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Last Updated: Saturday, 6 November, 2004, 01:34 GMT
Darfur peace push in new UN text
Members of the rebel Justice and Equality Movement in Darfur, Sudan
Darfur rebels and Khartoum are in African Union-mediated talks
A draft resolution calling for a speedy end to talks on resolving the crisis in Sudan's Darfur region is being examined by UN Security Council members.

The new resolution also calls for a peace agreement over Africa's longest-running civil war, between Sudan's government and rebels in the south.

The resolution is expected to be adopted by the Security Council when it meets in Nairobi later this month.

The UN chief envoy to Darfur has warned the area could collapse in anarchy.

Jan Pronk said violence was increasing in the area, and called for a fast deployment of the newly-expanded African Union peacekeeping mission.

"If this negative trend is not reversed it is a recipe for disaster," he told the Security Council.

The BBC's Susannah Price in New York says the new draft resolution looks more towards promises of help for Sudan, rather than threats of punishment.

Stalled talks

Aside from Darfur, it backs efforts to end the war between Khartoum and the southern rebels. The two sides have signed important deals, clearing the way for a full treaty possibly by the end of the year.

The resolution says once a north-south peace deal is signed, the UN will send in a peacekeeping operation.

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It also encourages UN agencies, the EU and others to provide assistance for the reconstruction of Sudan and to organise a donors conference when there is an agreement.

However, peace talks between the Sudanese government and rebels in the western Darfur region stalled on Friday over the question of creating a no-fly zone over the area.

Nigeria's President Olusegun Obasanjo, who is hosting the talks in Abuja, put forward a compromise, which called for a ceasefire on land and in the air.

The rebel groups agreed to the new wording late on Thursday, but the government rejected it saying it was too one-sided.

The talks, which have gone on for nearly two weeks, are due to start again on Saturday.

Aid agencies evacuating

Some 1.6 million people have fled their homes since the conflict began.

Pro-government Janjaweed militias are accused of driving the region's black Africans from their villages, since two rebel groups began an uprising in February 2003.

Women in northern Darfur, Sudan watch AU peacekeeping troops

The US describes the attacks in Darfur as genocide.

The Security Council has passed two resolutions already, threatening sanctions against Sudan's government if the violence in Darfur continues. But it has had little discernable effect.

Aid agencies in south Darfur have evacuated some areas as clashes between rebels and the government continue.

Earlier this week, the UN criticised the forced removal of a number of refugees from a camps in Darfur. Mr Pronk said it was a "flagrant violation of international humanitarian law".

Khartoum defended the relocation, saying conditions in the camp were not good enough.

The Security Council, is due to meet in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi on 17-18 November, to discuss Darfur.




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