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Damned if they do, damned if they don’t


UNAMIDincampDarfur’s joint U.N.-African Union peacekeepers face a dilemma in Darfur which could shape the future of the world’s largest U.N.-funded force.

After violence left five people dead in the highly volatile Kalma Camp, six refugees sought sanctuary in the UNAMID force’s police base there. They are thought to be rebel sympathisers and the government accuses them of instigating the camp clashes, demanding that UNAMID hand them over.

Kalma, just outside Darfur’s largest town Nyala, has long been a problem for the Khartoum government, whose offices in the camp were burned down by angry refugees. Rebel supporters in the camp have obtained arms and there have been clashes with government police in the area.

Now if the six are responsible for the violence, which was between refugees who support rebel leader Abdel Wahed Mohamed el-Nur and those who took part in peace talks which Nur rejects, then it is Sudan’s right to try them in a court of law.