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S. African To Head Cop Component Of Hybrid Force


South African chosen to head police component of hybrid UN-AU force in Darfur

An assistant police commissioner from South Africa has been appointed to head the police component of the hybrid United Nations-African Union peacekeeping operation (UNAMID) being deployed to the war-torn Darfur region of Sudan early next year.

Michael J. Fryer was selected by the Chairperson of the AU Commission, in consultation with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, to become UNAMID's Police Commissioner, the AU said today in a press release issued in Addis Ababa.

Commissioner Fryer will have responsibility for implementing all police aspects of the mandate of UNAMID, which is aiming to quell the violence and humanitarian suffering that has engulfed Darfur since 2003.

Before this appointment, he headed the South African police force's Specialized Operation Division since September 2004 and, prior to that he was Commander of the South African Special Task Force.

More than 200,000 people have been killed and at least 2.2 million others forced to flee their homes because of continued fighting between rebels, Government forces and allied militia known as the Janjaweed.

When fully deployed UNAMID is expected to have nearly 20,000 military personnel and more than 6,000 police officers and will become the largest UN peacekeeping operation.

ENDS

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