Top stories from DAWNS Digest.
Omar al Bashir Effectively Declares War on South Sudan
Yesterday, we noted how the African Union warned against the prevailing logic of war that is taking hold between Sudan and South Sudan. To that, we can add there is now a prevailing rhetoric of war, particularly coming from Khartoum As the BBC’s James Copnal notes, if Bashir acts on his word, it means Sudan and South Sudan are at war. ‘Mr Bashir told a rally at his party’s headquarters that the SPLM needed to be removed. ‘We say that it has turned into a disease, a disease for us and for the South Sudanese citizens. The main goal should be liberation from these insects and to get rid of them once and for all, God willing.’ The reference to insects is an apparent play on the SPLM’s Arabic name. He told the crowd that his message to the SPLM was: ‘Either we end up in Juba and take everything, or you end up in Khartoum and take everything.’” (BBC http://bbc.in/I5l8ss)
Blasts in Baghdad and Northern Iraq Kill 30
Yet another major, coordinated attack in Iraq. “Bombings struck several areas in Baghdad and to the north Thursday, killing at least 30 people in the first major attacks in Iraq in nearly a month. The violence stoked fears that insurgents were trying to undermine confidence in the Shiite-led government amid rising sectarian tensions. In all, officials said extremists launched 12 attacks in the Iraqi capital and in the cities of Kirkuk, Samarra, Baqouba, Dibis and Taji. Mortars were fired into the northern cities of Beiji and Saddam Hussein’s hometown of Tikrit, but no injuries were reported there. Nearly 100 people were wounded in the rapid-fire explosions that unfolded over an hour and 15 minutes. Half of the bombs struck at security forces and government officials — two frequent targets for insurgents still seeking to undermine Iraq’s efforts to normalize after years of war and violence. (Time http://ti.me/I8z7Bk)