Sudanese parliament on Wednesday rejected a proposed UN takeover of peacekeeping operations from African Union (AU) forces in Sudan's western region of Darfur.
The Sudanese National Council said in a statement following a special session that it "refuses all attempts to transfer the African Union forces' mission in Darfur to forces from the United Nations."
"The parliament members agreed unanimously on the necessity to safeguard Sudan's sovereignty and its security and stability," the statement said, reiterating Khartoum's refusal to any kind of foreign interference in its internal affairs.
Currently, 7,000-strong AU forces are stationed in Darfur under a ceasefire agreement signed between the Sudanese government and the Darfur rebels in April 2004 in the Chadian capital Ndjamena.
In an address to the special parliament session, Sudanese Foreign Minister Lam Akol said that the AU forces had made contribution to easing tensions and controlling violence, as well as building up confidence of local residents and helping the displaced people to return to their homes.
The Peace and Security Council of the AU supported the UN takeover in principle owing to the financial crisis facing the AU peacekeepers, but Khartoum was strongly opposed to the proposal.