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Sudan: Politics and Government

Volume 491: debated on Wednesday 22 April 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions his Department has had with the Sudanese government on the closure of Sudan Social Development Organisation. (268624)

[holding answer 2 April 2009]: We are gravely concerned about the expulsion of 13 international non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and the closure of local organisations including the Sudan social development organisation. The EU statement issued on 10 March 2009 specifically mentions the local NGOs and calls on the government of Sudan to reconsider their decision.

Our embassy in Khartoum is working closely with other embassies and the UN to ensure the situation of the local NGOs continues to be raised with the government of Sudan. A working group, including the UN Mission in Sudan, the UN African Union Mission in Darfur and the Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs is being set up in Khartoum, to monitor the situation.

To date, there has been no indication that the government of Sudan will reverse its decision and allow the local organisations to continue operating in Sudan.