Sudan

Sudan: Paris brings together the parties to the Darfur crisis

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Bernard Kouchner, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, headed the Ministerial meeting of the enlarged contact group on Darfur, held in Paris on 25 June. The parties' main focus was the concrete application of the agreements that recently came into effect, in particular on the deployment of a hybrid peacekeeping force.

Participants in the meeting, including a Chinese delegation, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the French State Secretary on Human Rights Rama Yade, and Bernard Kouchner dealt with four important aspects of the Darfur crisis:

- Reviving the political process underway, with the elaboration of a joint roadmap, shared by the African Union and the United Nations. The discussions addressed how to enforce the first provisions.

- Taking stock of the humanitarian and security situation: the delegations assessed the advances made in facilitating the humanitarian aid jointly decided upon by Sudan and the UN. They also discussed the prospect of deploying a hybrid peacekeeping force, provided Sudan's approval.

- Establishing a map showing the site requiring reconstruction and assistance from the international community.

- Broaching the repercussions of the crisis at the local level and its implications in Eastern Chad and north-eastern Central Africa.