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Adams urges Irish government to take urgent step to encourage international community to tackle Darfur humanitarian crisis

1 November, 2004

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams has urged the Irish government to "take immediate and urgent steps to encourage the international community to tackle head-on and effectively the humanitarian crisis in Darfur".

The Sinn Féin leader criticised the 'ineffectual response" particularly of the EU and the UN to the campaign of mass murder and terror orchestrated by the Sudanese government.

Mr. Adams said:

"For almost two years the Sudanese government, through its surrogates in the Janjaweed militia, has waged a brutal war against the people of the Darfur region. Mass murder, destruction of villages, food and livestock, and irrigation systems has been tolerated by the international community. 50,000 have died and 1.2 million people were driven from their homes and into hurriedly erected camps, ill-equipped to deal with even their basic needs.

"The UN has proven ineffectual in influencing the Sudanese government or brining an end to the behaviour of the Janjaweed. The resolutions passed by the UN reflect the economic self-interests of key members of the security council rather than the humanitarian needs of the people of Darfur.

"The Darfur crisis highlights again the need for a fundamental restructuring of the UN.

"Too often in recent years governments have violated human rights while the world stands by. The usual platitudes of shock and horror, and concern have been made but no action taken to challenge the governments involved.

"With an estimated 6-10,000 people dying each month in the Darfur region significant and urgent action is needed.

"The Irish government should use its international good standing, diplomatic resources and political influences and take the lead in pushing the international community, especially the EU and UN, toward a substantial involvement which will quickly alleviate the suffering of the people of that region." ENDS

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