The United Nations Security Council approved a 26,000-strong peacekeeping force for Darfur on Tuesday to combat fighting in the Sudanese region. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called it a "historic and unprecedented operation" that will send "a clear and powerful signal" of help to the people of Darfur.
The force - the first joint peacekeeping mission by the African Union and the United Nations - will replace the 7,000-strong AU force now on the ground in Darfur no later than Dec. 31. The council urged that the AU-UN "hybrid" achieve "full operational capability and force strength as soon as possible thereafter." (AP)