Negotiators from the Arab League are not making any appreciable progress in their talks with the President of Sudan. The government continues to refuse any UN peacekeepers. Meanwhile, Sudanese forces are crossing into neighboring Chad to attack Darfur rebel forces.
The Arab League diplomats said Sudan's president rejected the initial proposal — as he has all suggestions of a U.N.-affiliated contingent, regardless of the makeup — but promised to suggest an alternative soon, in a sign that the Arab effort might show more promise than Western attempts to stop the humanitarian crisis.
"The situation is deteriorating and needs intervention," said Hesham Youssef, a top aide to the league's secretary-general, Amr Moussa.
But Youssef said the Arab negotiators believed the world community and the United States should also be flexible.
"The Americans should realize that there should be a compromise," he said.
The new push could be a significant step in the stalled effort to reach a compromise over Sudan's rejection of an August Security Council resolution that would let theto take control of and significantly expand a peacekeeping force in the western Darfur region, run so far by the African Union.
The two sides are still far apart, however. And it was unclear how much leverage the Arab countries — close neighbors and supporters of Sudan's Arab-dominated regime — have or how strongly they intended to press.
At least 200,000 people have died and some 2 million have been displaced since the start of a 2003 revolt by rebels from Darfur's ethnic African population. The Sudanese government is alleged to have responded by unleashing militias known as the janjaweed against villagers.
Fears the tensions could spread were highlighted this weekend when Sudanese soldiers crossed the border into eastern Chad to fight a group of Darfur rebels, leaving more than 300 people injured, an aid worker said Sunday, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not allowed to divulge information to the media.
The new killing fields for this generation. The West just dithers and our internal politics flap about on tiny hinges like Mark Foley and his proclivity for phone sex. Yeah, we're serious people, we are. This is one of the shames that the left are giving to the world. Another genocide accomplished while they speak truthiness to power and hamstring any meaningful response to the murderous thugs who conduct these atrocities.