UN Mission Reintegrating Ex-Soldiers in Darfur

Posted July 5th, 2011 at 2:40 am (UTC-5)
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The United Nations Mission in Sudan's Darfur region says it has begun a campaign to disarm and reintegrate more than 400 ex-fighters from both sides of the long-running conflict between rebels and the government.

The U.N. said it began the campaign Monday in El Fasher in North Darfur, with fighters from both the Sudanese Armed Forces and several rebel movements.

Participants will undergo a security screening, medical exam and psychological assessment. The program also includes workshops on reintegrating into society, job training and a financial allowance to help the ex-fighters ease back into the community.

The campaign in North Darfur comes two months after the mission carried out a similar effort in South Darfur, where it worked to reintegrate more than 1,100 ex-soldiers.

Rebels in Darfur took up arms against the government in 2003, accusing Khartoum of neglecting their region.

Fighting has continued for more than eight years with little progress in peace talks between Sudan's government and rebel groups.

The United Nations says more than 300,000 people have been killed in the Darfur conflict, and 2.7 million others have been displaced. Sudan's government puts the death toll at 10,000.