July 28, 2012 (KHARTOUM) — The African Union mediation has suspended talks between Sudanese government and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement North (SPLM-N) over the humanitarian access to the rebel controlled areas in Blue Nile and South Kordofan states, a news report said.
Talks over humanitarian aid to Blue Nile and South Kordofan are deadlocked as the Sudanese government refuses the SPLM-N’s involvement in the distribution of the humanitarian assistance.
Khartoum has long refused to allow UN agencies to work in the rebel held areas in South Kordofan and Blue Nile fearing the rebels will also be fed by the humanitarian assistance. However, it accepted the food distribution to the needy civilians in the rebel areas after the African Union and Arab league committed themselves to deploy monitors to scrutinise the humanitarian operation.
According to London-based Asharq Alawsat, United Nations Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Sudan and South Sudan Haile Menkerios, stated that the members of the tripartite initiative have decided to suspend talks between the two parties over humanitarian access.
"The suspension of (humanitarian discussions) is caused by politicians", Menkerios said. "And until they reach solutions the humanitarian track will be suspended", he added.
The special envoy further disclosed that the two parties have engaged in indirect political talks through the African Union mediators.
Sudan earlier this week said it was sending a delegation to start political talks with the SPLM-N in Addis Ababa based on the resolution 2046, which provides that such negotiations should be engaged in accordance with a framework agreement signed on 28 June 2011.
Previously Sudanese president Omer al-Bashir rejected this framework deal and demanded that the talks should be based on the 2005 peace deal signed with the former rebel SPLM when it was a unified movement before the secession of South Sudan.
SPLM-N Secretary General, Yasir Arman ruled out political talks with the Sudanese government because it refuses to implement the tripartite humanitarian agreement and accused Khartoum of practicing a mass starvation policy.
The rebel group, which is under huge international pressure to reach a political settlement with Khartoum, indicated its preference for a comprehensive process including Darfur rebel groups.
But the international community still supports separate political talks for the SPLM-N which is seen more close to Juba.
International diplomats say ending the Sudan-South Sudan disputes seem more urgent for regional stability.