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UN chief in Darfur to press for an end to the conflict

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UN chief in Darfur to press for an end to the conflict


The UN Secretary General has arrived in Sudan to lay the groundwork for a possible solution to the violence in the western province of Darfur. Ban Ki Moon has said resolving the conflict is one of his top priorities. He is due to hold talks with the Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and also travel to neighbouring Chad and Libya, whose leader, Muammar Gadhaffi, has played a role in bringing the many rebel groups to peace negotiations.

Violence flared in Darfur when rebels took up arms against the Sudanese government four and a half years ago. The UN estimates 200 000 have died and millions have been displaced. Ban Ki-Moon last week outlined a three-point approach involving the deployment of 26 000 UN and African Union peacekeepers, encouraging peace talks and aid.

The trip comes amid a resurgence in violence and against a backdrop of what UN officials say is worsening malnutrition. Ban Ki Moon is due to visit a refugee camp later today, to witness for himself the scale of the humanitarian disaster.

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