Aug 17 2006 UN News Centre report
says Sudan may be gearing up for major offensive in Darfur, UN peacekeeping official warns:
The Sudanese Government seems to be determined to pursue a major military offensive in strife-torn Darfur, building up its armed forces in the region as the situation there deteriorates, the Security Council heard today.
In a closed-door briefing, Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Hedi Annabi also warned the Council that Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir has reiterated his opposition to a United Nations peacekeeping force in Darfur and vowed that the Sudanese armed forces would fight any UN force dispatched to the region.
UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters in New York that Mr Annabi urged the Council to consider re-engaging Khartoum directly for a final discussion on the question of whether it would agree to a UN peacekeeping operation in Darfur.
The President of the Security Council, Ambassador Nana Effah-Apenteng, told reporters following the meeting that a draft resolution had been introduced on Sudan. "We are looking at the possibility of bringing all the major players to a meeting here, the League of Arab States, the OIC (Organization of the Islamic Conference), the African Union and a representative of the Sudanese Government," he said, adding that the first two had already accepted.