Investigate killing: SA
South Africa has asked the Sudanese government to investigate urgently the killing of a SA National Defence Force peacekeeper in the Darfur region.
Vincent Mthuthuzeli van der Walt and other members of the United Nations and African Union peacekeeping mission were ambushed en route to Hashaba village in northern Darfur on Wednesday.
Two other South Africans, Corporal Kabelo Ronald Sebe and Private Thabiso Sydwell, were wounded in the attack, the SANDF said.
There were conflicting reports last night on the extent of their injuries.
The peacekeepers were escorting a group of police, soldiers and civilians on their way to investigate reports of a growing spate of attacks in the region.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon demanded a full investigation into the killings.
The Department of International Relations and Co-operation joined Ban and called for the perpetrators to be brought to justice. Pretoria ''counts on the Sudanese government to fully cooperate with the UN in this investigation'', it said.
SANDF spokesman Brigadier- General Xolani Mabanga said both the deputy head of the UN peacekeeping force in Sudan and the head of the district were in the group ambushed but were not injured. He could not confirm if the leaders had been targets and said "no terror group" had claimed responsibility for the attack.
Hashaba is in Kutum district, the scene of unrest since early August when a district chief was shot dead during a carjacking attempt.
Wednesday's attack was the second deadly ambush in Darfur this month involving UN-AU peacekeepers. Four Nigerian peacekeepers were killed on October 2 near El-Geneina, in West Darfur state. Eight others were injured.
The UN-AU peacekeeping mission has been in Sudan's far-western Darfur region for more than four years with a mandate to protect civilians in a region where rebel-government clashes, banditry and inter-tribal fighting continue.
International Relations spokesman Clayson Monyela said last night that the government was "deeply disturbed" by the rise in violence in Darfur.
The UN estimates that the conflict in the region, which began in 2003, has killed 300000 people. The Sudanese government puts the estimate at only 10 000.
Rebels took up arms in 2003 accusing the government led by President Omar Al Bashir of marginalising them.
PROTEST AGAINST FOREIGN ARMY
ABOUT 2000 people took to the streets of the Malian capital yesterday to protest plans for foreign military intervention to reclaim territory seized by armed Islamist groups in the north.
The march was organised to support Mali's own army and to protest plans by the Economic Community of West African States to send in a regional force.
The protesters marched through the streets of central Bamako brandishing signs and banners and chanting against interim president Dioncounda Traore.
Mali was once considered one of the continent's most stable democracies. It was plunged into chaos by a March 22 coup that overthrew the government of President Amadou Toumani Toure. - Sapa-AFP