African, Arab, European and U.N. leaders agreed in principle Thursday, Nov. 16 to a joint African Union and United Nations peacekeeping force for Sudan's Darfur region.
The force could be as large as 27,000-strong, including the existing 7,000-member African Union peacekeeping force in Darfur, but the leaders did not lay out a timetable for the force to begin work partly because Sudan had some reservations.
U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan said additional personnel could include as many as 17,000 soldiers and 3,000 police officers.
"The next step is for the U.N. and AU to call a meeting of the non-signatories (of the Darfur Peace Agreement) ... and the government of Sudan. It should take place in the next couple of weeks to resolve outstanding issues by the end of the year," said Annan.