SUDAN CARE forced to cease all aid operations in North Sudan and Darfur

 Sudan
 Other
 6th Mar 2009

GENEVA (March 6, 2009) – CARE has ceased all aid operations and is removing international staff from Sudan, following the Government of Sudan’s decision to revoke CARE’s licence to operate in the country. CARE is one of the largest aid agencies in Sudan, providing life-saving assistance to more than 1.5 million people across Northern Sudan and conflict-affected Darfur.

CARE has been instructed to close operations and hand over all its assets (including computers and vehicles) in the country to the Government of Sudan. All international staff have been told to leave the country immediately. At least 12 other aid agencies in Sudan have also been instructed by the government to close activities.

“Sudan is one of the poorest countries in the world. This will have a devastating impact on the millions of people in Sudan who rely on humanitarian assistance for food, safe drinking water, and health care,” said Robert Glasser, Secretary General of CARE International, headquartered in Switzerland. “CARE is extremely concerned about how the poorest, most vulnerable people of Sudan will cope as the country’s largest aid agencies are forced to close their programs and this vital flow of assistance is shut down.”

CARE is an independent, non-political humanitarian organization. “We hope to be able to return to the country in the near future and resume providing life-saving aid to the people of Sudan. We plan to appeal the government’s action,” Glasser said. CARE is completely independent of the ICC.

CARE has operated in Sudan for 28 years, implementing projects in agriculture, water and sanitation, livelihoods, education, and health in North and South Kordofan and Khartoum. For the past six years, CARE has provided emergency life-saving assistance in Darfur and neighboring Chad, in what is the largest humanitarian emergency in the world today. Sudan is one of CARE's largest operations in East and Central Africa with more than 650 staff in the country, the majority of whom are Sudanese nationals with approximately 30 expatriates employed to assist people in the IDP (internally displaced persons) camps and rural areas. The Khartoum Headquarters manages 13 sub offices throughout North Sudan.

For further information, contact:
Melanie Brooks (Geneva): +41.795.903.047; e-mail: brooks@careinternational.org
Lurma Rackley (Atlanta) +1.404.979.9450; mobile +1.404.394.8298; e-mail: lrackley@care.org

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