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U.N. Chief to Join Powell in Sudan to Try to Halt Massacres

Secretary General Kofi Annan said Friday that he would meet Secretary of State Colin L. Powell in Sudan next week in an effort to compel the Sudanese government to end the “catastrophe” facing its people. “The people of Darfur are suffering a catastrophe — terrible crimes have been committed against them,” Mr. Annan said, referring to the area of the country where pro-government Arab militias have been evicting and killing black Muslims in a campaign that he said “is bordering on ethnic cleansing.” He said that he and Mr. Powell would be “collectively putting pressure” on Sudan to ease restrictions and halt attacks on aid workers trying to get to tens of thousands of people needing food and water, and to disband the so-called Janjaweed militias, which are financed and equipped by the government. In announcing Mr. Powell’s plans to go to Darfur, Richard A. Boucher, the State Department spokesman, said Thursday that the United States had not seen any evidence that the Sudanese president, Omar Hassan Ahmed al-Bashir, was following up his pledge earlier this week to disarm the militias. Full Story

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