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Hybrid force to evacuate non-essential staff from Sudan.

July 14, 2008 (EL FASHER) — The joint African Union -- UN peacekeeping mission in Darfur (UNAMID) announced Monday the evacuation of the non-essential personnel but continue to operate in the troubled region of Darfur.

General Martin Luther Agwai(UNAMID)

The announcement is made in the day where the International Criminal Court Prosecutor asked for an arrest warrant against the Sudanese president for genocide, crimes against the humanity and war crimes committed in Darfur. The joint peacekeeping force will "maintain its operations in the region and continue implementing its mandate as non-essential staff prepared to relocate due to the recent deteriorating security situation across Darfur," UNAMID said in a statement. General Martin Luther Agwai, UNAMID Force Commander, also said that force protection levels and patrolling would remain the same under the move to security level Phase IV. "We will continue to conduct patrols and security, as well as protect UN personnel and UN facilities on the ground. In addition, we will continue to assist the humanitarian organizations to do their job of rendering humanitarian services to the people in Darfur;" Agwai said. The implementation of security level Phase IV is a formal UN process which will involve the temporary relocation of non-essential UNAMID staff in coming days. Critical personnel engaged in all security and humanitarian operations will remain working at UNAMID headquarters in El Fasher, the Sector offices in El Geneina and Nyala and in other mission locations across Darfur. On 8 July, seven UNAMID peacekeepers were killed and 22 injured, seven critically, in a well-organised attack by heavily armed militia in Um Hakibah, North Darfur. General Agwai said the mission had been assessing recent security incidents and attacks against peacekeepers, including a series of car-jackings and the attack at Um Hakibah, the worst in UNAMID's six-month history. (ST)

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Publication:Sudan Tribune (Sudan)
Date:Jul 16, 2008
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