* Darfur force cut will save $76 mln in 2012-13 – UN
* Troop deployments to be changed to target hot spots
* Sudan UN envoy says cuts reflect peace deal progress
By Michelle Nichols
UNITED NATIONS, April 26 (Reuters) – A U.N. review of
peacekeepers in Sudan‘s western Darfur region recommends a cut
of more than 3,200 troops and nearly 800 police because security
has improved in some parts of the troubled area, the U.N.
peacekeeping chief said on Thursday.
Mainly African tribes took up arms against the government in
Khartoum in 2003, complaining of political and economic
marginalisation. African Union peacekeepers were deployed in
2006 and replaced in 2008 by a joint African Union-U.N. force.
Violence has ebbed from the 2003-04 peak but fighting still
occurs as several rounds of peace talks have failed, hampered by
rebel divisions and ongoing military operations.
U.N. undersecretary-general Herve Ladsous told the U.N.
Security Council that troops should be cut by 3,260, about 16
percent of the authorized force, and police should be reduced by
770, about a 12-percent decrease.
“The proposed reduction in infantry is due mainly to
improvements in security along the Chad-Darfur border and far
northern Darfur following rapprochements between Sudan and Chad
and between Sudan and