Home | News    Friday 26 February 2010

UN Security Council calls on other rebels to join Doha talks

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February 25, 2010 (NEW YORK) – The United Nations Security Council called on Darfur rebel groups to follow the example of the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) in joining talks with the government.

SLM of Abdel-Wahid Al Nur and SLM of Ahmed Abdelshafi are among the factions that refuse to participate in the negotiations with the Government of Sudan, which are being hosted in Doha, Qatar.

JEM and an umbrella group of other factions, Liberation Movement for Justice (LMJ) are participating at the talks. The belligerents agreed to sign an agreement before March 15, ahead of the April 11 nationwide election in Sudan.

Council President Gérard Araud of France read out a press statement today commending the recently signed Framework Agreement for the Resolution of the Conflict in Darfur, a short, broadly phrased agreement negotiated secretly by JEM and the Sudanese government.

"The members of the Security Council welcomed the Framework Agreement for the Resolution of the Conflict in Darfur signed by the Government of Sudan and the Justice and Equality Movement on 23 February in Doha," Mr. Araud said referring to the final signing ceremony that followed an earlier deal-signing in Ndjamena, Chad on 20 February. The text of the first agreement was in French.

Mr. Araud added that "The members of the Security Council called on the parties to move to quickly implement the Agreement in full, as an important step towards peace in Darfur. They further called on all (other) parties in Darfur to join the Doha peace process and the Agreement."

Asked by a reporter about what France would do to get Abdel Wahid Al-Nur — the founding leader of SLM living in France – to join the talks, Gérard Araud in his capacity as a French diplomat told the press, "Frankly we have been trying for several years to convince this gentleman to join what was conducted especially in Doha, so we are still trying to convince him to join the movement. But the reality is what the people on the ground are doing. So we do hope that the people on the ground actually will believe that it’s a good agreement. And again I want to express our gratitude to the efforts of the government of Qatar."

After the framework agreement for talks was signed between JEM and Sudan, the Emir of Qatar announced that his country would set up a US $1 billion fund for reconstruction and development of Darfur.

The member countries of the Security Council also commended the Emir of the State of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, and the AU-UN Mediator, Mr. Djibril Bassolé, for their contribution to the peace process. They also acknowledged the "substantial efforts" of Chadian President Idriss Déby Itno in facilitating the accord.

(ST)

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