The joint African Union-United Nations peacekeeping mission in the war-torn Darfur region of Sudan got a boost with the arrival of 156 military personnel from Pakistan, including 29 doctors and paramedics, bringing advanced medical expertise and equipment as well as logistics and administrative experts.
The mission, known as UNAMID, reported today that the contingent from the Pakistani Level-III Hospital arrived in South Darfur over the weekend and has already broken ground on construction of the hospital there, which will be operating soon.
The medical staff will perform major operations and provide advanced medical treatment to civilians in Darfur, where an estimated 300,000 people have been killed and another 2.7 million displaced from their homes during five years of fighting between Government forces, allied militiamen, know as the Janjaweed, and rebel groups.
Last year, the Security Council authorized the joint peacekeeping force of about 26,000 uniformed personnel. Some 12,240 have been deployed so far, and senior UN officials have repeatedly called on countries to supply the remaining troops and equipment needed.