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The report of U.N. special rapporteur for human rights in Sudan Dr. Leonardo Franco to the General Assembly on October 14, 1999, sounded the alarm about displacement in the oilfields: he noted that the May 1999 government assault on Ruweng County had caused many persons to become internally displaced.870 The new special rapporteur on human rights in Sudan, appointed in late 2000, Gerhard Baum, declared to the April 2001 session of the U.N. Commission on Human Rights that the situation of human rights in Sudan in 2000, specifically with regard to the oilfields, was serious;871 in June 2001, he warned that the situation of human rights in 2001 was worse than the year before, and that oil was fueling the conflict.872 870 “Report on the situation of human rights in the Sudan,” prepared for the General Assembly by Leonardo Franco, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, A/54/467, agenda item 117 (c), October 19, 1999.
871 “During my visit I gathered further evidence that oil exploitation leads to an exacerbation of the conflict with serious consequences on the civilians. More specifically, I received information whereby the Government is resorting to forced eviction of local population and destruction of villages to depopulate areas and allow for oil operations to proceed unimpeded. I was informed that all the villages around Nhialdiu, in Nimne, south of Bentiu, have been burnt to the ground and crop has been destroyed.
Similarly, all the villages along the road up to Pulteri [Pultutni], in the surrounding of the oilfields at Rier, have been razed.” Oral statement of the special rapporteur on human rights in Sudan Gerhart Baum to the U.N. Commission on Human Rights, Geneva, March 29, 2001, http://www.unhchr.ch/huricane/huricane.nsf/0/072FE7F713DE0F4FC1256A29002A3757?opendocument (accessed sSeptember 16, 2003).
872 "There is a bad climate in Sudan as far as human rights are concerned.... The situation now is worse than one year before....
It is a fact that oil is fueling the war," Gerhart Baum said in London. Mara D. Bellaby, "Human rights violations in Sudan are increasing, official says," AP, London, June 27, 2001.
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U.N. special rapporteur Baum stated, among other concerns about the oil-displaced persons, that none of those displaced who fled to Khartoum seemed to have benefited from any kind of compensation for being relocated “in spite of information to the contrary, as provided by the Government in March .”873 These comments were made to the General Assembly in November 2001.
The special rapporteur stated in his January 2002 report to the U.N. Commission on Human Rights that “the overall human rights situation has not improved since the presentation of his interim report” to the U.N. General Assembly in November 2001.874 He specifically linked oil exploitation to human rights abuses. He interviewed internally displaced persons from Upper Nile in Khartoum and in southern Sudan, and noted “that oil exploitation continued to cause widespread displacement and access to the area remains extremely difficult....”875 He also reiterated his strong belief that the right to development cannot justify the disregard of other human rights. The Special Rapporteur believes that oil exploitation is closely linked to the conflict which... is mainly a war for the control of resources and, thus, power. Bearing in mind the adverse impact of oil exploitation on the human rights situation, he therefore remains convinced that the monitoring of the human rights situation in the oilfields, as well as considering the human rights-related social and economic implications deriving from oil exploitation, including the use of oil revenues, are part and parcel of his mandate.876 873 Statement of special rapporteur on human rights in Sudan, to U.N. General Assembly, A/56/336, New York, September 7, 2001, http://www.unhchr.ch/huridocda/huridoca.nsf/AllSymbols/6AAED3320D897CC9C1256AE1004CEAE3/$File/N0153058.pdf?OpenEle ment (accessed August 13, 2003).
874 Report of the special rapporteur, Gerhart Baum, to the U.N. Commission on Human Rights, “Situation of human rights in the Sudan,” E/CN.4/2002/46, Geneva, January 23, 2002, http://www.unhchr.ch/Huridocda/Huridoca.nsf/TestFrame/64639579934bf6dcc125669d002cfbcd?opendocument (accessed June 20, 2002).
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He reported that “oil has seriously exacerbated the conflict while deteriorating the overall situation of human rights,” and said that he had received information that “oil exploitation is continuing to cause widespread displacement....”877 His interviews with displaced persons from the oil areas pointed to “bombings by Antonov planes, often followed by attacks by helicopter gunships aimed at clearing the land around the oilfields.... some fled naked, and were forced to run for up to a month before reaching a safe haven.”878 He specifically refuted the government’s argument that people move to the north rather than to the south to look for peace, because “people fled wherever they could.”879The Special Rapporteur’s reports in 2002 and 2003 were similarly urgent.880 The relief situation belatedly turned around when in October 2002 the government and the SPLM/A agreed on unimpeded humanitarian access to all areas for people in need, as part of their standsill agreement during the second round of peace talks under IGAD auspices in Kenya.881 Even as access 877 Ibid.
880 “Report on the situation of human rights in the Sudan,” prepared for the U.N. Commission on Human Rights by Gerhart Baum, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, E/CN.4/2003/42, January 6, 2003, http://www.unhchr.ch/huridocda/huridoca.nsf/AllSymbols/898215E39269A2A3C1256CD3004BA3D8/$File/G0310060.pdf?OpenEle ment (accessed August 13, 2003); “Report on the situation of human rights in the Sudan,” prepared for the U.N. General Assembly by Gerhart Baum, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Sudan, A/57/326, August 20, 2002, http://www.unhchr.ch/huridocda/huridoca.nsf/AllSymbols/BFD92A8B2481E657C1256C5D003360C5/$File/N0253192.pdf?OpenEle ment (accessed August 13, 2003). “The Special Rapporteur has continued to receive alarming information pointing to the continuation of grave human rights abuses linked to oil exploitation, aimed at depopulating oil-rich areas to ensure their control.” Ibid.
881 U.N. OLS (Southern Sector) press release, “UN and Aid Agencies welcome agreement between Sudan Government and Rebels,” Nairobi, October 15, 2002; Memorandum signed by Dr Sulaf el Din Salih (for the government of Sudan), Elijah Malok (for the SPLM/A), and Ronald Sibanda (for the U.N.), “Meeting Held On The Implementation Of Clause 5 Of The Machakos Mou On Unimpeded Humanitarian Access,” Nairobi, 25-26 October 2002. According to a top U.S. AID official, Roger Winter, the Sudanese government has substantially complied with the humanitarian access agreement, although it was responsible for major access
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dramatically improved in other areas in and outside the south, however, Western Upper Nile/Unity State continued to be an area where the government intermittantly blocked humanitarian access to the needy persons it had displaced from the oilfield areas—and violated the ceasefire also agreed to in October 2002.
After years of trying, the Sudanese government finally succeeded in defeating the mandate of the UNCHR’s special rapporteur on human rights in Sudan in April 2003 and silencing that official critic of forced displacement and misery in the oil areas.882 Oil Developments Oil Production Increases in Blocks 1, 2, and 4 Talisman’s general manager in Sudan, Ralph Capeling, announced in early January 2001 that the GNPOC consortium planned to drill seventeen exploration wells and twenty-five development wells in its Sudan blocks. 883 The GNPOC production target for 2001, an average 200,000 barrels per day, would be exceeded, Capeling predicted.884 In May 2001, Capeling announced that GNPOC was producing oil in six fields and would increase to about ten fields within twelve months. “It is better than Talisman expected. When we came in October problems for almost two decades. http://commdocs.house.gov/committees/intlrel/hfa87089.000/hfa87089_0f.htm (accessed August 13, 2003).
882 U.N. Commission on Human Rights draft resolution E/CN.4/2003/L.35 on human rights in the Sudan was rejected 24-26 (with three abstentions) at the 59th session of the Commission on April 16, 2003. U.N. Commission on Human Rights, http://www.unhchr.ch/html/menu2/2/59chr/voting16pm.htm (accessed August 14, 2003).
883 “Sudan consortium to drill 17 exploration wells in 2001,” Reuters, Khartoum, January 9, 2001.
884 The 2000 production target was 165,000 barrels per day, which was exceeded by the actual production of 180,000 b/d. Ibid.
1998, we thought we were buying 600 million barrels, but what we got was 917 million,” Capeling told the press.885 He predicted that GNPOC production would rise to 250,000 barrels per day by 2003, and that level of production could be maintained for some time.886 In July 2001, the Sudanese government energy and mining minister Awad Ahmed al Jaz officially opened the new GNPOC field called “Bamboo,” said to be thirty-five kilometers north of Heglig (on the northern side of the north-south border).887 He announced it was producing 15,000 barrels of oil per day from eleven wells.888 Talisman announced in January 2002 that it spent U.S. $ 125 million in exploration and development in Sudan in 2001, a jump from its 2000 spending (U.S. $ 70 million). It projected spending slightly less in 2002, U.S. $ 115 million. Almost three-quarters of this budget would be allocated to projects at Bamboo and Munga in Block 4, where seven wells would be drilled (thirty-eight wells in all would be drilled in the GNPOC concession in 2002).889 Talisman’s projections indicate production from the GNPOC concession would peak in 2005 at 250,000 b/d and then would drop off yearly and rather sharply, reaching 40,000 b/d in 2020, and continuing to 885 Andrew England, “Sudan’s oil production doing better than anticipated,” AP, Khartoum, May 10, 2001.
886 Ibid. Talisman budgeted U.S. $ 66 million and $ 133 million for exploration and development in 2000 and 2001, respectively.
“Sudan consortium to drill 17 wells,” January 9, 2001. This included “including pipeline and central processing facility upgrades....
” Talisman press release, “Talisman’s 2001 Growth Supported by $ 1.7 Billion Exploration and Development Program,” Business Wire (Vancouver), Calgary, January 23, 2001.
887 Bamboo, because of its location north of Heglig, was considered a “low-risk” area and was protected by only fifty government army troops housed in canvas tents outside the main defensive earth wall. Nicholas Coughlan, quoted in “Report of an Investigation into Oil Development,” p. 28. “Sudan opens oilfield producing 15,000 bpd – paper,” Reuters, Khartoum, July 28, 2001, quoting the pro-government newspaper Akhbar al Youm.
889 Talisman press release, “Talisman Expects Strong Production Growth in 2002, $ 2 Billion in Spending,” Calgary, January 14, 2002.
decrease after that.890 Thus, the government would have to open other oil fields if it were to maintain its revenue flow.891 Lundin Makes a “Significant Oil Discovery” in Block 5A in 2001, Suspends Operations Again in 2002 The government looked to Block 5A for the next source of oil revenue. Shortly after the January 2001 inauguration of the road leading to Lundin’s drilling site in Block 5A, testing commenced on the Thar Jath-1 well (Ryer).892 In early March 2001, Lundin was “pleased to announce” it had “made a significant oil discovery on Block 5A, onshore Sudan.”893 CEO Ian H. Lundin commented, “This is a significant and exciting event for Lundin Oil. We have confirmed that the trend of prolific oilfields as seen in Blocks 1, 2 and 4 operated by the GNPOC consortium, extends into our Block.”894 Lundin then moved its exploratory drill to a second exploration site, called Jarayan-1, approximately twelve kilometers southeast of Thar Jath-1/Ryer.895 The well was not successful, however, and Lundin encountered only “sub-commercial quantities of oil” there, and moved the drilling rig back to the first location. Lundin noted that it, its partners, and the government of Sudan were “committed to the fast track development of the Thar Jath field through the installation of a pipeline connecting Thar Jath to the main trunk line that goes to Port Sudan,” i.e., the GNPOC pipeline.896 890 PFC strategic studies report findings (August 2002), http://www.csis.org/africa/0208_SudanPFCSum.pdf (accessed August 21, 2003).
891 Talisman, CSIS presentation, April 2002.
892 Lundin Oil press release, “Lundin Oil Commences Testing on Thar Jath,” Geneva, January 30, 2001.
893 Lundin Oil press release, “Lundin Strikes Oil In Sudan,” Business Wire (Vancouver), March 5, 2001.
896 “Lundin Oil: Report for the Six Months ended 30 June 2001,” Stockholm, August 9, 2001.
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Cmdr. Peter Paar had been guarding Lundin’s operations since mid-2000, supplied by the Sudanese government. When his differences with SPLA Cmdr. Peter Gatdet were settled in August 2001, Cmdr.
Peter Paar joined with the SPLA at the start of the dry season in November 2001 to attack the Lundin installations and ambush government convoys to the Lundin rig site at Ryer/Thar Jath.
Because of adverse military developments, Lundin suspended operations in Block 5A on January 22, 2002 (see below, “Lundin Suspends Operations Due To ‘Insecurity,’ 2002,”).
New Blocks to be Exploited The government also moved ahead with allocating the rights to other concession areas neighboring Blocks 1, 2, and 4 and Block 5A. Petronas was to be the lead partner, with Sudapet, OMV, and Lundin participation, in the development of Block 5B, south of Block 5A, Petronas announced in July 2000.897 The main towns in Block 5B were Nyal and Ganyliel.