Middle East

UNAMID in Sudan's Darfur has 'nothing to hide'

UNAMID Joint Special Representative, Mohammad Ibn Chambas speaking during a press conference on the situation in Darfur at the UNDP headquarters in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum August 11, 2014. (AFP Photo/UNAMID/Albert Gonzalez Farran)

KHARTOUM: The U.N.-African Union Mission in Darfur head insisted Monday that UNAMID has nothing to hide, ahead of a U.N. probe into allegations it covered up crimes in the Sudanese region.

Mohammad Ibn Chambas said a committee from U.N. headquarters in New York is due in Sudan as early as next week to examine the allegations raised by Aicha al-basri, who resigned last year as spokeswoman for UNAMID, one of the world's largest peacekeeping operations.

Her accusations against UNAMID were set out most notably in the American magazine Foreign Policy earlier this year.

"UNAMID has nothing to hide from the committee," Chambas told a press conference in the Sudanese capital Khartoum.

He had just returned from New York where he briefed U.N. Security Council members on the overall situation in Darfur and met with the committee.

The U.N. in July said it had begun an internal investigation after the International Criminal Court's chief prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, asked for a probe following Basri's accusations.

Bensouda said UNAMID had allegedly "been subject to manipulation," reportedly "with the intentional effect of covering up crimes committed against civilians and peacekeepers."

UNAMID is tasked with protecting civilians and securing humanitarian aid in the western region where more than two million people have been displaced by 11 years of conflict.

Chambas said UNAMID would cooperate with the U.N. committee, and that the mission's information flow was being handled "according to U.N. standards."





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