EUFOR – Body of missing French soldier believed found in Sudan
BRUSSELS, March 5, 2008 - Sudanese authorities have found a body,believed to be that of a French soldier missing in Sudan, near the Chadborder, the headquarters of the European peacekeeping force in Chad saidWednesday. "The Sudanese authorities have informed the local EU representative inKhartoum that remains discovered near the Chadian border are believed to bethat of a French member of the European peacekeeping force who has beenmissing since March 3," the EUFOR force statement said. "The arrangements for the formal identification and recovery of the remainsare currently being organised," the force said in the statement, from itsheadquarters near Paris. The unnamed commando went missing on Monday when at least one vehicletaking part in the EU's mission to Chad crossed into Sudan. An exchange offire followed in which a Sudanese soldier and a civilian were killed and aFrench soldier wounded, but details on the incident remain sketchy. Sudan had warned EUFOR it had no mandate to cross the border into Sudan. The force commander, Irish General Patrick Nash, on Tuesday appealed forSudanese assistance in the search for the missing soldier, while expressingregret for an "inadvertent crossing" of the border. He stated that EUFOR "carries out its mandate in full respect of thesovereignty of the Sudanese border". The ongoing deployment of the force remains unaffected, he stressed. The 14-nation EUFOR mission of 3,700 troops began deploying to Chad and theCentral African Republic last month after a delay caused by a rebel assault onthe Chadian capital. Of that total 2,000 will be French troops. So far some 700 have beendeployed as the force builds up its strength.