Indonesia to Send Police Team to Darfur

Indonesia to Send Police Team to Darfur

JAKARTA ~ Indonesia is to contribute 140 police to a joint UN-African Union peacekeeping force in Sudan’s war-torn Darfur region, the national police spokesman said.

The joint force, known as UNAMID, is tasked with protecting the civilian population of a region the size of France that has been mired in civil strife between ethnic minority rebels and the Khartoum government since 2003.

So far, only around 9,000 of a planned 26,000 members are actually on the ground.

“We will send a contingent of 140 chosen personnel on May 25. They will join the UN peacekeeping force for six months,” Abubakar Nataprawira told a press conference here.

The United Nations says at least 200,000 people have died in Darfur and two million more have been driven from their homes since February 2003. Sudan’s government insists the figures are exaggerated.

The UN Security Council passed a resolution mandating a 26,000-strong force for Darfur last July.

And the United States recently pressed the United Nations to ensure that 3,600 more international peacekeepers are deployed in the region by June.

Indonesia already has about 850 troops serving with the UN peacekeeping force in Lebanon.

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