Weekly Update from the STAND Education
Libya, Syria, DRC, Sudan, South Sudan
Libya and Syria
Mustafa Abdel-Jalil, head of Libya’s National Transitional Council (NTC), arrived in Tripoli on Tuesday. In a keynote speech, Mr. Abdel-Jalil called upon Libyans to rally around democratic ideals, moderate Islam and for the country to move towards reconciliation as the civil conflict enters its final stages.
Fighting continues between rebel forces and Qaddafi loyalists in pockets of the country. Negotiations between rebel forces and loyalists in the pro-Qaddafi stronghold of Bali Walid fell apart over the weekend after loyalists inside the town launched rocket artillery at rebel forces. Rebel forces have since moved to capture the town with fighting ongoing.
BBC News reports that French President Nicholas Sarkozy and British Prime Minister David Cameron arrived in Libya on Thursday and were greeted with enthusiastic crowds. The two heads of state are meeting with leaders of the NTC and have pledged continued support for the new Libyan state while expressing their concerns about the challenges the new Libyan government will face.
Al-Jazeera reports that the Syrian dissidents and opposition figures have completed the formation of the Syrian National Council. The council, consisting of about 140 opposition figures both within Syria and in exile, aims to unify the disparate Syrian opposition groups into a cohesive political force.
Following violent political protests that left at least one dead and up to eight wounded, Kinshasa has issued a 5-day ban on political protests. However on Tuesday, the country’s justice minister has pledged a deep commitment to ensuring the November elections are “democratic” and “transparent”. The minister added that the government will "continue to expand the space of fundamental freedoms and reinforce the arsenal to protect human rights."
In response to the escalating tension surrounding the November 26th election, current President Kabila has begun the process of reshuffling his cabinet in order to attract votes in areas traditionally considered opposition strongholds. This is considered a strategy to counter the 11 other candidates who are officially on the ballot, and has included bringing new ministers on board from a variety of ethnic and geographic groups.
Democratic Republic of Congo signed three cultural agreements with the government of Iran. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoUs) in the fields of cinema, culture and news exchange. The Minister of Culture in Iran, Mohammed Hoseini, cited close cultural ties with the DRC as the framework for the MoUs, which now serve as the foundation for future collaboration between the two countries.
There are an estimated 1.7 million internally displaced people (IDPs) currently in the DRC, with the vast majority located in North and South Kivu in the eastern providence.
Sudan and South Sudan
The latest OCHA situation report on Blue Nile and South Kordofan reported that over 155,000 people were initially displaced by violence in Blue Nile according to SCRS (although likely many who fled from Ed Damazine have returned to their homes). Also, at least 8,000 were recently displaced in the Rashad and Talodi localities in South Kordofan according to HAC. These figures have not been confirmed by the UN due to restricted access.
Sudanese President Omer Hassan al-Bashir Tuesday appointed Ali Osman Taha as first vice-president and picked a Darfurian and member of the ruling party as vice-president.
During a meeting with a delegation of the rebel Justice and Equality Movement, US special envoy to Sudan called on Darfur rebels to unite their efforts for a comprehensive and inclusive peace process. Princeton Lyman, met on September 12th in the Ugandan capital with two leading members of the rebel group, JEM vice president Ahmed Adam Bakheit and secretary for presidential affairs Mansour Arbab.
The president of newly independent South Sudan, Salva Kiir Mayardit, on Friday accused the Sudanese government of stopping cross-border trade with his country, resulting in increased prices of basic commodities.
A United Nations official reported that Sudan and newly independent South Sudan on Thursday agreed to completely withdraw their respective armed forces from the contested oil-producing border region of Abyei before October.
The education update is produced every Thursday to update STAND members and the advocacy community about developments with regards to genocide and crimes against humanity. For more information contact the following: Education Coordinator: Sean Langberg firstname.lastname@example.org Sudan Education Coordiator: Emma Smith email@example.com DRC Education Coordinator: Siobhan Kelly firstname.lastname@example.org Emerging Crises Education Coordinator: Tom Dolzall email@example.com
The education update is produced every Thursday to update STAND members and the advocacy community about developments with regards to genocide and crimes against humanity. For more information contact the following:
Education Coordinator: Sean Langberg firstname.lastname@example.org
Sudan Education Coordiator: Emma Smith email@example.com
DRC Education Coordinator: Siobhan Kelly firstname.lastname@example.org
Emerging Crises Education Coordinator: Tom Dolzall email@example.com