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Sudan wants ceasefire for allowing aid into war zones

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March 22, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese foreign minister Ali Karti has revealed that his country wants a ceasefire as a prerequisite to allowing aid into the war-battered state of South Kordofan.

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FILE - Sudan’s foreign minister Ali Karti (REUTERS)

Karti made his statement during a meeting he held on Wednesday with the visiting United Nations (UN) special envoy to Sudan and South Sudan, Haile Menkerios, in the capital Khartoum, according to Sudan’s official news agency SUNA.

The meeting, SUNA said, discussed an initiative proposed by the UN, African Union (AU) and the Arab League (AL) to allow delivery of aid in South Kordofan and Blue Nile.

The two states on the borders with neighbouring South Sudan are the scene of a conflict between government forces and rebels of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement North (SPLMN). The conflict, which erupted last year, has displaced more than 417,000 people, according to UN figures.

Sudan is yet to give its blessings to the tripartite initiative unlike the rebels which announced they had agreed to it. The Sudanese government said it has reservations on some parts and referred the proposal to a technical committee to study it and produce a report on it.

The committee’s report, according to a statement made on Tuesday by Sudan’s Minister of Social Welfare Amira Al-Fadil, will determine the government’s final response.

SUNA reported that the meeting between Menkerios and Karti had addressed Khartoum’s reservations over the initiative.

According to SUNA, the UN envoy said he “understands” Sudan’s reservations. He was keen, however, to reassure the Sudanese minister that the humanitarian situation would not be exploited to exert pressure on the government.

Menkerios was quoted as saying that the initiative is motivated by desire to provide aid to all areas whether controlled by the government or the rebels. He added that efforts were being divided between finding a compromise that would take Khartoum’s reservations under consideration and seeking an end to hostilities on the ground.

For his part, Karti emphasised the importance of ceasing hostilities and military operations so the humanitarian situation would be less risky.

Sudan’s top diplomat went on to tell Menkerios that the government was still studying its options vis-à-vis the reservations over the tripartite initiative. He promised that Khartoum would soon declare its final position.

Sudan initially rejected demands for allowing international aid groups into South Kordofan and Blue Nile but this position appears to have petered out.

The rebels called during a meeting held in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa earlier this month with international envoys, including Menkerios and US Special Envoy to Sudan Princeton Lyman, for delivering aid into the two states with or without Khartoum’s consent.

SPLMN secretary-general, Yasir Arman, later said that his group is ready “for a humanitarian secession [cessation] of hostilities whenever the modalities of delivering humanitarian assistance require it.”

(ST)

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  • 23 March 2012 09:08, by Martin Kat

    Seasefire will allowing aid workers to deliver humanitarain assistant to war zone if the war parties have greed. But it is not a real seasefire it is a delaying tactic in order Sudan government should reorganize its forces to recapture the areas controlled by rebels, that is a plan.

    repondre message

    • 26 March 2012 11:32, by peter Marial

      I quite differ with Martin on saying that it is another tactic for Khartoum Government to recapture the areas under rebel forces,in the sense that the title of the article reads ceasefire to allow UN to the war-zone areas of South Kordofan and Blue Nile.To my understanding,cease means to stop from doing something and ceasefire should also means no more fighting.So,services by un is impotant.

      repondre message

  • 23 March 2012 11:08, by E. Defense Forces

    Khartoum Scared that USA about to kick them out of power.

    http://www.southsudanhub.com/media/240/S_Kordofan_fighters_seek_change/

    repondre message

  • 23 March 2012 16:29, by zulu

    This is a double indemnity proposal. It is a lunacy and the SRF must reject it.

    repondre message

  • 23 March 2012 17:15, by Emporio

    am cautious as history has shown n.c.p to be quiet effective in implementing these strategies aimed at delaying time as a tactic to reorganise,prop up support and mobilise resources for s.a.f to countinue their scorched earth campaign against the now war ravaged nuba mountains region we can only wait as time will tell if this deal actually materialises as we welcome this particular turn of event

    repondre message

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