The former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations visited a displaced persons camp in the troubled Darfur region on Tuesday and sharply criticized Sudan, the United Nations, the U.S. administration and the international community for doing too little to stem the humanitarian crisis there. Richard Holbrooke, traveling with U.S. Sen. Jon Corzine, a New Jersey Democrat, visited the Krinding camp near El Geneina, the capital of West Darfur state. ``What we have seen is very moving, very disturbing, and there is an enormous amount that needs to be done still in the humanitarian area and beyond that,'' Holbrooke told reporters after the visit. ``I do not think that anyone involved, the Sudanese government, the United Nations, the international community, my own country, is yet doing enough,'' he said. ``Everyone needs to do more. The core of this is a political problem and the humanitarian crisis will go on as long as the political issue is not resolved.'' The United Nations views Darfur as the world's worst humanitarian crisis. The Sudanese government is under intense international pressure to restore calm across the swath of western Sudan where an 18-month insurgency has killed more than 30,000 people and driven more than 1 million from their homes. A 30-day deadline set by the United Nations for the Sudanese government to rein in Arab militiamen accused of the violence against black African farmers, or face penalties, expired Monday, informs Guardian Unlimited. According to Reuters, conditions are worsening for refugees in Darfur, U.N. agencies have said, as the Sudanese government and rebels struggle to make headway in talks aiming to ease the conflict in the Darfur region. The U.N. agencies said on Tuesday the Darfuri refugees were facing violent attacks and disease was spreading, while heavy rains were wreaking havoc with aid convoys. The reports came a day after the expiry of a deadline set by the U.N. Security Council for Sudan to prove it can protect the refugees in Darfur or face possible sanctions. "The humanitarian situation in Darfur continues to worsen, with ongoing violations and the rainy season at its peak which is hampering and disrupting the flow of international aid very often," Simon Pluess, spokesman for the U.N. World Food Programme (WFP), told a news briefing in Geneva. The U.N. Security Council is due to receive a report on Darfur from U.N. special envoy Jan Pronk, who is scheduled to address the 15-member body on Thursday. The talks, in the Nigerian capital Abuja, have been bogged down by accusations of ceasefire violations on both sides. On Tuesday, delegates to the talks said the two sides were still at the stage of trying to hammer out a basic starting point for discussions, by narrowing their differences on quite how bad the situation was in Darfur. Talks were adjourned until Wednesday 0900 GMT (10:00 a.m. British time) to allow African Union mediators to fine tune a proposed framework for an agreement between both parties on addressing the humanitarian situation in Darfur. Sudan's government and its rebel foes returned to the negotiating table as African Union-led attempts to reach a deal on ending Darfur's humanitarian crisis were overshadowed by kidnapping claims. As delegates to the AU peace conference in Abuja gathered for their eighth day of talks, they had yet to reach agreement on the first item on the agenda: how to ensure the safety of the Darfur region's 1.2 million displaced people. African mediators have drawn up a draft deal on the issue in the hope of making some concrete progress before the UN Security Council meets on Thursday to hear what is likely to be a critical assessment of Sudan's behaviour. Khartoum's forces, including the Janjaweed Arab militia, stand accused of killing, intimidating and raping members of Darfur's black African minorities, whom the government sees as sympathetic to the area's rebel groups, publishes Channelnewasia.
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