Friday, August 25, 2006

Islamist leaders say no to UN force in Darfur.

Sudan: The only way to solve this is just bomb a buffer out between Darfur and the rest of the country.

KHARTOUM (Reuters) - Sudanese Islamist leaders say they will take up arms against United Nations peacekeepers if they deploy to Darfur, and some have warned they will also fight the Khartoum government if it agrees to the force. The threats conjure up a disturbing image of more bloodshed in the western Darfur region, where tens of thousands of people have been killed in more than three years of conflict, described as "genocide" by the United States. Despite Sudan's objections, the United States and Britain have introduced a Security Council resolution that would deploy up to 17,000 troops and 3,000 police in Darfur, where an overstretched African Union force is monitoring a shaky truce. Leaders of Al Qaeda have called on Muslims to fight any U.N. force in Darfur and while the diplomatic wrangling continues, Khartoum's many Islamic groups have delivered a clear message. "We categorically refuse U.N. troops in Darfur," said Abdel Wahhab Mohamed Ali Ahmed, head of the Sudanese higher council for the coordination of Islamic groups, formed last year. "And if they come we will fight them until they leave." The council is composed of representatives from Sudan's main Islamist movements, including Ansar al-Sunna and the Hizb ut-Tahrir group, outlawed in neighbouring Egypt.

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