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Belfast to back fight for rights in Sudan

By Alf McCreary

A public call for action to deal with the human rights crisis in the Darfur area of Sudan is being made next Sunday at 12.15pm on the steps of St Anne's Cathedral in Belfast.

The Church of Ireland Dean of Belfast, Dr Houston McKelvey, and clergy from St Peter's Roman Catholic Cathedral will lead a minute's silence, following a number of short speeches and prayers.

The event, which is part of a day of global action for Darfur, is being staged by Amnesty International and a number of other organisations, including Christian Aid, Save the Children, Trocaire and War On Want NI.

Thousands of people worldwide will be taking part in similar events to mark the 2006 UN Human Rights Day.

The aim is to draw attention to the human rights crisis unfolding in the Darfur region and to call for an effective peacekeeping force to end the killing.

Since the conflict began in 2003, more than 300,000 people are thought to have lost their lives, and more than two million have been forced to flee from their homes.

Rape and sexual violence against women and girls take place daily.

Dean McKelvey said: "Despite recent negotiations that have taken place in Addis Ababa, no agreement has been made by the Sudanese Government to send in a stronger peacekeeping force.

"We need troops there very urgently before further human rights violations are committed."


From Belfast Telegraph