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Sudan agrees to UN mission in Darfur

Sudan has agreed to allow UN and African Union team to assess requirements for possible deployment peacekeepers in Darfur.

india Updated: May 26, 2006 14:10 IST

Faced with international pressure, Sudan has agreed to allow a joint United Nations and African Union team to assess requirements for possible deployment of world body's peacekeepers in conflict-ridden Darfur.

However, Khartoum has yet to agree to the deployment of a United Nations force to replace the ill-funded and ill-equipped 7000-strong African Union (AU) monitoring force, which has not be able to make any impact in region with the Sudanese forces and government supported militias as also rebel groups remaining unimpressed.

The assessment mission, comprising high ranking officials from the UN and AU, will also assess the immediate needs for the African Union force to make it more effective as the deployment of the UN peacekeepers could take several months.

But the report of the assessment team would enable the world body to formulate plans and seek resources, including military and equipment, from the member States for the mission to Darfur where hundreds of thousands have been killed and two million people uprooted from their homes in the three-year-old conflict.

So far, Sudan has maintained that it would be agreeable to only peacekeepers from African countries but diplomats said it could change as the world body increases the pressure.

First Published: May 26, 2006 14:10 IST