Monday, January 23, 2006

Sudan's Bid for Leadership of African Union

In an unfortunate rotation, the African Union's annual summit is being held in Khartoum, Sudan this year. This is unfortunate because the host always is nominated for the leadership of the group, but that would mean the AU this year would be headed by perhaps its most unsavory member: the government of Sudan.

This minor leadership battle is a larger challenge for the African Union, which has aspirations to build better political relations in Africa, including the deployment of peacekeeping forces and the creation of a court of human rights. But such an organization is not likely to succeed in becoming an effective organization if it is led by the countries most likely to be the subject of peacekeeping operations and criminal investigations.

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