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Sudan ''did not'' give ok over international force for Darfur - top official
POL-SUDAN-DARFUR
Sudan 'did not' give ok over international force for Darfur - top official

CAIRO, Nov 18 (KUNA) -- Sudan 'did not' give approval over deployment of an international force in Darfur; what was actually agreed to in the Addis Ababa meetings was to reinforce African Union troops already in the troubled region, Sudanese presidential advisor Majdhub Al-Khalifah stated Saturday.

The official told Sawt Al-Arab (Voice of Arabia) radio, over the phone from Khartoum, that he is hopeful the Addis Ababa meetings would break the current stalemate between Sudan and the international community. He added the meetings had also addressed Security Council resolution 1706.

Security Council resolution 1706 in August called for the deployment of a multi-dimensional UN presence to Sudan's neighboring states Chad and the Central African Republic.

The media had yesterday reported contradictory statements by the UN and Sudan over international forces for Darfur. While UN Secretary General Kofi Annan was quoted saying Sudan agreed 'in principle' over an international presence in Darfur, the Sudanese Foreign Minister Lam Akol stressed there was no agreement on deployment of international forces to serve alongside African forces in the region.

The minister pointed out the Addis Ababa agreement does not state such thing and there should not be any talk of mixed un-African Union force. What was discussed, he said, was an African force that would be supported by the UN.

The top official also said his country is willing to talk logistic and financial UN support for the African Union mission. There is cooperation already between the two organizations on issues including technical support for efforts at mine-clearing, transportation, and logistics and supplies, he remarked.(end) rg.

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