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African Union Affirms Support for UN Peacekeepers in Darfur, Announces Sanctions


The African Union's Peace and Security Council has affirmed its continuing support for the deployment of United Nations peacekeepers in Sudan's violence-plagued Darfur region.

In a communiqué issued in Banjul, The Gambia, ahead of Saturday's AU summit, the council said it is targeting September 30 for the U.N. to take over the African Union's peacekeeping mission in Darfur.

The Council also announced it would impose travel bans and freeze the assets of people undermining or obstructing the Darfur Peace Agreement of May 5, or violating its ceasefire.

Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir has repeatedly refused to allow U.N. peacekeepers into the country.

Mr. Bashir and U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan are expected to discuss the situation at the African Union summit taking place in The Gambia Saturday and Sunday.

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