UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 18 (UPI) -- The U.N. Security Council threatened sanctions against Sudan if it fails to cooperate and call for a genocide inquiry into its strife-torn Darfur region.
In an unusual Saturday session, the 15-member panel passed 11-0 a U.S.-drafted resolution calling for the action, with Algeria, China, Russia and Pakistan abstaining. It was co-sponsored by Britain, Germany, Romania and Spain.
The nations abstaining said they thought sanctions could worsen, rather than improve what has been described as the world's worst humanitarian crisis, where more than 1.2 million people have been uprooted from their homes and some 50,000 have died.
The measure also supports the African Union's monitoring role in Sudan and calls for a negotiated settlement to the conflict.
U.S. Ambassador John Danforth said the action was taken because Khartoum failed to fully comply with a July 30 council resolution demanding Sudan protect its civilians.