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Sudan rejects Canada's offer of military advisors

5/14/2005 5:59am

OTTAWA, May 13 (Reuters) - Sudan has rejected a Canadian plan to send military advisors to the troubled Darfur region, saying Ottawa had not consulted Khartoum on its plan, the Sudanese embassy said on Friday.
Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin announced on Thursday a C$170 million ($136 million) aid package for Darfur, where thousands of people have been killed and two million displaced in a bloody civil war.

Martin also said Canada would send up to 100 military experts to help a African Union force in the region.

In a press release dated Thursday, the Sudanese embassy complained that Khartoum had not been consulted in advance about the plan.

"(We) would like to affirm that the unwavering position of the Sudanese government ... is categorically rejecting (sic) any deployment of non-African military personnel in the Darfur region. Any logistical and financial support is most welcomed," said the release, which was sent to Reuters on Friday.

"It is to be as well stated that any future efforts or plans on Darfur should be worked out and finalized with the satisfaction and full approval of the Sudanese government."

No one from Martin's office or the Canadian foreign ministry was immediately available for comment.

An African Union force of more than 2,300 soldiers and hundreds of civilian police are deployed in Darfur to monitor a shaky ceasefire agreed to in April of last year between mostly non-Arab rebels and the Arab-dominated government in Khartoum.

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