Home | News    Sunday 22 August 2004

Khartoum falls in with UN plan to restore security in Darfur

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KHARTOUM, Sudan, Aug 21, 2004 (PANA) — The Sudanese government has furnished
the UN Security Council with a plan outlining measures to
restore security and stability in the restive western region of
Darfur, official sources affirmed here Saturday.

The Security Council last 31 July served Khartoum 30 days
notice to disarm the pro-government Janjaweed militias widely
blamed for most of the atrocities in Darfur.

A roadmap mooted by the UN, which includes setting up safe
areas for the return of displaced people in Darfur was accepted
by Khartoum.

The plan, drawn up last week by the UN special envoy to Sudan,
Jan Pronk and Sudan’s Foreign Minister Mustafa Osman Ismail
requires the government to secure specific villages and camps
and to set up safe access routes and escorted convoys.

"Sudan’s permanent delegate [to the UN] in New York has
delivered the message to the Security Council chairman prior to
distributing it among member countries," Ismail said in a press
statement.

Mustafa said Khartoum had begun implementing the plan by
raising the number of policemen deployed in Darfur and
extending the security radius 20 km outside camps for the
displaced, towns and villages.

Meanwhile, the African Union has indicated it may transform a
planned protection force into a full-fledged peacekeeping
mission to force the Janjaweed to lay down their arms.

The pan-African body already has 150 Rwandan soldiers in the
region and plans to send 150 Nigerian troops to Darfur to
protect its team of observers and monitors overseeing a shaky
ceasefire there.

Last Thursday, the Nigerian Senate approved the deployment of
1,500 troops to Darfur.

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The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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