US asks decision on UN Somalia force by June 1

The United States circulated a draft resolution calling for a UN peacekeeping force to be deployed in Somalia to replace a small African Union force, but leaving the Security Council to make a final decision by June 1. The draft resolution, obtained Monday by The Associated Press, would renew the mandate of the African Union force, known as AMISOM, for six months and urge African nations to beef up its troop strength from the current 2,600 to the 8,000 originally authorized. It "expresses its intent to establish a United Nations Peacekeeping Operation in Somalia as a follow-on force to AMISOM, subject to a further decision of the Security Council by June 1, 2009.