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Southern Sudan suffers on eve of independence

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Southern Sudan's long-awaited day of political independence will arrive on Saturday, July 9. But the suffering of its people persists.

In the UK media, The Independent, reports, today:

The UN mission in Sudan stands accused of serious failures in its duty to protect civilians who have been killed in their hundreds during a month-long campaign of violence by the Khartoum government on its restive southern border. Eyewitnesses described to The Independent how they saw peacekeepers standing by while unarmed civilians were shot dead outside the gates of a UN base before being dragged away "like slaughtered sheep." They also said that local leaders have been handed over to government forces after seeking shelter with UN officials. The violence has driven tens of thousands of civilians into hiding in the Nuba Mountains, which are controlled by rebel fighters and where public anger at the UN has left peacekeepers afraid to leave their bases, according to officers from the mission's Egyptian contingent. ...
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