AU extends Darfur peacekeeping role

The African Union on Sunday agreed to extend its peacekeeping role in the Darfur region of Sudan by three months until the end of 2006.

    AU peackeepers will extend their stay in Darfur

    The under equipped AU force of 7,000 had been due to handover to the UN at the end of September.

    Sudan, however, has so far refused to allow UN peackeepers into the country.

    Kofi Annan, the UN secretary-general, asked the AU to extend its mission during their weekend conference in the Gambia capital Banjul.

    "On the request of the secretary-general, the African Union will continue to fulfil its mission until the end of the year," said Sassou Nguesso, the president of the Congo Republic, who holds the rotating AU presidency.

    Annan met the Sudanese president, Omar Hassan al-Bashir, on the fringes of the summit but failed to persuade him to allow UN troops into Darfur

    Annan described the crisis there as "one of the worst nightmares in recent history".

    In 2003, the Darfur rebel groups began their campaign in western region of Darfur, prompting an heavy-handed crackdown by the Khartoum government and its proxy militia -  the Janjaweed.

    The conflict has left about 300,000 people dead and  2.4 million homeless, with hundreds of thousands crossing the border into eastern Chad.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Death from above: Every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Death from above: Every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Since March 2015, Saudi Arabia and a coalition of Arab states have launched more than 19,278 air raids across Yemen.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    How different voting systems work around the world

    How different voting systems work around the world

    Nearly two billion voters in 52 countries around the world will head to the polls this year to elect their leaders.