Sudan: UN/AU Coordination Group gives pass mark to UNAMID

New York, US (PANA) - A tripartite coordination group of the UN and the African Union (AU) said the joint UN/AU Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) had made progress and that cooperation and coordination with the Sudanese government had improved, as well as security conditions on the ground.

A UN statement, made available to PANA in New York on Monday, said the Tripartite
Coordination Mechanism, which met at the UN headquarters at the weekend commended
UNAMID for its efforts, so far, to bring lasting peace and security to the Sudanese region.

It also encouraged the mission to support the peace process in Darfur by engaging other groups and preparing for internal dialogue and the Darfur political process.

"The mechanism brings together senior representatives from the AU, the UN and the Sudanese government to reinforce cooperation in support of UNAMID's mandate of protecting civilians in Darfur," it stated.

The statement also disclosed that "participants proposed that UNAMID shifts its focus from troop deployment to the effective use of its resources for the full implementation of its mandate.

"On the security situation, UNAMID noted that inter-ethnic violence had declined in recent months and that the number of overall deaths in Darfur fell from 2,321 in 2010 to 724 so far this year.

"The number of incidents of car jacking also fell due to mitigation measures undertaken by UNAMID and the Sudanese government," the statement noted.

It, however, said that the participants expressed concern over attacks on peacekeepers and humanitarian personnel in Darfur, including the abduction of an international aid worker who is still in captivity.

They also took note of the Sudanese government's commitment to securing the safe release of the hostage and bringing the perpetrators to justice.

Other issues discussed included access and freedom of movement, the conference on water resources in June and the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur.

The statement further said that participants took note of increased UNAMID patrols and an access restriction rate of less than one per cent and UNAMID's Operation Spring Basket, which had contributed to the expansion of humanitarian access to previously inaccessible parts of Jebel Marra and elsewhere in Darfur.

They welcomed efforts to resolve movement restrictions through a sub-committee of UNAMID, local authorities and government security entities.

Participants at the meeting included Rahamtalla Mohamed Osman, the Under Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Sudanese government; Ramtane Lamamra, AU
Commissioner for Peace and Security; Susan Malcorra, UN Under Secretary-General Field Support; Edmond Mulet, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, and Professor Ibrahim Gambari, the UN/AU Joint Special Representative and head of UNAMID.

The participants agreed to meet again in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, in January 2012, when they will focus attention on strategic issues, including how better to utilize the mission's resources, the road map for the Darfur peace process and a forthcoming review of uniformed personnel requirements for UNAMID.
-0- PANA AA/BOS 26Sept2011

26 september 2011 15:03:39

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