Foreign Minister Kouchner to travel to Sudan

7th June 2007, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, June 7, 2007 (AFP) - French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner will hold talks with officials in Sudan next week as part of his three-nation Africa tour, diplomats said.

PARIS, June 7, 2007 (AFP) - French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner will hold talks with officials in Sudan next week as part of his three-nation Africa tour, diplomats said.

Kouchner will be in Khartoum Monday for talks on "bilateral relations, regional issues and the situation in Darfur", said a diplomat who did not specify whether the foreign minister would met with President Omar al-Beshir.

He is due to arrive in Mali on Thursday and attend the inauguration of President Amadou Toumani Toure in Bamako the following day.

Kouchner will then head to N'Djamena to see Chadian President Idriss Deby Itno and on Saturday travel to the eastern region of Abeche bordering Sudan, where there are about 250,000 refugees from Darfur as well as 150,000 displaced Chadians.

There are no plans for Kouchner to travel to Darfur, which the foreign minister has said will be priority during his mandate.

Kouchner founded the Doctors without Borders charity and was named foreign minister after Nicolas Sarkozy's presidential election victory last month.

Last week the French foreign ministry suggested creating a "humanitarian corridor" from Chad to Darfur in order to help victims of the conflict.

On Wednesday however, Kouchner said he was "not at all sure" it was a viable idea.

France has 1,000 soldiers stationed in Chad, as well as strike aircraft and helicopters.

Kouchner may hold talks with other African leaders in Bamako but sources said plans for the meetings had yet to be finalized.


Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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