UK and France seek Darfur force

French president and British prime minister to press UN for deployment.

    UN  resolution would allow 26, 000
    troops and police for Darfur

    "We will be prepared to contribute substantial sums in economic support as soon as a ceasefire makes it possible."

    "We believe that working together first of all we can secure a UN resolution that will bring an African Union and UN force into the area and we hope that resolution will pass quickly.

    UN resolution

    The Security Council is considering a five-page draft resolution sponsored by Britain, France and Ghana that Sudan and several council members say contains too many references to humanitarian and other issues, including a threat of "further measures" if any of the parties "fail to fulfil their commitments or co-operate fully".

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    Without the resolution, which would authorise up to 26,000 troops and police from the African Union and United Nations, UN member states will not commit personnel to Sudan's violent Darfur region.

    Brown and Sarkozy said they were prepared to go to Darfur after the resolution was passed to speak to the people involved and to monitor progress in the peace process.

    Sarkozy said: "We will be submitting and defending the same draft resolution before the UN and we will ask our foreign ministers to go there with the same message - this can no longer go on.

    "There is urgency and people are dying, people are suffering and this has to stop. We would even be prepared, were the resolution passed, to go to Darfur and to Chad together ourselves."

    The two countries also agreed to set up a joint committee, to meet quarterly to share information on security and counter-terrorism.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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