Skip to main content

Sudan: Armed Conflict

Volume 458: debated on Monday 12 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations her Department has made to the United Nations on resolving the conflict in Sudan; and what estimate she has made of the impact this conflict has had on numbers of people seeking asylum from that country within the United Kingdom. (125845)

The UK has played a leading role in negotiating all the UN Security Council Resolutions (UNSCR) on Darfur.

Ministers and officials are in constant contact with the UN Secretariat about Darfur. My noble Friend the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Lord Triesman of Tottenham, visited New York on 21 February to press the UN for more rapid action on deployment of the African Union/UN hybrid force and for urgent action on the political process.

We believe that the next step is for the UN Security Council to impose tougher measures on the Government of Sudan and rebel groups in view of their failure to co-operate with the UN. We will be pressing the council for the extension of the existing arms embargo and for sanctions on more individuals in accordance with UNSCR 1591 (2005).

The numbers of Sudanese asylum applications received in the UK between 2004 and 2006 have dropped. The total number of applications, excluding dependants, at the height of the Darfur conflict in 2004 was 1,305; in 2005 the figure fell to 885; and in 2006 to 675. The 2005 and 2006 figures are provisional.