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UN: Sudan Cannot Apply ‘Persona Non Grata’ to UN Envoy 

The United Nations said Friday that U.N. personnel cannot be made persona non grata after Sudan declared U.N. special envoy to Sudan Volker Perthes unwelcome in the country.

Sudan's army - led by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan - and the country's paramilitary Rapid Support Forces began fighting eight weeks ago, sparking a major humanitarian crisis. They agreed to a nationwide, 24-hour cease-fire beginning Saturday morning, U.S. and Saudi Arabian mediators said Friday.

Sudan said Thursday that it had notified the United Nations that Perthes was persona non grata. Burhan had previously expressed his disapproval of the envoy.

"The secretary-general recalls that the doctrine of persona non grata is not applicable to or in respect of United Nations personnel, and its invocation is contrary to the obligations of states under the Charter of the United Nations," U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said Friday.

He said Perthes was currently in Addis Ababa.