Criminal elements cause insecurity in Darfur

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Inaugural meeting in Khartoum of the Joint Commission of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD).

Despite a decline in fighting between government and rebel forces in the Darfur region of Sudan, criminals continue to create insecurity, according to the head of the African Union-UN mission in Darfur, Ibrahim Gambari.

Mr. Gambari spoke on Sunday at the start of the first meeting of a joint commission to ensure effective implementation of an agreement to advance the peace process in Darfur.

The accord was signed in Doha, Qatar in May this year by the Sudanese government and one of the rebel groups in Darfur, the Liberation and Justice Movement to end the crisis in Darfur.

A civil war which broke out in Darfur in 2003 between armed rebel groups and Sudanese government forces and allied militias claimed the lives of thousands of Darfuris and displaced nearly two million others.

Mr. Gambari said the conflict has deescalated.

"The number of armed clashes between the government and the armed movements, including even the non-signatory parties has declined. Of course, some security challenges remain. We have criminalities, carjacking, attacks on peacekeepers, which is a war crime and leading to the death of some of our peacekeepers and, of course, some international personnel being held hostage."

(Duration: 23")

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