ink on a paper before we see action on the ground."
The Government of Sudan once again justified the skepticism we spoke of in our last blog post. As the blog post was being written, attacks had already begun in Dafur. According to the Sudan Tribune,
"President Omer Al-Bashir’s announcement of a ceasefire on Wednesday was followed by two days of attacks on Friday and Saturday, according to rebel and UN sources.The army and air forces launched multiple attacks along different stretches of a main road into Chad, which Sudanese-backed forces invaded in each of the last three dry seasons, allegedly. Beginning on Friday morning, government Antonov planes bombed for several hours near a main road between Koribia and Um Mahareik, confirmed many rebel commanders"
The ceasefire had lasted approximately 72 hours.
The Sudanese Government denied the claims, saying that the Government had been bombing a set of bandits robbing a relief convoy, and that there was no ceasefire for Darfur "bandits".
The patterns have been painfully evident for a long time: the Sudanese Government has consistently violated agreement after agreement after agreement, often when the ink is still dry on the paper. The International Community encourages this behavior through the level of impunity we allow Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir to have.
The saying goes: "Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me…"The international community once again looks the fool, and Bashir once again walks away with impunity.
72 hours of silence in the midst of almost 6 years of conflict; we are not that hard of hearing. The international community can no longer claim it ignorance, nor can we afford to play the part of the fools anymore.