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Last Updated: Sunday, 27 February, 2005, 23:05 GMT
Darfur atrocities go on - Oxfam
By Jonah Fisher
BBC News, Khartoum

Darfur refugees line up for food
Oxfam is supplying clean water and other essentials in the region
A leading UK aid agency says the world is still not doing enough to protect more than two million displaced people in the Darfur region of western Sudan.

Oxfam, one of the biggest providers of clean water to the displaced people, said atrocities were still being committed on a massive scale.

It urged more support to be given to the small African Union mission there.

Areas where it operates have seen some improvement in security and a few displaced people have begun to return.

Unfortunately it continues well below the radar screen of the international media
Adrian McIntyre
Oxfam spokesman

Yet in the context of Darfur's vast area, these success stories are a drop in the ocean.

Months after its deployment was announced, only half of the AU's 3,300-strong force have arrived.

In the last few weeks, fighting between government forces and the Darfur rebels has died down.

'Rape and murder'

However, according to Adrian McIntyre, Oxfam's spokesman in Sudan, atrocities have continued.

"There is a certain low-level violence against individuals that is absolutely pervasive in Darfur," he said.

"The harassment, the beatings, the robbery, the rape, the murder continues on a daily basis and unfortunately it continues well below the radar screen of the international media and of the international diplomatic machine."

Oxfam urged the international community to step up efforts to protect civilians by providing resources and logistics to an expanded AU mission.

Sudan's government has a legal obligation to protect its own citizens but it has also been accused of arming and backing militia groups which are behind many of the attacks.


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