Sudan says UN peace force in Darfur unwelcome
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Sudan does not want another force on the ground
Latest report from Reuters says Sudan on January 13 rejected a suggestion by UN head Kofi Annan that US and European troops be sent to Darfur, saying the international community should give more cash to African forces already on the ground. Extracts from the report:
"We think that the African Union is doing a good job and so far they have not said they are unable to do that job," [Sudanese] Foreign Minister Lam Akol told Reuters.
"Naturally what should happen is to give them the money they want, not to complicate matters by involving another force on the ground," he said.
Darfur rebels would welcome foreign troops
One of two main Darfur rebel groups, the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA), said it would welcome U.S. troops.
"If the Americans came they would be preferable to the African Union who so far have failed in their duties to protect civilians," SLA Vice President al-Raya Mahmoud Juma'a said.
"They (the African Union) have enough forces and equipment, but they still cannot do their job and stop the attacks," he told Reuters from Darfur.
The rebel Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) said the nationality of the force did not matter. But JEM spokesman Ahmed Hussein said more troops were needed with a stronger mandate to protect civilians.
End of March decision on AU Darfur Mission handover to UN
The AU, in a statement on Friday, said it "expresses its support, in principle, to a transition from (an AU) to a UN operation".
It added it planned to meet before the end of March to make a final decision on any future handover to the United Nations.
What peace to keep and monitor?
[Sudanese Foreign Minister] Akol said the AU was a peace monitoring force and Sudan did not need the military power of the United States in Darfur.
"What would they do other than what the African forces can do?" he said. "We are not looking for a force who is going to fight," he added.
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Responses from bloggers
Note comment at this blog entry from unknown author of a new blog Genocide au Darfour, saying:
"The commander in charge of the massacres in Darfur is called MAHAMAT NOUR ABDELKRIM.- - -
The "captain" Mahamat Nour, ex-officer of the chadian army, has commanded the Jandjawids with the sudanese logistic. He has been the principal planner of the genocide in Darfur. Thanks to his chadian nationality, he was used as an alibi by the Sudanese government."
From the UK, Mick Hartley blogs a must-read executive summary of PHR Report on Darfur.