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US staged deadly air strike against arm smugglers inside Sudan: Official

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March 24, 2009 (KHARTOUM) — The Sudanese government today acknowledged news reports that US air force conducted airstrikes against arm smugglers last January killing scores of people.

The Egyptian Al-Shurooq newspaper reported this week that US planes destroyed a convoy heading towards the borders carrying arms believed to be on its way to Gaza strip.

The report said that the convoy consisted of 17 trucks carrying 39 passengers that were all destroyed in the operation. None of the people on board the trucks survived the attack.

The Sudanese state minister for highways Mabrouk Mubarak Saleem told reporters at a press conference in the Eastern city of Kassala near Eritrea that a “major power bombed small trucks carrying arms burring all of them”.

“It killed Sudanese, Eritreans and Ethiopians [passengers] and injured others” Saleem said.

The attack is believed to have occurred in a desert area in Northwest of Port Sudan city, near the Mount Al-Sha’anoon.

The newspaper quoted an unidentified Egyptian official as saying that the planes that carried out the attack were based out of many regional countries, suggesting that it is likely to be Djibouti.

The official said that the airstrike caused an “embarrassment” to Khartoum which viewed it as a “violation to its sovereignty” and discussed the matter with Cairo in an effort to gather more information to formulate a response.

Al-Shurooq also said that Sudanese authorities conducted “a full blown dossier” on the attack containing images, forensics and remains of weapons and satellite phones.

The rockets fired by US gunships left 18-hole diameters ranging between 160 and 430 meters, the newspaper reported.

Israeli officials in the past have said that arms are funneled into Sudan and then to Sinai, where they pass through the tunnels into Gaza.

The US signed an agreement with Israel last January that calls for an international effort to stem the flow of weaponry and explosives to complement those of Egypt.

American and Israeli diplomats said at the time the agreement includes intelligence coordination to prevent arms from Iran from entering Gaza, maritime efforts to identify ships carrying weaponry, and the sharing of US and European technologies to discover and prevent the use of weapons-smuggling tunnels.

(ST)

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  • 25 March 2009 05:28, by Gatjang

    The sleeping government did not even know what happened in their country 2 moons ago. Now they are looking for more evidences to respond, well, it is too late. If they can detect smuggler, then they should know where Bashir is sleeping.

    Bashir must go and hide in the remote village and someone else need to lead this country.

    repondre message

  • 25 March 2009 07:17, by Lual Garang De Lual

    Dear Mr. president Field marshal Omaaaaar Hassan Al Bashire.
    Could you explain in realities the deadly strike which happened between Kassala and Port Sudan without the notice of your government. We the Sudanese don’t want to be fool by mad people. See Mr. president the way the American bombed you in 1999 and now it has repeated itself, while you are making empty retoric about ICC in Khartoum and Darfur. You are failing this country Mr. president back to the dark days of looting and smuggling of our resources.

    Could you be able as a leader in this country explain to your citizens what had happened if it is not because your government has fallen ill of the ICC arrest warrant fever.
    We all fear that this country will be a victim of your own making conspiracy as the world will take Sudan hostage because of your stand in favouring of impunity and non-accountability.

    Wow, Mr. President because you feel intimidation is the only solution hence those who intimidate other will also be intimidated. There is no sense of panicking because you decided to sent weapons to Gaza so that the impunity happenning in Sudan could be extended to Israeli civillians which will not happen under their watchful eyes.

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    • 25 March 2009 10:46, by Logic

      The bombing of the Al-Shifa (1998) medical factory was a cowardice act by the Clinton administration. For those of you who don’t do much research and just want to rant on such issues with blind loyalties, here are some facts:

      1) That factory was one of the largest African producer of maleria medicine, veterinary medicine, as well as Paracetamol.

      2) It had no connection with terrorism what so ever and this was even agreed upon (reluctuntly) by the US congress, even the UN decleared, it had no evidence of producing mustard gas.

      3) The factory was destroyed for one or two reasons, maybe to distract people from the Monica and Bill fiasca but more importanly it challenged comercial profits of Western phamaciticuls producing the same drugs and suppliying to Africa at a much increased cost.

      The info above is public knowledge, so for the doubters out there... go do your research! This attack is not surprising as the US unilaterally attacks whoever, whenever and however (with a few exceptions of course)and those who support such attacks will never condem it until it affects them persoanlly, believe me that time will come!!

      I don’t agree with supplying weapons to any group but when the country who makes the most profit from selling defense equipments worldwide without accountability disagrees with someone else doing it! please be assured it has nothing to do with Humanity but pure self interest.

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  • 25 March 2009 07:26, by Koja Rubi

    Sudanese government officials including Bashir do speak louder than their strengths. They think they have enough to prove to the world that Sudan is powerful basing on the fact that they stole most of the oil money and are keeping the money in foreign Arab banks.

    Well done the mighty military of USA for the wonderful and unthinkable strike on the smugglers. Now Khartoum must begin worrying for Bashir because he is going to picked any time from where he is hiding.

    God bless America.

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    • 25 March 2009 10:51, by Logic

      GOD DAMN AMERICA and Bashir too! Sooner or later you bunch of sleepwalkers will realize that the US/WEST is equal to Bashir mulitiplied by a billion times!

      repondre message

  • 25 March 2009 10:22, by Pollontino

    hAA hAA... (MABURUK ALEK)MR. STATE MINISTER, Mabrouk Mubarak wake up now if sleeping, and if doing blindfulling... so please make sure that everybody is awake, tell your your master CRIMINAL BASHIR that every single step you take is counted and watch closely. You said that what you have done to the citizens of Sudan is not enmough that you want to reach the outsiders fueling their defferences(Plastine and Israels) no way completely no way.
    The conflict between these two nations which are believed to be sons of Abraham had started long long ago before Jesus and Mohammed.
    Please get bact to your Holy book, read it again other wise you are being mislead.
    Wa Shukaren Thanks
    Pollon

    repondre message

    • 25 March 2009 11:35, by Snappy Diddy

      Mr Logic,

      Thanks for the info, but I have a different point of departure from the information you are giving viewers here. Firstly, the credibility of all this information cannot be substantiated and verified as the reports as per your "research" might not be acurate due to distortion by those who only want to feed the public with sheer lies.

      Secondly, no Sudanese has a problem with one another, but only the regimes in Khartoum, as you may agree with me, are the ones encouraging stupid tribalism, because they have over the years managed to rule the country through that mechanism and they truly wonder today why this is failing...lunatic and unfocused leadership! They don’t tend to read through the lines and not noticing the swift wind of change sweping the entire world!

      Thirdly, you should not at once be angry at the US’s action before investigating if you are a critical thinker. There might be some truth to it even if there is some malice though...Sudanese govenment is worldwide known for molesting its own citizens and that is against huamanity, causing alarm all over the world...as a human creature, even if you are not a Sudanese, you would be sympathetic with the course and plight of the Sudanese - both marginalised and those enjoying limited freedom in Khartoum. Most of us are quick about cursing Isrealites in Palestine but they fail to undrstand that our problems may triple the Isreali-Palestine problems! I hope you will think about those point critically before you could attck anybody or hold anybod culpable for any action as of now.

      Peace out bro!

      repondre message

      • 25 March 2009 12:14, by Samani

        Follow the FACTS of Darfur from the start.

        http://www.viddler.com/explore/frontlineclub/videos/59/

        This proves how these rebels are nothing but greedy, low lives and self interested bandits that can be bought by the highest bidder.

        Listen carefully and understand the facts.

        repondre message

      • 25 March 2009 14:28, by Logic

        Snappy

        I respect your attitude in debating rather than insulting but be careful of the language you use, so as not to implicate my view and what evidence proves to be fact, as propaganda before you research what I have written.

        1) On the wake of the attrocities, the owner of the factory filed a lawsuit against the US Tresury Office of Foreign Assets Control by a reputable US law firm and on the day the US government was legally obliged to respond, the US treasury unfroze all of his US bank accounts. This info is avaialable to the American public which you could verify yourself. If the evidence given for the bombing of the factory were true, why would the US government back down and til this day have not apologized nor compensated for the damage due to their arrogant and imperialistic attitude towards weaker countries (much like Bashir towards non NCP).

        2) The medicine being produced in the factory was being sold at a third of its Western counterpart’s cost due to obvious reasons such as labour and logistics... again you could easily verify this info as there are only a handful of such outlets in the entire continent and could easily compare prices of such medicine

        3) I am within my right to criticize any imperialistic entity be it the US, NCP, SPLM or the EU. I am not trying to deal with conspiracy theories here I only deal with facts hence my criticizm of the US.

        You sound like an intelligent individual so instead of trying to counter my points of argument try to look into them 1st then come back with contradicting evidence.

        The US is a tyrant and an imperialisitic country but they could not succeed in their supremecy if it werent for the blind loyalty of people like yourself.

        Please note am only giving you snippets of info here as there is too much info to type and I simply don’t have the time. It is very sad that most people on this website who constantly criticize the Bashir regime because of humanterian attrocities then turn around and seek the help of those who are guilty of greater attrocities. How ironic!!!

        Do you know how many people die unnecesarily in Africa because of Western patent laws which prevent cheaper versions of much needed drugs or unfair WTO policies which protect only the developed world? TENS OF MILLIONS... so please don’t talk about INHUMANITY in Sudan unless you’re willing to stand up to all forms of inhumanity otherwise you become part of the machine used by the senior and more resourceful criminals.

        Peace to you my brother

        repondre message

      • 25 March 2009 14:51, by Logic

        Yes I do agree with some of your analysis about the Khartoum regime but regarding the attack on the convoy, I completely disagree as Sudan is a sovreign country and should not be bombed at will even if the alleged stroy is true.

        The US supplies highly sophisticated weapons to Israel and whenever the UN wants to investigate alleged attrocities against the Palestinian civillians by the Israeli defense force! The US uses its veto as if an investigation is something to fear if truly there are no crimes commited.

        The US gives Israel more financial aid than the entire continent of Africa each year, now you tell me who needs the help more! Israel or 40+ countries in need of desperate development? I tell you what... forget about Africa! what about the 33m Americans living under the poverty line most of which are African Americans?

        Please don’t believe what I say, I simply urge you to do your own research.

        Selective justice is not jusitice, it is poilitics!!

        repondre message

  • 25 March 2009 17:29, by Mr. Moto Moto

    This is a good message for any would be arm smugglers that their activities will not be condone. Sudan cannot hide behind issues of soveriegnity and defend people who are intend on no good.

    May the goverment learn a lesson from this incident and change its ways.

    repondre message

  • 25 March 2009 18:02, by Shogar

    What i don’t understand is why they kept this strike a secret and still not telling any thing?
    The idea of broder or air space control is not funny at all, forget about US air strike now, they don’t what was happen in 1998? don’t mention the Darfur JEM crossed 1600km on ground inside sudan to reach there? And sadlly in 2004 they have spent a bout 40% of whole country revenue in Defence!!!!!!!!yes its 40% Imagine, that is in their own record, but how about a proper audited accounts???
    And now they are telling us the can defy the world
    bunch of lough

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  • 25 March 2009 18:43, by Klashenkov

    ooh sorry for barbaric behaving of american army out of international law.Russia we the Sudan with the best jet fighter for air combat the mig-29 can shoot out that big bird hercules c130 in 30 seconds only.we are not going fly it fur you Sudanse.we sell to you and you fly it yourself shot that big birds.

    repondre message

  • 25 March 2009 19:15, by liberman

    Let them smuggle the weapons but we will answer them back by killing more muslims. All Arabs and muslims are under the jewish stinky underwear.

    repondre message

    • 25 March 2009 22:19, by Snappy Diddy

      Mr Logic,

      Precisely, I agree with your points. But I would like to correct the fact that there are no "blind loyalist" to US, NCP or SPLM. Every reasonable person is entitled to an opinion, be it positive or negative. I wanted to tell you and those who still believe that the US was culpable for the 1998 bombing in Khartoum, that I disagree with the fact that the facility was used for the manufacture of medicine. In your previous message you talked of the owner of the factory, right? Do you know that that factory and the activities therein, were associated with the most wanted terrorist, that is, Mr Osama Bin Ladin? If that is true, then it means there were malpractices going on there and that would not serve a great nation good to be used as a ground for launching malicious activities when it has its own internal problems.

      Moreover, given the history and black records of Sudan, I suppose we shouldn’t rule out the fact that the US airstrike was justifiable in some way...In the report given here by Sudan Tribune, it has not been clearly stated where the trucks were coming from or actually going...and again, trucks carry arms! They were not military trucks and no independent group/rebels claimed the ownership of such trucks...it is confusing to me.

      The NCP/SPLM led government of National Unity in Khartoum must strive to ascertain the security of its citizen through different means, including flashing out dubious groups which illegally operate in the country and could be termed as "smugglers" lest it is not identifiable from the real smugglers.

      I want us to separate the question of literature from the real picture on the ground. It is a sensible and pragmatic approach to say that our country is ruined by itself rather than applying some dogmatic perceptions of those who believe things are fine when the converse is true. We must come out of such mediocrities and instead, build a new generation that is nationalistic, patriotic and pragmatic both in thinking and deeds. We mustn’t be blinded by our own egos and bad actions.

      By this, I hope I have brought a point home. The debate is cool and I suggest that we avoid anger so as to reason fairly and not to allow emotions to lead us in reasoning.

      Cheers!

      repondre message

      • 26 March 2009 17:21, by Logic

        Snappy

        There’s no anger or emotions involved in my reasoning! I would like to understand your point of the government of national unity flushing out groups in Sudan but you and many others are relying and expecting the help of the US to stop the very siad government from reacting to rebel groups within its own territory- this sounds like a contradiction to me unless you’e being selective of which groups should be flushed out.

        You have completely missed my point. I’ve already explained to you some basic facts about the bombing of the factory but instead of feeling sorry for the Sudanese public whom would have benefited greatly from this factory you would rather defend the rights of the US to act aggressively without substantial evidence! If you live in the US you should be able to access information on the lawsuit filed by the owner of the factory... There was not, and there is still not any substantial evidence to your claim of association of the factory and Mr Bin Laden just like there was no evidence between the so called most wanted terrorist and Saddam but yet the US managed to convince people like yourself, that there was such evidence.

        As for the production of anything other than medicine, you use the word "might" but you want to argue the point as if you’re sure of what they were producing! I am 200% sure of what they were producing and it was NOT biological nor chemical materials for weapons.

        And yes there are many blind loyalists to the West, be it because its their adoptive home or due to pure hate towards their own.

        1) Who convened the Berlin conference of 1876 to divide Africa between themselves? (the Europeans)

        2) Who changed from slavery and colonization to Globelization with the creation of multiple institutions for the benefit of a few at the expenses of the many? (the Europeans)

        3) Who prevents Africans from taking a lead in sorting out their own affairs? (the West)

        4) Who manupilates trade policies that only help the rich? (WTO controled by the West)

        5) Who is responsible for installing dictators around the world for the benefit of international banks/ corparations to continue raping African, Latin and Asian resources as we debate online? (the West)

        6) Who was trying to do business with the very same Bashir regime during the nineties while he was conducting a brutal war in the south of Sudan? (Chevron, US oil company)

        7) Who arrived in Baghdad to sell Saddam Hussain more weapons just two weeks after he had gassed the Kurds and the Iranlians with chemical weappons they previously supplied? (US politicians)

        8) Who are the only people to ever head the so called world bank allegedly for the development of poorer countries? (US bankers).

        9) Who killed so many African, Asian and Latin American revolutionaries because they dared to speak up against the great Empire. (the US/ West)

        Who who who... I could go on forver, so my dear friend I have nothing against European or American people but I detest their government’s imperialistic attitude and double standards when it comes to weaker countries. I use to hate Arabs with a passion growing up as a so called Abid in Sudan but I have learned to understand the causes of world problems and it sure aint Arabs, or Muslims just as it wasn’t the Communists during the cold war as many would like to think. It’s Western governments/ instituations controled by a few sick individuals.

        This conversation could go on for years because people tend not to apply logic to their reasoning, I bet you are one of those who still believe that the US invaded Iraq because it wanted to help Iraqis? because it sure weren’t the WMDs!!
        try to youtube Blackwater snipers gunning down civilians as if it were a video game.

        When are you people ever going to wake up to the realities of world politics and the game the super powers play with your mind.

        I am not a supporter of Bashir, in fact I criticize Bashir on many issues but to be fooled into thinking that the current situation is born out of the humantiy of the West is laughable and insulting to one’s intelligence.

        I would like to recommend a book to you and whoever is reading this post "Confessions of an economic hitman" by John perkins.

        all the best my brother!!

        repondre message

  • 26 March 2009 00:28, by kuduhal

    yeah guys on this web,you did enought as internet warrories before me to correct and challeng the
    madfullness of Mr president,
    i personnally would not really blame Bashir of being unaware of recent tragedy that had occur in the country.

    Because he is like rat inside the trap and wouldn’t mine about the country but the way he would be caught and challenges mr president will face ahesad of him.

    According to my critical point of veiw, our country is going to face tought economic,political international relationships crisis right away.

    But the only way out of this could be that,country authority should remove mr president by electing another person to raan the country instead of wanted current presiden.

    Finally bashir never know that ICC have a power to intercept his plan on the way to arab summit and order it to land down,controllers of airspace never give up thier job

    Sudan is under tought millitry monitoring which justified that the inlet and outlet of any commodity is international observes.

    MA minus opportunity.

    repondre message

    • 27 March 2009 00:36, by Snappy Diddy

      Logic,

      Precisely, I won’t reply to all your "well-researched" points, but I would like to highlight a few issues here:

      1. One doesn’t have to live in the US/Europe to support the US or believe all it has done/is still doing to the rest of the world. Meaning, I live in Juba, Southern Sudan as a keen commoner at Konyokonyo Market, in Southern Sudan.

      2. You accuse me to be a "blind loyalist" yet you can’t ascertain where you really stand or which political ideology or principle you support. This is because in your argument, you tend to criticise the entire West and the current regime of Al Bashir! To be honest, I don’t have a problem with the Arabs, Muslims or Jews, but I have a problem with whosoever contents in human suffering...and in our(Sudan) case, Al Bashir and his machinery are perpetuating human suffering with impunity.

      3. For groups to be flushed out in the country, I am not being selective or contradicting myself...Let me rather reframe what I wanted to put across. By my statement, I meant the Government of Sudan must have been aware of what were reported as "smugglers". In reality, these were neither smugglers nor rebel groups, but perhaps government agents helping in the perpetration of atrocities in another land. They could not have emerged out of the blue!

      4. Again, there seems to be problem with misinformation that we also need to guard against. As you can see/read from today’s report in the acclaimed newspaper The Sudan Tribune, it is turning out to be Israeli attack jets which carried out the January attack on the "smugglers" as opposed to the previous reports which cited the US as the attackers. I don’t know what you make of this, Mr Logic. To me, this is really confusing and the lack of reporting or dissemination of accurately verified information may build masses of uninformed or misinformed society which I do not really want to be part of. It makes us comment with reservation and sheer keenness whenever an eye-catching headline hits on the internet.

      5. The question of the West/Europe/US or the East manipulating the affairs of the world has been there since time immemorial and it is changing with a lot of difficulties to the better. I won’t want to really go into that now, but I believe you know that well than I do.

      6. Finally, as Sudanese or Southerners in particular, I think at this point, we should rather look at our interests than putting the world’s problems on top of ours yet we haven’t ascertained our real destiny. If the so-called sovereignty of the Sudan doesn’t benefit us (part of the Sudanese populace that is regarded as being least citizens) in any way, then we won’t give a damn about it. Let Al Bashir clear all the mess his brothers (predecessor regimes) alone and we mustn’t be geographically be included in to what they messed up knowingly.

      Peace out!

      repondre message

      • 27 March 2009 03:08, by Logic

        Snappy

        We’re on the same side, believe me brother!

        Lets agree to disagree! now lets move on to discuss Sudanese problems.

        Contact me on logik28@googlemail.com

        repondre message

        • 27 March 2009 10:14, by Snappy Diddy

          Logic

          In principle, I believe we are. I know we have more to tackle in Sudan than what the world is saying to deliver to us. We will be in touch then.

          Cheers brother!

          repondre message

          • 28 March 2009 15:46, by mack waweru

            It’s disheartening when a country whose leaders believe is sovreign got its airspace violated by foreign airforce without their knowlege for two months. Where are their intelligent agencies? I doubt that the attack was carried out by foreign power. Why not that Sudan government could do it. There is fear of insecurity in Eastern Sudan since the government is not serious to implement the Agreement it signed with the rebel movements of Beja Congress and Desert Free Lions in 2006.
            Some elements of these groups are currently active training and re-arming themselves again to fight the government. I believe the convey in question was smuggling the weapons to the group in the mountaians between Eriteria and Sudan and the government intercepted it and bombed it out. This would be a likely scenario, but Sudan government was just covering up this because many civillians were killed as well. After the media reported this incident, the government officials started to stamper and wants to implicates others. Sudan is a country where anything is possible can happen.
            Mack

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