By Ngor Deng Matem
A huge number of Abyei citizens yesterday poured on the streets protesting with a demand to withdraw the South Sudan People’s Defence Forces (SSPDF) and Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) from Abyei box.
The protesters revealed that SSPDF base in Majak Kol and Rumkor should be relocated outside the Abyei Special Administrative Area meanwhile the Sudanese Armed Forces in the Northern Part of Abyei must withdraw back to give safer environment to the Abyei citizens.
Protesters also called on the international community such as UN Security Council and African Union to put pressure on the Sudan and South Sudan governments to go back to the negotiation table for the final status of Abyei to mitigate the conflicts with Abyei neighbours such as Misseriya and Twic communities.
The protest was organized by the members of civil society organisations and communities.
The head of the Abyei civil society organisations Dr. Rou Minyiel Rou reiterated that the demonstration was peaceful and harmless to the domiciles.
“It was a peaceful demonstration to show our position to the world. Abyei has been facing attacks from Sudan and South Sudan and this angered us a lot as citizens or people. We urged the UN Security Council to intervene to find peaceful solutions to end human rights violations on the people of Abyei. We are demanding the withdrawal of South Sudanese forces within Abyei box and in particular Rumkor and Majak Kol as well as the withdrawal of Sudanese Armed Forces which are known as police oil force from Defara keec in the Northern Part of Abyei. Abyei is a demilitarised zone and we do not need weapons from within. We are also urging the UNSC to remind UNISFA to fully carryout their mandates of civilians’ protection. We urge UNSC to call the emergency meeting to address the deteriorating human rights situation in Abyei,” Dr Rou explained.
In addition, one of the protesters Mr. Kur Matiok also questioned the criteria used by the high level investigation committee on Aneet conflict in regards to arrest the Constitutional Post holders.
“I’m still wondering on the decision taken by the High Level Fact Finding Committee on Aneet Incident, to summon three (3) officials from Abyei and (1) from Twic, this raises questions, on how the committee resolved to confine those officials? Which criteria types are used to identify the instigators of the youth from both sides? The question is if the committee is powerful to confine the Constitutional Post Holders, then what prevent them to summon and investigate those assigned the commissioner of Twic to write a letter to the Chief Administrator of Abyei Special Administrative Area,” he asked?
For their part, the United Interim Security force for Abyei known as UNISFA promised to forward the petition to the concerned authorities and it appreciated the Abyei civil society organisations for peaceful demand of their rights.
Last week, the Aneet investigation committee recommended in their reports to establish security forces around the areas that caused violence between Twic and Abyei area especially in Aneet and other insecure areas.