Home | News    Saturday 5 August 2006

Sudan appoints former rebel leader as President’s Senior Assistant

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Aug 5, 2006 (KHARTOUM) — President Omer al-Bashir has appointed the leader of a former Darfur rebel faction Minni Minawi as Senior Assistant of the president of the republic, while it was announced that Minawi will come to Khartoum tomorrow.

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Minni Minawi

President Omer al-Bashir has issued a Republican Decree appointing the leader of the Sudan Liberation Movement Minni Arko Menawi as the Senior Assistant of the President of the Republic and Chairman of the Regional Interim Authority of Darfur.

Minawi was expected to arrive today to Khartoum, but he preferred not to go to the Sudanese capital before being named as senior presidential assistant. The intention of the Sudanese government over Minawi appointment as presidential assistant wasn’t clear.

"The government is not serious about this peace and Minni will not come to Khartoum until this decree is issued from the presidency appointing him as assistant to the president," said al-Fadil al-Tijani, the SLA deputy head of political affairs.

Sudanese authorities were aware that the appointment of Minawi to the top post attributed to Darfur rebel groups will not help to convince the other groups to join the signed Darfur peace deal. It is also important to note that divisions within the rebel faction weakened the authority of its leader.

Presidential Adviser Majzoub Al-Khalifa, told the state-run SUNA that the issuance of the Republican Decree appointing Menawi in this position was in accordance with the peace agreement and what has been consulted on with the Presidential Adviser and what has been consulted on with the movements signatories to the agreement.

He further explained that the appointment of Menawi was issued Thursday, August the 3rd upon his return to Sudan after his visit to US and the Netherlands.

He added that his return was delayed for some days, whereas he was supposed to arrive in Khartoum by the end of July as declared by the movement, adding that Menawi is expected to arrive in the country on Sunday according to statements of the movement’s leaders.

(ST)

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