Sudan threatens to end Darfur peacekeeping mission

Last Updated: Wednesday, August 3, 2011 - 10:14

Khartoum: Sudan`s foreign minister has
said that any attempt to "impose new commitments" on the UN
peacekeeping force in Darfur, under its new mandate, would
force the government to terminate the mission.

"Any attempt to impose new commitments different to
those already agreed (for the peacekeeping mission in
Darfur)... will free the Sudanese government from its
commitment to accepting the mission and its deployment," Ali
Ahmed Karti said yesterday in a statement obtained by agency.
"Such a resolution will force the government to reject
the mission and terminate its duty," he added.

His comments came shortly after the foreign ministry,
in a separate statement, strongly criticised a UN Security
Council resolution extending the mandate of the hybrid
UN-African Union peacekeeping force in Sudan`s war-torn Darfur
region (UNAMID) for one year.

The initial statement said the UN resolution, passed
on Friday, was full of "negative and obsolete references" that
did not reflect the reality on the ground.

As well as extending UNAMID`s mandate, the resolution
expressed "deep concern at the deteriorating security
situation in some parts of Darfur, including... aerial
bombardment by the government of Sudan."
It also called on all parties to the conflict to
comply with their obligations under international humanitarian
law.

Sudan`s foreign ministry accused the Security Council
of distorting the situation in Darfur and highlighting
information that, it said, did not imply close cooperation
between the government and the peacekeeping mission.

UNAMID, which was established in 2007, is the largest
UN peacekeeping operation in the world with around 23,000
uniformed personnel and an annual budget, up to June 30, of
more than USD 1.8 billion.

The separate UN peacekeeping mission in Sudan (UNMIS),
deployed after the 2005 peace accord between north and south,
had to withdraw from the north last month, following the
government`s refusal to allow a temporary renewal of its
mandate despite concerted international pressure to do so.

At least 300,000 people have been killed and 1.9
million people have fled their homes since the Darfur conflict
erupted in 2003 between non-Arab rebels and the Arab-dominated
Khartoum regime, the United Nations says.

PTI



First Published: Wednesday, August 3, 2011 - 10:14

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