Sudan

Sudan's acceptance of hybrid operation a significant step: USG Guehenno

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The top UN peacekeeping official briefed the Security Council Wednesday on Sudan's acceptance of a UN-African Union hybrid peacekeeping force.

Jean-Marie Guehenno later told reporters he explained to the council that this was a significant step forward:

"We are going to make every effort to preserve the African character of the mission. That's the agreement. We think we will be able to do that because we have offers from African countries. There are some capacities where we may have to look beyond Africa and I was pleased to se in the discussions with the delegation of the government of Sudan that was accepted. That has been the understanding since the beginning that we will look as a priority to African forces."

Mr. Guehenno says if the capacity is not available from an African country, the UN will look elsewhere because the key goal remains helping the people of Darfur and having a force deployed as quickly as possible with the right capacities.