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UN relief official tours southern Sudan stresses need for humanitarian access

Arriving in Rumbek, Mr. Oshima got a first-hand look at a UN World Food Programme (WFP) food distribution facility. He also viewed the only primary school for girls in southern Sudan, run by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), as well as a teacher training facility and a hospital rehabilitation project. Afterwards, he met with senior SPLM officials, underscoring the importance of the UN’s humanitarian “Operation Lifeline Sudan” (OLS), and the granting of humanitarian access in line with OLS protocols. Mr. Oshima also informed SPLM officials of the talks on access issues he had yesterday in Khartoum with senior officials from the Sudanese Government. The Emergency Coordinator welcomed the release by the SPLM yesterday of a detained staff member of the non-governmental organization Oxfam. He reminded the group of the need to respect the safety of humanitarian workers and the principles of the OLS protocols. Mr. Oshima also reiterated to SPLM officials Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s call for the cessation of hostilities, a return to negotiations, and an end to the war for the sake of the people of Sudan. read more