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10 April, 2016 00:00 00 AM
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Darfur votes in referendum boycotted by rebels

AFP, KHARTOUM

AFP, KHARTOUM: Sudan’s conflict-hit Darfur region starts voting Monday on whether to unify its five states, a long-standing demand of rebels seeking greater autonomy, but ongoing instability means insurgents are boycotting the referendum.
The three-day vote is expected to maintain the five-state system, which President Omar al-Bashir’s ruling party says is more efficient but which observers say gives Khartoum greater control over Darfur.
The ethnic minority insurgents who rebelled against the Arab-dominated government in 2003 claiming their region was being marginalised say the vote cannot be fair because of ongoing fighting.
But Bashir—wanted by the International Criminal Court on war crimes charges related to Darfur—has insisted the situation is stable enough for voting to go ahead.
“It is the people of Darfur who choose whether they want states or one region and we are holding this referendum so that no one else can come and say we want this or that,” Bashir said last week.
His ruling National Congress Party says five state governments are better able to care for the people of Darfur than a single administration. Darfur was a united region from its incorporation into Sudan in 1916 until 1994, when Bashir divided it into three states, adding two more in 2012.

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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