We the participants of the Forum of NGOs participating at the 37th Ordinary Session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ rights and the 11th African human rights book fair held at the Corinthia Atlantic Hotel, Banjul, Gambia from April 24 to 26, 2005,
Considering the provisions of the Constitutive Act of the African Union (AU), the Charter of the United Nations Organisation (UN) as well as those of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights and other regional and international human rights instruments to which the Sudan is a state party and that as a state party the Sudan is morally and legally bound to fully and effectively implement the provisions of these instruments and respect and promote the human rights and fundamental freedoms set therein without discrimination on any ground;
Recalling relevant Decisions and Communiqués adopted by the AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government and those of the Peace and Security Council on the situation in Darfur notably Decisions AU/Dec.54(III) and Assembly/AU/Dec.68 (IV) adopted at the 3rd and 4th Ordinary Sessions of the AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government respectively as well as Communiqués PSC/PR/Comm.(XIII) and PSC/PR/Comm.(XVII) adopted by the AU Peace and Security Council at their 13th Meeting and 17th Meeting respectively,
Welcoming Resolutions 1556/2004 of 30 July 2004 and 1590/2005, 1591/2005 and 1593/2005 adopted by the UN Security Council on the situation in Sudan and Darfur in March 2005.
Recalling also the Resolution of 4th June 2004 adopted by the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights at its 35th Ordinary Session on the situation in the Darfur region of Sudan as well as Resolution E/CN.4/2005/L.36/Rev.3 adopted by the UN Commission on Human Rights on 21st April 2005 on the situation of human rights in Sudan.
Deeply concerned at the continuing grave violations of human rights and international humanitarian law in Darfur as documented by the International Commission of Inquiry on Darfur in its report of 25th January 2005 submitted to the UN Secretary General and Security Council, which concluded that the crimes committed in Darfur are “… no less serious and heinous than genocide…”
We call on the government of Sudan to comply with its obligations under the AU Constitutive Act, the UN Charter, the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights and other relevant instruments to which the Sudan is a state party, and in particular comply with the following:
1. Stops, with immediate effect, all attacks against civilians in Darfur and ends the grave violations of human and peoples’ rights in particular the forced de-population of entire areas in the region, rape and sexual violence against women and girls, abduction of women and children, and to cease all support, including the provision of supplies, to the Janjaweed militiamen.
2. Provides the necessary support to all international agencies and humanitarian organisations in order to ensure immediate, full, safe and unhindered access to the war affected areas of Darfur and to facilitate delivery of humanitarian assistance to civilian populations.
3. Fully and unconditionally cooperates with the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court in his efforts to investigate and bring to justice all persons suspected of perpetrating war crimes and crimes against humanity as prescribed in the report of the International Commission of Inquiry on Darfur.
We call on the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to:
1. Make public the report on its mission to the Darfur region, which was carried out in July 2004, without any further delay and ask the government of Sudan to implement the recommendations contained therein.
We call on the international community to:
1. Continue supporting the AU in its efforts to help end the crisis in Darfur including by providing all equipment, logistical, financial, material, and other resources necessary to support the rapid expansion of the AU Mission in the region.
2. Take all the appropriate measures to ensure that the government of Sudan complies with the provisions of UN Security Council Resolutions 1556/2004 of 30 July 2004 and 1590/2005, 1591/2005 and 1593/2005 adopted on 29th and 31st March 2005 respectively.
Done at Banjul, The Gambia, on 26th April, 2005