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President Advises Africa To Form Force To Stem Conflicts
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Nairobi , Kenya , October 13, 2006 – President Kibaki has called for the formation of a continental rapid response force to combat conflicts.

He said the crisis in Sudan's Darfur region had demonstrated that a rapid deployable peacekeeping force is essential for stemming disputes before they degenerate into disasters.

As a result, he said, Kenya was ready to host the Eastern Africa Brigade, a unit that will form part of an African stand-by force.

On the Somali chaos, the President, who is the chairman of Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (Igad), asked all the parties to the conflict to exercise restraint and give dialogue a chance.

Speaking when he presided over a passing out parade for officers at Moi Barracks in Eldoret, he noted that the situation in Somalia that had seen thousands of refugees flee to Kenya could worsen trafficking of small arms in the region.

The President, who is also the commander of the armed forces, asked development partners to support " Kenya's efforts to establish and maintain a well-trained, equipped and rapidly deployable peacekeeping force."

He added the country would benefit from peace in Southern Sudan out of emerging trade and investment opportunities from the reconstruction programme.

He was accompanied by the chief of general staff, Gen Jeremiah Kianga, Defense minister Njenga Karume, Mosop MP John Sambu and Eldoret mayor Jonah Maiyo.

Source: The Nation

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