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Sudan Tribune

Plural news and views on Sudan

Sudan may deny visas to UN sanctions panel

By Wasil Ali

April 22, 2007 (WASHINGTON) — The Sudanese government may deny visas to members of the UN sanctions committee who wish to visit the country, the government sponsored Sudanese Media Center (SMC) has reported.

The report quoted an unidentified government official as saying that the government is considering a wide range of options to deal with the committee following its latest report in which it accused Khartoum of breaching the arms embargo and restriction of aerial activity in Darfur.

A panel of experts formed by the UN sanctions committee to monitor U.N. sanctions against Sudan accused the government in a report of violating a U.N. arms embargo by flying military aircraft, weapons and ammunition into Darfur and disguising planes to look like U.N. aircraft.

The report was leaked to the press prompting an angry response from the Sudanese government describing the allegations by the panel as fabrications. UN Security Council members China, Russia and Qatar blocked the public release of the report.

The Sudanese official told SMC that the government is contemplating a formal protest to the UN and demanding an apology for “endorsing unconfirmed allegations by the UN panel”. The official went further to suggest that Sudan may file a complaint against the UN panel before the International Court of Justice for “smearing Sudan’s reputation”.

The Security Council sanctions committee concerning Sudan was established pursuant to resolution 1591 in March 2005 to oversee the sanctions measures set forth by the resolutions which include arms embargo, travel bans and assets freeze on designated individuals.