Sudan PM: UN troops are not welcome

Sudan's president has said his country would never allow UN peacekeepers into Darfur, and claimed the 'West' wanted to dismember his country in order to help Israel.

    Bashir: Sudanese institutions have not collapsed

    "It is very clear there is a plan to redraw the region especially after the invasion of Iraq,” Omar Hassan al-Bashir, Sudan's president, said on the sidelines of a UN General Assembly session.

    "The main purpose [of this plan] is the security of Israel. Any state in the region should be weakened, dismembered in order to protect the Israelis, to guarantee the Israeli security."

    Bashir said he supported a continued presence of an African Union force in Darfur, which wants the United Nations to take over its operation of 7,000 soldiers and monitors.

     

    But Bashir said that while his government welcomed non-African advisers and soldier who provided logistical support for the AU force, he rejected the deployment of troops from outside Africa, even if under AU control as UN officials had suggested earlier.

     

    Sudan has previously rejected a UN security council resolution adopted on August 31, authorising up to 22,500 UN troops and police to replace the cash-strapped and ill-equipped AU troops.

     

    Bashir said: "We want the African Union to remain in Darfur until peace is re-established in Sudan."

     

    Call for UN

     

    Other African politicians - including Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, the Liberian president - told the UN general assembly that the UN should consider intervening in Sudan without the consent of Khartoum.

     

    Johnson-Sirleaf called on the Security Council to act to restore "peace, security and stability" to Darfur.

     

    Bashir noted that the UN resolution also called for help to train police and an independent judiciary, which only help enforce suspicion of the council's motives.

     

    "We are a state, we have our institutions, our institutions have not collapsed," Bashir said.

    SOURCE: Reuters


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