Sudan: Amnesty International asks foreign office minister to progress peace in Darfur

On the eve of the fourth Global Day of Action for Darfur, Amnesty International has asked the UK Government to apply every effort to securing peace in the region of Darfur.

In a televised interview with Foreign Office Minister Lord Mark Malloch-Brown who recently returned from a visit to Darfur, Amnesty International raised concerns about the ongoing fighting the region and the seeming failure on the part of the Sudanese Government to respect international justice.

Amnesty also drew attention to the continuous breach of the arms embargoes currently placed on the region.

Amnesty International’s Advocacy Officer, Allan Hogarth asked when the deployment of the AU-UN hybrid peacekeeping force – UNAMID (UN-AU Mission in Darfur) would be likely to be implemented.

Lord Malloch-Brown said:
“We do not foresee the deployment of the hybrid peacekeeping force to take place before the end of the year.”

But Lord Malloch-Brown is seeking to ensure that adequate protection will be maintained before the mandate expired through putting in place “elite African troops” which would be resourced with logistical support and adequate training.

Amnesty International also raised concerns that the recent appointment of war crimes suspect Ahmed Haroun to investigate human rights abuses during the conflict was a snub to international justice. Lord Malloch-Brown agreed that the recent appointment was “a cynical step” and only sought to hinder the peace efforts being made.

On the matter of sexual violence against Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and girls which has been regularly used as a weapon of war in the Darfur conflict, Amnesty called on the UK Government to provide training and assistance to ensure that a gender-based approach would be implemented in any peacekeeping plan. Lord Malloch-Brown did not rule this out.

Watch the interview:

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