Sudan has agreed to allow more troops into the Darfur region. Hopefully, a larger force can help to some peace.
The plan will more than double to between 17,000 and 19,000 the number of AU troops struggling to protect civilians from the pro-government Janjaweed militia.
A joint statement by the AU, UN and Sudanese regime, released in Addis Ababa last night, said Khartoum had “accepted the joint proposals of the hybrid operation” after obtaining explanations and clarifications from the two bodies.
The two-day talks in the Ethiopian capital had reached an impasse because of Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir’s insistence that he wanted all the peacekeepers to come from Africa.
The UN and the AU had pledged to seek African troops first, but say they will use non-African troops if necessary.
The UN and AU recently asked Sudan to approve troops from two African countries and two non-African countries to strengthen the beleaguered 7000-strong AU force already in Darfur. This deployment is part of a heavy support package that will pave the way for the much larger UN-AU hybrid force.