The Joint Monitoring Mission Situation Report
11 - 18 August 2004


Commander's Assessment

1. Assessment.
The situation in the Nuba Mountains remains calm. JMC is pleased that it has now been able to resume inspections of GOS 15th Division units in the JMC's AOR.

2. Concerns.
Apart from the operational issues below, the Mission's greatest concern is the current budgetary situation which threatens the cessation of operations, and the consequent formation of a security vacuum in the Nuba, in late September. Otherwise:

  1. JMC teams have sighted an increased number of small groups of armed SPLA soldiers over the last few weeks.
  2. The stolen GOS car has still not been released by SPLA. Stalemate prevails despite continuing JMC efforts to mediate.
  3. At considerable expense in man-hours and helicopter flying hours, JMC continues to mediate in the Karlanya killing of a nomad. Another meeting is set for 23 Aug.

3. Intentions.

  1. In response to the budgetary shortfall, Head of Mission (HOM) is approaching the Friends of Nuba Mountain(FONM) in advance of the next FONM meeting on 2 Sep.
  2. Operationally, the HOM is visiting key personalities from both Parties in an effort to resolve our concerns and maintain the continuing support for the Nuba Mountains Cease Fire Agreement and the broader peace process.
  3. JMC is currently seeking a date when the military planning staff from the UN Advance Mission can conduct a short familiarisation visit to Tillo.

4. Mines and Mine Clearing.

  1. Land Mine Action (LMA). Operations continued on Katcha AP minefield; cleared 531sqm (three AP mine No 4, one UXO Hgr F1). The second team continued with preparatory work on Krongo AP minefield. Destroyed stored munitions and mines in Shatt Damam 14 Aug, 117 items of munitions (82 mm mortar bombs etc) and 28 AP mines (No 4 and Pomz).
  2. Danish Church Aid (DCA). DCA has started refresher training.
  3. Nuba Mountains Solidarity Abroad (NMSA). NTR
  4. RONCO Consulting Corporation (JMM team). RONCO has suspended demining operations in the Nuba region until end Sep.
  5. Fondation Suisse de Deminage. FSD conducted refresher training of team members and medics.
  6. Additional Mine Activities. The two SLIRI impact survey teams have conducted impact survey in Walli, Katla, Jullud, Kallandi and Kabila. The SLIRI impact survey teams will continue survey operations next week in the Kadugli area.
  7. MRE Activities.
    1. DCA. OSIL and JASMAR MRE teams started refresher training.
    2. SC (US). Continued to conduct MRE in the GoS areas of the Nuba Mountains.
    3. UNMAS MRE. Conducted a visit to Sama to investigate an incident where a cow actuated an AP mine.


  1. Water. The repair unit of Royal Dutch Aid (an initiative of Foundation Royally United, an association of companies and institutions awarded the designation "Royal" by HM the Queen of the Netherlands) and founded by former JMC monitor Frank van der Vorm, rehabilitated or installed more than 50 hand pumps in cooperation with WUS (Water and Environmental Sanitation, UNICEF, Swiss Development Agency). For more information, see
  2. FAO. The Food and Agricultural Organisation (in cooperation with the International Fund for Agricultural Development and the South Kordofan State Ministry of Agriculture) organised this week a three-day workshop about setting up seed banks. Participants (both men and women) came from ten GoS administered villages in Petrol (Sector II) and Boram (Sector III) localities. In the past several villages had storage facilities for a variety of seeds. Farmers received seeds for free provided they replenished stocks after the harvest. The programme did, however, not have the desired effect due to lack of follow-up. This new attempt aims at food security ("in quantity and quality") and poverty reduction. Different varieties of seeds will be made available (under the same condition) and, with proper storage, the programme should produce results. Should that indeed be the case, more villages will follow. At the opening the Director-General of the Ministry of Agriculture, Mr Ahmed Adam Omar, not only mentioned the importance of providing good quality seed, but also the need to expand mechanized farming "once the time and place are right." A total of 4,525,000 feddans (1 feddan = 0,413 ha) are expected to be under cultivation this season of which 1,860,000 are in the traditional sector and 2,665,000 in the mechanized sector.
  3. Food security. According to FAO the peak of the "hunger gap" (the period between June, when the store food runs out, and August, when new harvests are expected) is known to be in July and August each year. The situation this year seems to be particularly worse in some GoS administered areas. South Kordofan State has declared a situation of "starvation" in a number of villages south of Kadugli including Shatt Daman and Shatt Mazarik (Sector IV) with people living on roughage during the past few weeks (as reported by UNICEF, Save the Children - US and FAO). Interestingly, WFP distributed recently a three months food ration in this area. Explanations may vary from a higher number of returnees than expected to "targeting the wrong people." A joint inter-agency team will visit the villages this week.

Chief of Staff
For Head of Mission