Home | News    Thursday 9 March 2006

AU should support UN protection force for Darfur

separation
increase
decrease
separation
separation

Mar 9, 2006 (NEW YORK) — African foreign ministers meeting in Addis Ababa on Friday should call for a transition of the African Union Mission in Darfur to a larger United Nations peacekeeping force with more resources to protect civilians from increasing attacks, Human Rights Watch said today.

On January 12, the African Union endorsed, in principle, that its 7,000-strong mission in Darfur would evolve into a U.N. force. But the Sudanese government, whose forces and government-backed Janjaweed militias are largely responsible for the widespread abuses in Darfur, continue to resist the proposal for a U.N. force.

“Khartoum has consistently resisted every effort to protect people in Darfur, so this anti-U.N. campaign is no surprise,” said Paul Simo, Africa advocacy director at Human Rights Watch. “African states must look beyond Khartoum’s divisive diplomacy and call for the stronger U.N. protection force that is urgently needed to protect civilians in Darfur.”

Since January, there has been growing international pressure for a transition from the African Union force, which has experienced logistical and other constraints, to a U.N. peacekeeping mission. Under the proposed transition, the African Union would likely retain its role mediating a peace agreement on Darfur, and African troops would be “blue-hatted,” or absorbed into a larger, better-equipped, and better-financed U.N. force.

As the U.N. proposal gained momentum, Sudanese President Omar el-Bashir warned that Darfur would be the “graveyard” of foreign troops and threatened that a U.N. force could be targeted by al-Qaeda or other extremist elements. More than 7,000 African personnel - mainly from Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, and Senegal - are already deployed in Darfur. In addition, the United Nations is deploying 10,000 mainly African and Asian troops to Southern Sudan, where its mission is mandated to monitor and help implement the January 2005 peace agreement ending the 21-year civil war between Khartoum and southern-based rebels.

“An international protection force could draw on global funds, personnel, and experience,” said Simo. “The A.U. forces have done a valiant job despite huge challenges, but they need U.N. support. Sudanese civilians will suffer if this transition is delayed.”

In the past three months, top A.U. officials have stated the two principal reasons for handing over peacekeeping in Darfur to the United Nations: the increasing complexity of the mission as security worsens, and the need for a stable budget. In recent months, the security situation in Darfur has deteriorated due to the proliferation of armed groups operating in the region, continuing attacks by government-supported Janjaweed militias on civilians, cross-border attacks into Chad by Darfur-based Chadian rebels and Janjaweed militias, and acts of looting and banditry against civilians and humanitarian agencies.

Although Khartoum is intensively lobbying for African states to retain the A.U. force in Darfur, it has placed in the path of African soldiers numerous obstacles, which senior A.U. officials have publicly denounced. The Sudanese government delayed the delivery of 105 armored personnel carriers, denied jet fuel supplies to A.U. aircraft, and painted government vehicles white to pass them off as A.U. vehicles, thus endangering A.U. peacekeepers.

In February, the U.N. Security Council asked Secretary-General Kofi Annan to begin developing proposals for a U.N. force. The Security Council would need to authorize a U.N. operation for Darfur, but U.N. planning will only move forward when the A.U. foreign ministers request the transition.

(HRW)

Comments on the Sudan Tribune website must abide by the following rules. Contravention of these rules will lead to the user losing their Sudan Tribune account with immediate effect.

- No inciting violence
- No inappropriate or offensive language
- No racism, tribalism or sectarianism
- No inappropriate or derogatory remarks
- No deviation from the topic of the article
- No advertising, spamming or links
- No incomprehensible comments

Due to the unprecedented amount of racist and offensive language on the site, Sudan Tribune tries to vet all comments on the site.

There is now also a limit of 400 words per comment. If you want to express yourself in more detail than this allows, please e-mail your comment as an article to comment@sudantribune.com

Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

Comment on this article



The following ads are provided by Google. SudanTribune has no authority on it.


s
Sudan Tribune

Promote your Page too

Latest Comments & Analysis


Perspectives on Kiir and Machar meeting 2018-06-20 22:48:12 By Santino Ayual Bol IGAD which has been facilitating and mediating the slow-heel Agreement to Resolve the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan shortly abbreviated as ARCISS has unilaterally (...)

SLM’s al-Nur’s response to Troika countries about violence in Darfur 2018-06-20 22:02:28 Response by the Sudan Liberation Movement to statement by the United States, United Kingdom & Kingdom Of Norway on cessation of violence in Darfur By Abdul Wahid al-Nur Dear President (...)

Another electoral farce Sudanese should expect in 2020 2018-06-18 02:08:16 Sudanese Elections Scheduled for 2020 will be Fraught with Dangers andCounterfeiting like its predecessors By Mahmoud A. Suleiman The National Congress Party (NCP) regime’s Elections Scheduled (...)


MORE






Latest Press Releases


The Suspension of Hurriyat Online Newspaper 2018-04-29 07:04:37 Sudan Democracy First Group 28 April 2018 The Sudanese civil and political circles and those concerned with Sudan were shocked by the news that the management of Hurriyat online newspaper has (...)

Petition on the Deteriorating Human Rights and Humanitarian Situation in Sudan 2018-04-22 10:01:20 UN Secretary-General, New York African Union Commission, Addis Ababa UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Geneva Petition on the Deteriorating Human Rights and Humanitarian Situation in Sudan (...)

Abyei celebrates Mine Awareness Day 2018-04-05 08:52:03 4 April 2018 | Abyei - The United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) and the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) commemorated the International Day for Mine Awareness and (...)


MORE

Copyright © 2003-2018 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.