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Sudan: Peacekeeping Operations

Volume 485: debated on Thursday 18 December 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will hold discussions with his US counterpart on the future prospects for a no-fly zone over Sudan; and if he will make a statement. (242557)

My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary has regular discussions with his US counterpart on Sudan. We are working closely with the US to resolve the conflict in Darfur including through support to both the political process and the peacekeeping mission, and pressing all parties to end the conflict and commit to a full ceasefire.

We are not currently proposing a no-fly zone for Darfur. We assess that a no-fly zone would restrict essential humanitarian operations and be a major logistical challenge due to the size of Darfur and the lack of available air assets. The African Union-UN Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) is mandated to monitor military activity, including flights prohibited by UN Security Council Resolution 1591. We continue to press all parties for the rapid and full deployment of UNAMID.