The UN top official in charge of peacekeeping operations said
Wednesday that the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in
Darfur (UNAMID) is facing great challenges.
The Security Council heard a briefing from Jean-Marie Guehenno,
the Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, on the
outstanding challenges and impediments the United Nations continues
to face in its efforts to deploy UNAMID.
In his briefing, while noting a "modest momentum" created by the
transfer of authority from the African Union mission to UNAMID on
Dec. 31, Guehenno told the Council that war, with cross-border
dimensions, is continuing.
He also reported that, five months after the adoption of
resolution 1769, the United Nations does not yet have guarantees or
agreements from the Sudanese government on basic technical issues
regarding the deployment of UNAMID.
At the same time, the under-secretary-general said, the mission
itself will not have the personnel or assets in place to implement
its mandate for many months, even in the best-case scenario.
He noted that no offers for essential transportation and
aviation assets have been made, including the 24 helicopters.
Guehenno described as "grave" the deteriorating security
situation in Darfur, saying the escalation of violence in West
Darfur presents a fundamental challenge to UNAMID, which is a
peacekeeping force not designed to deploy or function in a war
Reporting on the attack on the UNAMID supply convoy earlier this
week, Guehenno said that after the attack, the area commander for
the Sudanese Armed Forces had confirmed that it was a Sudanese
Armed Forces unit that had fired on the convoy.
(Xinhua News Agency January 10, 2008)