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UN To Probe Arms Ban Breaches
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Nairobi, May 5, 2003 (IRIN) - UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has appointed a four-man panel of experts to investigate violations of the arms embargo against Somalia.

In a letter to the President of the Security Council, he named Edward Howard Johns of the United States, Mohamed Abdoulaye M'Backe of Senegal, Johan Peleman of Belgium (also the group's chairman) and Pavanjeet Singh Sandhu of India.

Last month, the 15-nation body adopted a resolution to re-establish the panel of experts to look into breaches of the weapons ban covering access to Somalia by land, air and sea.

The UN says the decision to re-establish the team, which will be based in Kenya, comes after the Council considered the panel's latest report.

The report stated that even after signing the Eldoret ceasefire declaration last October, most Somali factions - currently holding peace talks in Kenya - had continued to import or receive weapons in breach of the arms embargo.

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