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Friday, 12 April 2013

EU: €27m for basic services in Darfur

European Development Commissioner Andris Piebalgs announced on Monday, 8 April a sum of  €27.5 million to be directed towards investing in people's access to basic services (such as education and health), as well as water management and agriculture in Darfur, a region in Western Sudan.
The announcement was made during the International Donors Conference for Darfur, which was hold in Doha between 7 - 8 April. The conference is part of an agreement signed in July 2011 (DDPD) between the Government of Sudan and the Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM) to promote the peace process in Darfur.
The EU supports peace and security in the region through the contributions made by EU Member States to the budget of the African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID). Also, in 2012, the EU commenced the implementation in Darfur of development projects worth nearly €5 million to improve the living conditions for rural/pastoralist groups and human rights, as well as humanitarian projects for over €45 million to provide life-saving assistance such as basic healthcare, clean water, sanitation and food assistance.
The Pledging conference on Darfur was considered as an important step to mobilise the international community around the reconstruction and peace in Darfur. The EU is a member of the International Follow-Up Committee, set up to assess the progress made so far in the provisions of the DDPD.
Some positive steps towards its commitments have been registered in the peace process in the region, notably the establishment of the Darfur Regional Council.
However, there is a lack of progress in the implementation of the Justice and Reconciliation projects, aimed at strengthening institutions and improving governance at regional, state and local level. The Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration programme have not advanced enough either.
The Darfur conflict has been raging since 2003, with the Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM) and Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) taking up arms against the Sudanese government.

Source: European Commission