Darfur: New report accuses Sudanese government of obstructing peacekeeper deployment

Amnesty International has today called on the government of Sudan to end the obstruction to the speedy deployment of the United Nations African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID), the hybrid UN/AU force due to take over from the African Union Mission in Sudan (AMIS) by the end of December 2007.

In a new report also published today - ‘Obstruction and Delay: Peacekeepers needed in Darfur now’- Amnesty International highlights the key obstructions and delays to the deployment of the UN peacekeeping force by the Sudanese government, as well as the international community's failure to offer UNAMID urgently-needed equipment, such as military helicopters.

Amnesty International Africa Programme Director Erwin van der Borght said:

"The prevailing insecurity in parts of Darfur is unacceptable. UNAMID is facing the same types of barriers from the government of Sudan that so weakened the African Mission in Sudan peacekeeping force.

"The government of Sudan must accept the AU-UN agreement regarding the composition of the force, allow it to be properly resourced to be able to fulfil its mandate, including with sufficient arms and means of land and air transport, ensure that there are no restrictions on UNAMID’s freedom of movement, and make land immediately available for the establishment of UNAMID bases."

Amnesty International is warning that in the absence of an effective international peacekeeping force, human rights violations continue to be perpetrated against civilians in Darfur with impunity.

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