October 8, 2019 (KHARTOUM) – United Nations and African Unions officials are in Khartoum for talks with the Sudanese officials on the future of Darfur peacekeeping mission which is planned to withdraw by June 2020.
Jean-Pierre Lacroix, the head of the Department for Peace Operations and the African Union’s Commissioner for Peace and Security, Smail Chergui, arrived on Monday to take part in a tripartite meeting to discuss the future of the UN- AU Mission in Darfur on Tuesday.
“Arrived in Khartoum with AU Chergui in a joint UN-African Union visit to review progress in the drawdown of UNAMID with new Sudanese authorities. Crucial to creating conditions for responsible exit from Darfur and consolidate peace through the predictable engagement of UN Sudan and UN Peacebuilding,” Lacroix said in a tweet released on Monday.
The two officials will meet Sudanese transitional authorities to discuss the ongoing preparation for peace talks with Darfur armed groups scheduled to begin in Juba on 14 October, said a statement by the UN spokesperson on Monday evening.
Last June, the Security Council decided to pause the UN-African Union Mission in Darfur’s (UNAMID) drawdown, as the country dealt with a political crisis after the collapse of the al-Bashir regime.
The 15 member body extended the mandate of the UNAMID, until Oct. 31, and asked the U.N. and AU to make recommendations by Sept. 30 on what the council should do about continuing the withdrawal.