I thank Assistant-Secretary-General Martha Pobee and welcome the Permanent Representative of Sudan here today.
For my part, I would like to highlight several points.
Firstly, no military solution can bring an end to the current crisis. Ongoing clashes for the past seven months do not change this reality. Rather, the entrenched position of the parties to the war undermines their legitimacy. The only outcome of the past seven months is to have exacerbated the suffering of the civilian population, aggravated the humanitarian situation and undermined the unity of Sudan and the stability of the region. Seven months of conflict and six million displaced persons, plus a million refugees in neighboring countries.
We regret the inability of the parties to agree on a ceasefire during the recent talks in Jeddah. We call upon the warring parties to implement the commitments they made in May to protect civilians and during the last round of negotiations in November to guarantee humanitarian access. We encourage them to come back to the negotiating table quickly, in particular to prevent any escalation in El-Fasher. We commend the efforts of the United States and Saudi Arabia, which now involve the African Union and IGAD.
We are particularly concerned by reports of atrocities committed against the people of Darfur based on their ethnicity. These incidents, if confirmed, may constitute crimes against humanity. We welcome the work of UNITAMS to verify these incidents, as well as the investigations announced by the International Criminal Court. We encourage the Sudanese authorities to cooperate with the United Nations to verify all human rights and international humanitarian law violations committed since the start of the conflict, and in particular with the independent international fact-finding mission for Sudan. The perpetrators of these abuses must be brought to justice.
Once again, we ask to abstain from fueling the conflict. Sudanese armed movements must continue to resist efforts to drag them into the conflict. Countries in the region must maintain their neutrality. International actors must refrain from supporting the warring parties. The Security Council maintains the ability to review its 2005 sanctions regime at any time, in particular to adapt it to the reality of the current situation.
We reiterate our support for UNITAMS and the renewal of its mandate. We commend the Secretary-General’s announcement of a review of the Mission. This review will provide an opportunity for the region and the Sudanese authorities to express their expectations towards the United Nations.
France and the EU stand in solidarity with the Sudanese people and the countries of the region. The European Union and its member states have committed to the humanitarian response, already mobilizing 500 million euros – a third of the total international response – since the beginning of the crisis. Nine humanitarian air bridges to Chad and Port Sudan have allowed the delivery of 600 tons of humanitarian cargo since the beginning of the conflict.
Finally, I would like to reiterate that we support all the efforts of Sudanese civil society, backed by the African Union, to bring about a political solution.
Thank you very much.