UN mission to assess humanitarian needs in Nuba Mountains

Sept 16, 1999 (AFP)

A United Nations technical mission left here on Wednesday for the Nuba Mountains in central Sudan's southern Kordofan state for a monthlong assessment of humanitarian needs there, a UN agency here said.

The UN Humanitarian Coordination Unit for Sudan said in a press statement issued here Wednesday that the mission will gather "reliable" information for humanitarian agencies to consider for formulating assistance proposals for the people of the Nuba Mountains, following a recommendation by a team of high-level UN officials who visited the area last June.

Led by a senior World Food Programme official, the mission comprises experts from various UN bodies as well as CARE and SCF-UK nongovernmental organisations.

The UN agency noted that this will be the first comprehensive assessment of the humanitarian situation in the Nuba Mountains allowed by the Khartoum government since the conflict between the government and rebels started in the region in 1985.

The assessment, the press statement said, will identify and quantify specific humanitarian needs in the fields of agriculture and food security, health and nutrition, water, sanitation and basic education.

The mission, the UN agency said, would examine all aspects of logistical arrangements for the delivery of aid.

The Nuba Mountains region has been affected by armed activities of the rebel Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) which includes Nuba tribesmen led by Yousef Kuwa, a senior aide to Col. John Garang, the SPLA leader.