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UN pulls Darfur probe after Sudan refuses visa for former rights commissioner

[JURIST] A UN Human Rights Council [official website] investigatory team Wednesday cancelled a scheduled trip to the Darfur region [JURIST news archive] of Sudan after Sudanese officials again refused to grant a visa to a team member. The UN refused to replace Bertrand Ramcharan [official profile; JURIST news archive], a former Acting UN High Commissioner for Human Rights who accused the Sudanese government of violating human rights in a 2004 report [UN News report]. An International Criminal Court (ICC) investigation [JURIST report] into possible war crimes in the Darfur area has documented thousands of civilian killings and hundreds of rapes. Reuters has more.

In December, Sudanese Justice Minister Mohammed Ali al-Mardhi indicated that Sudan would cooperate [JURIST report] with UNHRC investigative missions in Darfur. Last month, incoming UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon [official website] announced that resolving the crisis in Darfur was one of his top priorities [remarks; JURIST report].

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