Darfur's human rights situation has not improved in recent months despite increased efforts by Sudan's government and the United Nations, a group of U.N. investigators said Monday.
Presenting their report to the U.N. Human Rights Council, the team of seven independent experts said they were "not in a position to report that a clear impact on the ground has been identified yet" in stamping out abuses and bringing rights violators to justice.
The group was delivering its first progress report to the 47-member body since handing Sudan a list of recommendations in June that ranged from the need to investigate attacks against civilians to preventing the recruitment of child soldiers.
More than 200,000 people have died and some 2.5 million have been displaced since rebels rose up four years ago in the western Sudanese region. Sudan's government is accused of responding to the uprising by unleashing a militia of Arab nomads known as the janjaweed — a charge it denies.
The new report does not address allegations of Sudanese government atrocities, but noted "that certain short-term recommendations were not addressed by the government at all."
The group, which has yet to investigate in Darfur, based the report on information provided by various sources including the Sudanese government, the U.N. mission to Sudan and African Union human rights groups. The report noted discrepancies between information provided by the government and the other sources.
The experts will next report to the council in December, shortly before a hybrid force of 26,000 U.N. and African Union soldiers is due to take up peacekeeping operations in the region.
The European Union has also started planning for a possible 3,000-strong peacekeeping mission to protect civilians in Chad and Central African Republic caught in the spillover of conflict in Darfur.
In Paris on Monday, Frederic Desagneaux, a spokesman for France's Foreign Ministry, said France would introduce a draft resolution to the U.N. Security Council to authorize the mission later in the day.
France's U.N. Ambassador Jean-Maurice Ripert said last month that there are now 400,000 refugees and internally displaced people in Chad, and more than 200,000 displaced people in the northern Central African Republic.