The US government announced that it will continue to prepare to
implement political and economic sanctions on Sudan. The US said the sanctions
"package" is the threat that forced Sudan to agree to the UN's "three phase"
28, 2006: The first uniformed contingent of UN observer troops arrived in
Sudan's Darfur region. Thirteen military officers and 12 police officers
deployed in El Fasher (North Darfur) to help the AU peacekeeping force. Another
13 UN uniformed personnel were expected to deploy elsewhere in Darfur.
27, 2006: The Sudan government ever so slightly shifted its political stance
regarding UN troops involvement in Darfur. Facing a January1, 2007 deadline
(after which Sudan would face economic and political sanctions), the Sudan
government agreed to allow 38 UN observers to deploy in Darfur. These observers
will deploy immediately to Darfur. The UN contingent will grow to 105 troops
and policemen sometime in January 2007. However, the Sudanese agreement doesn't
appear to allow for a UN-African Union peacekeeping force. However, what Sudan
has agreed to doesn't look all that different from "phase one" of the UN's
"three phase" peacekeeping plan. However, a Sudan government spokesman said
that Sudan had agreed to a "three phases of support" by the UN for the AU
peacekeeping force. Expect further diplomatic wrangling as the UN observer
26, 2006: China announced that it would rotate in new troops to replace its
435-soldier peacekeeping contingent in south Sudan. The Chinese force includes
logistics specialists, medical teams, and engineers.
24, 2006: The rebel National Resistance Front (NRF) claimed that its forces had
fought with Sudan government troops and janjaweed militiamen in the town of
Kutum (North Darfur). The rebel statement said that the government troops and
militia attacked a village (near Kutum) and killed seven people The NRF force
then drove the attackers away. A Sudan government military spokesman later
claimed that the NRF had launched an attack near Kutum and four government
soldiers were killed. There are very few journalists in the area and
communications throughout Darfur are iffy. The claims and counter-claims by
belligerents are typical. The one thing everyone agrees upon is that Kutum has
been the scene of fighting since the middle of December.