The United Nations has agreed to replace thousands of Ethiopian forces within the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) with other UN forces, Sudan announced on Wednesday.
The head of the sovereign Transitional Council of Sudan Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan received a call from Jean-Pierre Lacroix, the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations, in which the two sides discussed arrangements to replace Ethiopian forces at Sudan’s request, the Sovereign Council said in a statement >
Al-Burhan promised to remove any obstacles and challenges to the mission.
Lacroix said replacement operations would begin in February and last until March 2022.
Formerly Sudan demanded the replacement of the Ethiopian armed forces within UNISFA after a border dispute with Ethiopia.
UNISFA was founded in 2011 by the UN Security Council to monitor the border with Abyei. It consists mainly of Ethiopian armed forces with around 4,200 soldiers and 50 police officers.
Later the size of the armed forces was increased to 5,326, all of Ethiopian origin.
Sudan – Relations with Ethiopia have been strained by rising tensions, including deadly skirmishes, along the border between the two countries since September 2020.