Although there has been a lot more Darfur news coverage, you still have to make an effort and look for it. The mainstream media outlets barely mention it. One happening they did cover, though, was the United Nations resolution to send in 26,000 troops in to the region. The meaning of that was not really explored. The resolution was watered down, so that China and others would not object to it. It has no tough sanctions if the Government of Sudan (GoS) does not cooperate. It does not have right mandate either, with the troops going in to “observe peace” but not to protect when necessary. Even in its weak state, the resolution has to go beyond just being a piece of paper. There have been preparations by nations that are offering to send troops, but the GoS is now playing the game it has become an expert at playing. They refuse to accept non-African troops and find all kinds of objections, so that the actual deployment always falls always somewhere in the indeterminate future. Reuters covers Darfur extensively. While Connie, Yuen-Lin, and I were out in Chad, we met one of their reporters. Here below, you can read a piece from another of their reporters, with great information and analysis by Ex-UN official Jan Egeland. –Gabriel
For complete article, go here: http://africa.reuters.com/top/news/usnBAN854984.html
Ex-U.N aid official says Darfur force must fight
Fri 28 Sep 2007, 14:16 GMT
By Peter Apps
“There is no peace to keep and that is why the mandate has to be to build peace locally and robustly defend civilians,” Egeland told Reuters in the Oslo headquarters of the foreign policy think tank he now heads.
“That means that, when the humanitarians or the refugees themselves say they are threatened, the force has to deploy protectively and defend. And fight, if necessary.”
The former U.N. undersecretary-general, who still advises U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon on peace building, said simply distributing aid in Darfur had saved hundreds of thousands of lives, but was not enough.
“We have let the situation disintegrate,” he said. “For me, it is the safe areas of Bosnia all over again. We give people food and blankets but then we say they can be massacred at night.”