U.N. Security Council Approves Darfur Peacekeeping Force
UNITED NATIONS — "The U.N. Security Council approved a 26,000-strong peacekeeping force for Darfur on Tuesday to try to help end four years of fighting that has killed more than 200,000 people in the conflict-wracked Sudanese region.
The force — the first joint peacekeeping mission by the African Union and the United Nations — will replace the beleaguered 7,000-strong AU force now on the ground in Darfur no later than Dec. 31. The council urged that the AU-U.N. "hybrid" force achieve "full operational capability and force strength as soon as possible thereafter."
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called it a "historic and unprecedented resolution" that will send "a clear and powerful signal" of the U.N.'s commitment to help to the people of Darfur and the surrounding region "and close this tragic chapter in Sudan's history."
Britain's U.N. Ambassador Emyr Jones Parry called it "an unprecedented undertaking in scale, complexity and importance."
There, my friends, goes the neighborhood.